During March, various events were held throughout the SWHAP network to commemorate International Women’s Day and Women’s Month.
In the DRC, SWHAP brought together 30 women from the Confédération Syndicale du Congo (CSC) and the Association of Female Entrepreneurs of the DRC (ASSOFE) to build capacity on social dialogue for gender equity. Each participant was guided through a gender mainstreaming and evaluation tool in order to help them identify the gender gaps in their companies.
SWHAP marked International Women’s Day in Mozambique with a dialogue for 55 of its partners who included companies participating in the programme, ECoSIDA (a local business council on HIV) members and representatives from unions and the National AIDS Council. Held under the theme “Time is now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women’s Lives” the objective of the dialogue was to encourage the private sector to make greater strides in the empowerment of women towards gender equity and to encourage reflection amongst participants on the role they could play to empower both rural and urban women.
The dialogue also raised awareness on the importance of International Women’s Day as a platform for addressing women’s health and rights in the context of HIV and AIDS. The National AIDS Council reminded participants of the barriers to accessing health services faced by women, noting that in Mozambique HIV prevalence was higher in women than men and that only 45% of women successfully adhered to antiretroviral therapy.
SKF and Epiroc participated in the district events in Kitwe. The companies celebrated the women in their workforce as well as the female spouses of employees, and in line with their annual tradition, purchased fabric for all the women to make outfits in their preferred styles.
Sandvik held a session on cervical cancer for women in their workforce and then treated them to a special lunch where the women celebrated their accomplishments.
Epiroc invited an external facilitator to talk to its employees about women’s empowerment. The men at the office were invited to take part in the discussions as a way to inspire them to empower women in their workplaces, communities and families.
View more pictures on our International Women’s Day album on Facebook.