International Day of Rural Women
International Day of Rural Women celebrated in Cameroon
Date: Monday, October 24, 2016
Yaoundé – Cameroon, 10 October 2016. Cameroon's Minister of Women’s empowerment and the family, Pr Marie Theres Abena Ondoua, launched a project on gender empowerment and the acceleration of women’s economic empowerment along the Batchenga-Ntui-Yoko-Lena road construction, which will be implemented by UN Women Cameroon. The project which will run for 3 years, is sponsored by the Development Bank of Central African States in partnership with the African Development Bank, Japan International Cooperation Agency and the French Development Agency, through the government of Cameroon.
Minister of Women’s Empowerment(left) and Spokesperson for Rural women in Batchenga(right). Photo: UN Women/Fajong Joseph
The Minister launched the project as she was addressing close to 1000 rural women, mainly farmers in Batchenga, Lekie Division in the Centre Region of Cameroon during the celebrations of the week-long commemorative activities to mark the International Day of Rural Women on Friday, 7 October 2016.
The Minister told the rural women that "the project is not about UN Women constructing roads … it is about UN Women teaching you (women who live along the road construction project) on how to become entrepreneurs, how to start income generating activities and make money from what you do. UN Women will set up women empowerment centres, develop selling points and create water points amongst others."
The Minister made the declaration while responding to a modicum of problems and challenges which the rural women put forth. According to Madam Ngono Laurentine, spokesperson of the rural women of Batchenga, their plights range from poor quality seeds, lack of financial assistance, lack of access to land by women, and no farm to market roads.
"We need to be empowered if we must achieve the sustainable development goals ," said Madam Ngono.
Farmer exhibits farm produce at Batchenga. Photo: UN Women/Fajong Joseph
According to UN Women Cameroon Country Representative, Mr. Adama Moussa, who accompanied the Minister and equally took frontline role in the official launch of the project and International Day of Rural Women, the above mentioned project will greatly contribute to poverty reduction of women within the road construction zone.
The project is part of UN Women’s key flagship program which is aimed at assisting women and empowering them within the agricultural value chain for the achievement of the sustainable development goals.
UN Women Cameroon Country Office Representative, Mr. Adama Moussa during the launch of the International Day of Rural Women. Photo: UN Women/Fajong Joseph