FEMNET Update IV from New York

March 1, 2012

56th Session of the CSW

By Aissa Doumara Ngatansou

We attended as a panelist to the event convened by New Field Foundation and Global Fund for Women under the title « The level of change for rural women in sub-Saharan Africa». What could be kept from that activity is that rural women in Africa are organizing and slowly taking control of their future.

They are strategizing so as to secure allies among officials and traditional leaders so the latter can carry their voices ; they are mobilizing against GMOs and the destructive policies of multinationals such as the promoters of the Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) which is supported by the Gates Foundation and others. The achievements of the project «We are the Solution, Let us Celebrate Family Farming » by FAHAMU were presented. The project is expected to advance biodiversity and agroecology in the framework of promoting food sovereignty in Africa. The 3-year project is in its test stage and it covers 5 countries from West-Africa, namely Senegal, Mali, Burkina, Guinea Conakry and Ghana. 12 rural women’s associations are engaged in that test project. By December 31, the progress made by the project through an intensive sensitization campaign using the media enabled the governments of those countries to give their position to support the project.

The panel entitled « Rural girls and urban migration: the role of communication in bridging » organized by UN Habitat: The activity featured a research conducted by Plan International in 4 countries, namely Kenya, Pakistan, Malawi and Cameroon. Here is the benefit of new ICTs in limiting the migrations of rural women, young people and especially girls into urban centers. The key recommendations were calling upon the State to play its role in getting girls to have access to education in order to enable them to achieve their goals and a call upon girls to also take their responsibility to work hard through leadership development and income generating activities.

Aissa is based in the Far Northern region of Cameroon and she is the Coordinator of the Association de Lutte contre les Violences faites aux Femmes [Association for the Fight against Violence directed at Women], the Far Northern chapter. She is currently in New York for the 56th Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.

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