IWD 2019: Imparting Ideas of Gender Equality to the Young Generation in Tanzania
On March 8 every year the world comes together to celebrate the remarkable achievements by women in all aspects of life that are socially, politically and economically. Historically women have been despised in many ways because of discriminatory male dominance systems in many societies that consider women weak sex incapable of making important decisions, taking part in leadership and even economic production. This longstanding discrimination against women has led to the eruption of movement by women to demand equal space in all aspects of life, therefore, the rise of campaigns for gender equality around the world.
Legal and Human Rights Centre believes in equality of all human beings notwithstanding their differences being it sex, race, economic wellbeing, literacy rate or any other; for that reason, LHRC joins the global community to celebrate the improving status of women in the world and Tanzania in particular. Legal and Human Rights Centre empowers the community in Tanzania with a view of attaining gender equality through mass education, building the capacity of women on laws and human rights, advocacy for reforms of discriminative laws and policies as well as the change of practices that undermine women in the country.
As part of empowering the community on gender equality and rights of women, LHRC made use of the women’s day 2019 to bring together youth from secondary schools and universities in Dr es Salaam to discuss on issues around gender equality with a view of imparting ideas of gender equality to the group. During the dialogue, youth discussed various existing challenges that hinder women and girls from fully enjoying their rights in the society including gender based violence, sexual harassment and corruption, negative perception towards women and girls, harmful traditional practices as well as restrictive laws and policies.
LHRC believes that there is a potential of positively changing the perception of societies towards women and fight all forms of discrimination against women if only the young generation is empowered on the importance of gender equality. For that reason, LHRC through its six years strategic plan, 2019 - 2024 seeks to continue with legal empowerment to women and girls as well as advocacy for reforms of laws and policies and change of practices that affect women in Tanzania for the attainment of 50/50 ratio by 2030. Gender equality is bedrock to attaining a just and equitable society.
International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8 every year. It is a focal point in the movement for women's rights. The day originated after the Socialist Party of America organised a Women's Day on February 28, 2019, in New York, the 1910 International Socialist Woman's Conference suggested a Women's Day be held annually. After women gained suffrage in Soviet Russia in 1917, March 8 became a national holiday there. The day was then predominantly celebrated by the socialist movement and communist countries until it was adopted in 1975 by the United Nations. Women demanded that they are given the right to vote and to hold public office. They also protested against employment sex discrimination.
The United Nations began celebrating International Women's Day in the International Women's Year, 1975. In 1977, the United Nations General Assembly invited member states to proclaim March 8 as the UN Day for women's rights and world peace.
Today, International Women's Day is a public holiday in some countries and largely ignored elsewhere. In some places, it is a day of protest; in others, it is a day that celebrates womanhood.
Every year International Women’s Day is celebrated with a unique theme both international and local. This year’s IWD international theme is “Balance for Better” which is a call to action for driving Gender balance across the world.