Amid the Inequalities of Gender in Tanzania
on Clarifel Rodrigo (Tanzania), 22/Sep/2011 12:47, 34 days ago
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In Tanzania, the inequalities of women and men still persist politically, socially and economically. And this is common in developing countries. As per report of World Bank;women in the developing world have made strides in education, but still lag far behind men in opportunities, a gender gap that is hampering growth. In many areas (developing countries),girls and women continue to suffer discrimination that keeps them second-class citizens economically and socially, and even in health. a Massai woman in Handeni DistrictIn Tanzania, 60% of women live in absolute poverty. Below are some facts about women in this country (source: Tanzania Poverty and Human Development Report, 2009).·        Women are deprived of education and information. In 2008, the population aged 15-49 years; 19.1% of women had no formal education, while only 9.5% for men. In the post secondary education; only 32.1% of women were enrolled in the colleges and universities. ·        Low participation in the Labor Market. Unemployment rate for female was higher; which is 15.4% compare to men which is 14.3%. Only 24.7% of women were paid employees on the labor supply.  ·        Over 60% of people living with HIV are women.Although, their government is putting efforts to mainstream gender in all their development initiatives and activities, their customary laws and traditions limit the full development of the potentials of their women. Like in tribal communities, they won’t allow women to have property – such as owning a land or cattle for farming. A woman in Handeni District carrying a bucket of water for her familyIt’s good to know that the Government of Tanzania has passed several laws in favour of women i.e. Sexual Offences Special Provisions Act of 1998, the Land Law Act of 1999 and Village Land Act of 1999. The first Law protects women, girls and children from sexual harassment and abuse. The last two laws repeal and replace previous legislations on land matters thus enabling women to enjoy equal rights with men in access, ownership and control of land( of the inequities, there are women in Tanzania who works hard on their own to break this gap and through their initiative; they have started to build their life in order to be productive economically and socially, thus, to eradicate poverty in their families and community. Recently, I made a report about groups of women in the community where my organization is serving. The meetings and interviews were in Kiswahili but the results were translated to English by my colleague. Their stories were inspiring and they gained my respect and admiration.during the documentation process of my reportThese women lack education but this did not stop them to dream ofimproving the lives of their families and their children. Out of 45 women we documented, 33 of them had primary education and 12 had secondary.  But through their own choice, they are now in the process of transforming themselves to be self-sufficient and self-reliant.   Their livelihood makes them earn USD 1 to 2 a day but they continue to work hard to be totally free from poverty.Basilica Kimaro, 29, married with 2 children, earns at least USD 822.00/year from her farm Alphocina, 28, married with 3 children, earns at least USD 576/year from her farmIIIII*and me - a lucky woman to be from one of the countries that offer women the most expansive rights and the best quality of life (Philippines is one of the Top 20 countries with the rank of 17th<out of 165 countries> as the best place for women)*the picture was taken in Macau last July 2010A woman is the full circle.Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.~ Diane Mariechild ~