In commemoration of 2021 International Women’s Day (IWD), the Initiative for Women and Girls Right Advancement (IWOGRA), a non-governmental organisation organised a Cross-Community Solidarity and Shared Learning event for grassroots women and girls from Jikwoyi, Chika and Dutse Alhaji communities, in Abuja.
This event was made possible with support from ActionAid Nigeria under the Strengthening the Capacities of Women’s Rights Organisations to Combat Violence Against Women and Girls (SLOC-VAWG) Project.
According to the Programme Officer of the Project, Sa’adatu Adamu, “The purpose of the event is to bring together the different communities’ women and girls that have been trained under the project to share experiences on challenges and successes made in the course of changing social norms that promotes violence against women and girls in their communities and how they have been able to build the confidence of the women and girls in their communities.
“The women and girls will also develop strategies for campaigns and campaign on issues that will contribute to ending violence against women and girls.”
The event was facilitated by the Executive Director of IWOGRA, Nkechi Obiagbaoso-Udegbunam. She intimated the women and girls about the importance of the day being the Women’s Day.
According to her, “Today is a special day for us women. It is a day set aside for women all over the world to be celebrated and for women to reflect on how they are seen and placed in the society, challenge all gender stereotypes and demand an end to all forms of discrimination and violence against women and girls.”
She added that the year’s celebration is a call to action as seen from the hashtag which is #ChooseToChallenge. She asked the women and girls to reflect and decide on what they have chosen to challenge.
She enjoined them not to put words on paper but in action.
Obiagbaoso-Udegbunam facilitated a session wherein the participants shared the successes they have made so far in addressing issues of violence against women and girls in their communities.
They also spoke about the challenges faced and through the shared learning, possible solutions were proffered to address the challenges faced.