World Women’s Day is commemorated at Haramaya University

 

Haramaya University commemorated World Women’s Day 2016 under the slogan “Planet 50-50 by 2030 STEP IT UP FOR GENDER EQUALITYat Haramaya University on March, 18 2016 at Resource Center Main Campus.

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According to the University’s Gender, HIV/ AIDS and Special Need Issues Mainstreaming Directorate Director, Mrs. Emebet Belete the celebration was mainly focused on promoting women’s right, the actual feminist movements and increasing awareness among the university community.

International women’s day (IWD) is an occasion marked by women around the world on March 8. This date is commemorated at the united nation and it’s decided in many countries as national holiday.

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Mrs. Emebet said that this historical day is celebrated to commemorate the struggle of women for equality, justice, peace and development. It can be an opportunity for coming together and play roles of advocacies and awareness rising in the efforts of assuring equality, justice, peace and development.

Mr. Tiglu Melese, head of the Haramaya  University  president Office, on his opining speech indicated that women at everywhere have the capacity to demonstrate  a high level responsibility and a great role of bringing the social ,economical and political outstanding in a given community, so we are here to promote the Unity and equality of women.

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Mr. Tiglu said, “The panel discussion will contribute to build our understanding of strategic ways forward to ensure women can participate in shaping the policies and programs that will bring about economic growth, social development and greater gender equality in Ethiopia in general and Haramaya University in Particular…”

He also emphasized that Haramaya University is committed to continue working with all stakeholders to provide opportunities for reforms on women’s empowerment and gender equality to be implemented effectively.

During the celebration, Gender, HIV/ AIDS and Special Need Issues Mainstreaming Directorate organized a panel discussion on historical foundations of IWD, human and women’s rights in which motivated participation has been exhibited from the side of the audience mainly composed of staff and students of the University.

On this panel discussion, the challenges for women empowerment as expressed by participants were cultural barriers, lack of confidence, the absence of forums where women can network and support each other, access to information and the lack of time for self development as women have the burden of working in offices, running a household and attend to social responsibilities.

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Participants suggested that alongside such forum a mechanism should be in place to train and engage men at all levels of the university to support women’s empowerment, that the university should bring more women to leadership who can serve as role models, that there should be some form of follow-up after such panel discussion and that a networking forum where women can share experiences and support each other be established.

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By Shemsedin Mohammed/Public & International Relation Directorate

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