Andrew  !Hoaeb

Andrew !Hoaeb

Date: April 24, 2012
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I am from Arandis, and I am a gender activist. I give training to young people who have failed grade 10, in the areas of education, training and computer literacy. Gender links has been an eye opener for me, and has been a major help to our small mining town. With only 7500 inhabitants, I’ve managed to open a training centre called Arandis information communication technology centre. There we provide training, and implement training on advocacy, and the mainstreaming of gender based violence.

I have been part of the Gender Links team since 2009; since working with them, my mindset towards women has totally changed. I myself had stereotypes of women being housewives; but now, I see the value of giving them education. Through Gender Links I’ve learned about the SADC protocol, and since then, I’ve gotten involved with youth groups, churches and traditional authorities.

I have learnt about professional ways and means of advocating. Mainstreaming gender based violence is so important; there are acts in place to protect and support women. GBV is not an Arandis issue but a SADC issue.
Women in Arandis were mostly unemployed, and depended on men to provide for them; most were computer illiterate. I believe through dedicated work, things are now changing. I don’t believe in I making a difference, but I do believe in we and us; I am a community activist at heart. I had support from the Rossing foundation and Arandis town council; they provided 10 computers. Community leaders have gave us a great deal of assistance.

I have realized through gender links that it’s not the government’s responsibility alone, to work on issues affecting society; the community as whole must make change happen. Now I am even active in assisting smaller towns to establish the same training programs, educating women to access internet and connect to the world. In the end, I want to help women everywhere to use media and help impact society.

Politicians have the whole nation to work on…they have a great deal to work with. It’s up to us to come together and strive for one common goal: Gender equality. Issues like these are only one drop in the bucket. Politicians are responsible for balancing our society; they are aware of the needs of the people. However it’s the responsibility of those at the grassroots level to bring change.


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