Mary Manda-Zambia

Mary Manda-Zambia

Date: June 30, 2015
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Being raised as a girl you are most likely taught or shown to having to be more feminine or limited to certain freedoms than to a boy. A boy is said to be more superior than the girl, a boy is said to be the head, whilst a girl the tail. When I was young my parents used to tell me that to be a responsible wife I need to find myself in the kitchen, knowing how to cook will make me a good wife because no man wanted to marry a woman who couldn’t cook for him. And during our times, it was difficult to challenge your parents so I had to live by that rule but I am glad today things have changed, both girls and boys are considered to be equal.

I always say we can’t rely on the past to build our future, we need to change the ways we live. Today it’s totally different the way we handle issues on gender, even in villages people are aware that gender inequality is a violation of human rights.

The world is advocating for gender equality through campaigns, songs, training and many more. I am glad I have joined the campaign to end gender inequality, I became part of the gender activists when I met Gender links in 2010, when had a COE gender training workshop.

The COE workshop was a success, the most memorable experience was during the same workshop, all the sessions were very educative. Little did I know that women are vulnerable to climate change, I realised Africa is one of the most vulnerable continents to climate change and that to fight climate change women’s voices should be included.

As a chief development officer, I will dedicate my time to teach people in communities the impact climate change has on society especially women. Society need to understand that human activities also contribute to climate change. My way of thinking has now changed, I read a lot about climate change I have discovered a lot of new things even high consumption of meat contributes to climate change. In Mazabuka keeping animals is one of the characteristics, and when more animals are kept then there will be a rise in consumption of meat. People say that only developed countries have a high consumption of meat, but even here in Africa animal keeping is another type of farming

I give credit to Gender Links for the knowledge I have today, I was ignorant about climate change but I know what causes climate change and what can be done to put an end to it. What I hope for is to see that more workshops on climate change are organised.

I wish to thank the facilitator, Faides Nsofu for her effort to train us on gender issues, like I said during our days there was nothing like gender training , never a day did I see or listen to my parents talking about gender. We need more people like her; gender training is just as important as other topics. Faides has always been there for us, whenever we need her she is always available, I also thank Gender Links for giving us such a charismatic facilitator.

I have acquired skills, knowledge and attitude since my first contact with Gender Links. For so many years it was difficult to understand climate change and its impact, but now I have the books to read and I will share the knowledge with my fellow members of staff and community members.

I say I am not a selfish person because my change is influencing other lives. I know I have talked so much about climate change, but this is my main specialisation. Apart from that I work with other community members to sensitise on gender and gender based violence, I involve all because I want to change other lives like Gender Links has done to me. I want everyone to be happier and live a fulfilled life like me. I want perpetrators to become better persons, Zambia is identified as a peaceful country, the same peace should continue even in the community, peace is not having war, but being free from any form of violence.

I want to see more people committing themselves in the fight against gender inequality and gender based violence. Girls should not be considered to be inferior like in the past, those days are gone let us work together as a district to put an end to this vice. We need to be responsible citizens.



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