Vuyiswa Lieta – South Africa

Vuyiswa Lieta – South Africa

Date: July 1, 2015
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Since I joined Gender links, my life has seen changes. Gender links, you gave me a skill, an implement, do not file it, utilise it, it is empowerment for life. This one programme has made a remarkable change in my life.

I am sharing my experience with ward 48 women in Bloemfontein. Linking them with our constitution. A demonstration of the republic of South Africa is a signatory of 2008 SADC protocol on gender and development signed in Johannesburg. The protocol targeting 2015 to halve gender based violence. The South African constitution can attain that as the 2007 Polokwane resolution stipulated that fifty per cent of women must be in leadership. Currently I have been able to influence a number of women in key positions to look at these issues with a gender influenced eye as key decisions are taken. They must know that there should be nothing about them without them. It is not easy because of the resistance in some cases.

I had an opportunity to address two conferences, and I emphasised the importance of women supporting each other and doing away with this pull her down syndrome we have.
The challenge is huge. We still have women who still believe we cannot be led by other women, who are not pushing their decisions but men decide their decisions. Women who are not informed to take up women’s issues. Unfortunately, our women fell in that trap because men want women they will be able to control. However this program encouraged us that one day women will stand for themselves.

This experience has equipped me with skills on how to handle conflict situations, and it gave me strength and courage. Due to this programme, I have become politically independent and that poses a threat to men. When they realise you are determined and other women support you. I learned that out of an experience I had. I took it as a challenge and I continued to empower other women on gender issues.

I have also shared my encounter with young women, to use their skills to resist abuse and refuse to surrender to workplace abuse as it is their right to work. This programme has equipped me with communication skills, I am able to design letterhead, business proposals, press statements, and send emails. The course has equipped me with skills to handle conflicts and negotiate within the family. It has brought harmony at home. Honestly, we now discuss, agree, and further share the house duties.



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