Voice and Choice summits kick start in Southern Africa

Voice and Choice summits kick start in Southern Africa

Date: June 4, 2019
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Johannesburg, 4 June: Gender Links (GL) and the Southern Africa Gender Protocol Alliance will host the #VoiceandChoice summits in Angola; Botswana; DRC; eSwatini; Lesotho; Madagascar; Malawi; Mozambique  Namibia; Seychelles; South Africa; Tanzania; Zambia and  Zimbabwe  from June to September 2019. Mauritius has already convened its national summit and announced its 14 winners .These country level summits will culminate in a regional summit to be held in November 2019 at the commencement of the 16 Days of Activism.

Entries are now open and GL is calling for submissions in the following categories Action, Youth, Media, Drivers of Change Entrepreneurship current, Entrepreneurship previous as well as Centres of Excellence Institutional.

Running under the banner Local Action for a strong 2030 A-gender in Southern Africa the summits serve as a springboard to call governments to account for gender equality commitments made in the SADC Gender Protocol and the Sustainable Development Goals. The summits will pave way for the localisation of the recently adopted SRHR strategy.

The main purpose of the #VoiceandChoice Summit is to allow participants to learn and share best practices from various sectors across the countries including Government departments, Non-Governmental organisation (NGOs), Community Based Organisations (CBOs), Faith Based Organisations (FBOs), Local Government councils as well as the media.

The summit will also include plenaries on #VoiceandChoice and fifty –fifty campaigns in light of the national elections taking place across the region.

From 2018 GL and the Alliance have run the #VoiceandChoice campaign focusing on the importance of enabling women, to have voice, choice and control over their own Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR). Since then GL and the Alliance have developed 37 national SRHR and 103 local SRHR campaigns putting emphasis on particularly maternal health , menstrual health,  Comprehensive Sexual Education and teenage pregnancies, Safe Abortion, HIV and AIDS , Child marriages as well as sexual diversity. In addition, GL worked with 95 councils across ten countries to update their SRHR plans. The summits also provide an important checkpoint to evaluate the implementation of the campaigns and action plans at national and local level.

The Voice and choice campaign connects the dots from global to regional to local level in the implementation of the gender equality frameworks. Under the #VoiceandChoice campaign GL also conducted a mapping of SRHR policies and laws in SADC to gauge whether countries have put in place SRHR laws and policies and whether these are adequate in the promotion and protection of SRHR especially for youth and adolescents. This mapping gives firm grounding for advocacy purposes to hold governments accountable. 

Entries to participate in the summit are now open and will close on carried dates across the different countries as follows:

Country Application Closing date Summit dates Contact person
Mauritius 20 May 31 May -1 June Sheistah Bundhoo

+230 4373960/ 57709846

Email   progmauritius@genderlinks.org.za

Botswana 5 June 11-12 June Keletso Metsing

+267 3188250


Madagascar 13 June 20-21 June Zotonantenaina Razanadretefa

+261 328732519


South Africa 15 June 27 – 28 June Susan Mogari

+27 11 029 0006


Seychelles 14 June 5 July Sharon Thelemaque

Phone no.      +248 322979

Email   sernesta76@gmail.com

Namibia 28 June 17 – 18 July Fabian Sampaya

+264 812398645


DRC 28 June 18-19 July Anna Mayimona Ngemba

+243 999 913 746


Malawi 28 June 18 – 19 July Emma Kaliya

+265 888825376


Angola 5 July 25-26 July Veronica Sapalo

+244 926 544 477/ 941 967 974


Tanzania 5 July 25-26 July Maureen Mboka

+255 754 784 050


Mozambique 17 July 25-26 July Graca Ricardo

+258 214923


ESwatini 30 August 19 – 20 September Thandokuhle Dlamini

+268 76240486


Lesotho 30 August 19 – 20 September Ntolo Lekau

+266 22316 755


Zimbabwe 30 August 26 – 27 September Tapiwa Zvaraya

+263 242 798 600


Zambia 7 September 26-27 September Albert Ngosa

+260 966686722


For more information contact Thato Phakela on commsofficer@genderlinks.org.za /082 560 0066 OR visit our website, Facebook page and follow us on Twitter to join the #VoiceandChoice Campaign 

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