Awareness Raising Projects
My Rights as a Woman and Namibian Citizen! Gender and Human Rights Awareness Raising.
7 September 2011: WAD officially launched this ground-breaking project, to announce the facilitation of an impressive number of workshops in all 107 constituencies of the country, to train women, traditional leaders, spiritual leaders, journalists, regional politicians, party cadres, Parliamentarians, the Judiciary etc, in the contents of Gender-related laws, Human Rights, the Namibian Constitution, the electoral process etc, in an attempt to mobilize and equip women with confidence to run more enthusiastically for public office, after the results of the 2009 national elections and 2010 regional elections became known.
After these elections, women were profoundly disappointed that the representation of women in the two Houses of Parliament had dropped significantly from 33% to 23%, 21 years after Namibia gained its Independence.
WAD and the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung are acting as the implementing agents of the project, while the Law Faculty of the University of Namibia, the Legal Assistance Centre and WAD’s “Regional Community Voice” members are acting as trainers, together with the Ministry of Gender Equality and Child Welfare as supporting Ministry.
This project has a duration of 3 years and is funded by the European Union and the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung to the tune of N$4,8 Million,Refer to EU link.
Training and Creating Awareness in Namibian Secondary Schools to prevent Gender Based Violence
“800 Life Skills Teachers and Teacher Counsellors trained in Gender Based Violence”
4 July 2011: The Namibian society witnessed WAD breaking new ground, when this two-year project was officially launched by the Minister of Education, Honourable Abraham Iyambo at which time the sponsorship of the Spanish Government to the tune of N$1 Million was announced.
The project was launched at a time when the Namibian society found itself in a serious crisis of Gender Based Violence and was compelled to admit to itself that the degree of violence against women and girls had escalated so profoundly that the citizenry were compelled to find new avenues to tackle this scourge head on!
To give impetus to the aforegoing, WAD, as the Commissioning NGO and implementer of the project, formed a Tri-partnership with the Ministry of Education, as the supporting Ministry, and the Law Faculty of the University of Namibia, as the training institution, to first and foremost, train 800 life skills teachers and teacher counselors in the causes and consequences of Gender Based Violence, after a research was conducted by WAD and the Social Sciences Faculty of the University of Namibia to determine the root causes of violence against women and girls. This training will, in the process, target 67 550 secondary school learners at Junior and Senior secondary school levels, in an attempt to dramatically reduce Gender Based Violence in the Namibian society.
The co-operation among the three aforementioned parties is an excellent example of how Government institutions and the private sector can form synergies to achieve credible results and value for money invested. WAD expresses its sincere appreciation for the overwhelming willingness of the Ministry of Education and the University of Namibia to put their weight behind this project.
Women’s Celebration March
WAD celebrates women’s achievements through “The Women’s Celebratory March and
Women’s Celebratory Programme”:
2007 and 2008: Women’s Action for Development (WAD), established a culture of respect for women’s achievements, together with thousands of women who participated in this programme during 2007 and 2008. Women proudly marched to the Parliamentary Gardens in the capital, to participate in the historic “Women’s Celebratory March” and Special Celebratory Programme”.
The purpose was to celebrate their numerous achievements in the Namibian society since the country gained its independence during 1990.
Due to the tremendous inspirational value which this activity held for women, WAD hosted this event for two consecutive years in the capital, in honour of all those marginalized mothers who are feeding their families – very often single-handedly - and all those dynamic women who have made it to the top, in having penetrated all sectors of society despite numerous prejudices facing them to be an accomplished work force.
The participating women included women in politics, the Defence Force, including the Air force, the Army, the Navy, the health, education and Legal professions, civil engineering; chartered accountants; the Police Force, Prisons, Commercial Banks, Churches, the Clergy, the NGO fraternity, the Media, Road Workers, Street Sweepers, and various others.
For WAD and its partners, this was a most exciting initiative to celebrate and show-case how women have fought their way up, against many odds, into every facet of human activities in Namibia. It took many years of oppression and inequality, but women persevered and were tenacious enough, and resolute in their determination, to prove that they have what it takes to feature where their male compatriots have featured on their own for many decades.
28 May 2009: The Anti-Corruption Commission and WAD formed a partnership to co-host this commendable awareness-raising and educative project on this day - “The Great Walk Against Corruption,” on which more than 2 000 people from all walks of life participated.
The purpose of this historic project in which an equally historic number of corporate institutions, Ministries, Politicians, civil servants, etc participated, was intended to establish a culture of “Zero tolerance for corruption in the Namibian society.” It was further intended to establish a powerful awareness-raising exercise among young and old in Namibia to refrain from engaging in corruption; and to report corrupt practices without fear of retribution.
It was during this time that WAD detected a serious lack of self-confidence and assertiveness among the most marginalized, to rise and speak out against corrupt practices without fear of retribution. Many did not know what the word “corruption” meant, let alone the destructive affects it holds for the poor! It is for this reason that WAD immediately supported and co-operated with the ACC, to assist the institution to disseminate educational materials and to partner on Anti-corruption projects, to train the most marginalised to view corruption for what it really is and to become more assertive in exposing and reporting corruption in society.
Socio Economic Projects
Dehydration of Fruits and Vegetables
WAD Trainers and rural communities trained in Food Processing, the Drying of Fruits and Vegetables, the production of Peanut Butter and the professional packaging thereof for the local and export markets:
12 August 2011: This milestone project was officially launched at the WAD Omahenene Training Centre in the Omusati region, at which time 20 WAD trainers across the country, were trained in Food Processing; the Drying of Fruits and Vegetables, the production of Peanut Butter, as well as the professional packaging thereof for the local and export markets.
The training was conducted by a Tanzanian expert, Ms Clara Ibihya, from the “African Women Agribusiness Network in Tanzania”, while the packaging training was conducted by GIZ Consultant, Edmund Sunkutu from Zambia. The WAD trainers in turn, were assigned to their respective regions to train other unemployed women in these skills to start similar income-generating ventures.
WAD Trainers have hitherto trained 20 unemployed women and men in Gobabis to acquire these skills, as well as 15 women at the WAD Hardap Training Centre at Rehoboth on 10 November 2011, at which time the Deputy-Minister of Lands and Resettlement, Honourable Theo Diergaardt, officiated during the certificate presentation ceremony. The products have since been sent to India to search for international markets and it is further the intention to package these products for the local markets.
WAD highly commends the GIZ CHANCE Programme for having sponsored the project to the tune of N$100 000,00 and for reaching out in this manner to poor rural women to acquire these unique skills, which will greatly contribute towards reducing the alarming unemployment rate of 60% among working women in the country.
Hybrid Seed Production Cooperation amongst WAD, Pupkewitz and TMS (Israeli based Company) – An Agro Based Project
January 2012: Women’s Action for Development signed a Letter of Understanding with TMS (Israeli Company) and is at the brink of making History by pioneering a massive, agricultural project of Hybrid Seed Production under licence of NUNHEMS a Netherlands based Global Seed Company.
TMS brought this initiative to Namibia and they will also provide technical expertise in the production of Hybrids seeds. Currently the project is at the stage of certification by the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry after which the pilot phase will commence at Aussenkehr where the climatic conditions are most favourable.
Upon completion of the pilot phase, the production will concentrate on Hybrid Seeds for Tomato, Melons, Water melons and Cucumber. Pupkewitz group were later on incorporated into the project and they are the funding partners responsible for infrastructural development, Capital equipment and management solutions. WAD will provide the mobilization and management of Women Cooperatives who will be directly involved with the production of the Hybrid seeds. The project at full phase will employ a total of 960 women divided into 24 Cooperatives of 40 women each. Each cooperative will be producing on a 1 hectare plot. The initial full production phase will be implemented on 24 Hectares with the potential of growing to 150 Hectares of land. The licence quarter of the project is initially 15 years with prospects of renewal and continuity.
The Hybrid Seed production of this nature will be the first of its kind for the Global Seed Companies to implement on the continent of Africa. Furthermore this project will give birth to a brand new industry in Namibia and the subsequent creation of employment to many people primarily women. WAD is proud to be engaged in a project that will change the lives of many people, women in particular.
WISE Economy (Partner Driven Entrepreneurial Cooperation between Namibia and Sweden) – Cooperation amongst: Namibian Employers Federation (NEF), Women’s Action for Development (WAD) and Chamber Trade Sweden (CTS)
June 2012: Proposed to be implemented towards the end of 2012. WAD is bracing itself for yet another ground breaking project best known as “WISE ECONOMY”. The SWEDISH born project to be cooperated by WAD, NFE and CTS has the following objectives:
- Women’s economic empowerment through organisational development (OD) of WAD, creation of a sustainable cross-border network on economic growth in Namibia, establishment of links between women entrepreneurs in Namibia, Botswana, South Africa and Sweden via parallel projects between CTS and Botswana and CTS and South Africa.
- Capacity building/experience sharing between Chamber Trade Sweden (CTS) and Namibian Employers Federation (NEF) on Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) and social entrepreneurship.
- Capacity building of WAD in Namibia on organisational development such as sustainability, income generation, member services, membership outreach, training of trainers and social entrepreneurship.
- Trade promotion activities in a smaller scale including seminars, provision of market information, trade fairs and networking groups.
The long term benefit of this project will be the establishment of a strong network of women entrepreneurship on local and international level through the promotion of trade. Namibian informal and SME sector has been trailing behind, with only a few privileged women businesses in this category managing to trade beyond the borders.