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Positive gender transformation boosting individuals, communities’ wellness -Oxfam

The Oxfam Nigeria has said that Gender Transformative Approaches have positively influenced and changed attitudes of individuals, families and communities towards gender-based violence. The Programme…

The Oxfam Nigeria has said that Gender Transformative Approaches have positively influenced and changed attitudes of individuals, families and communities towards gender-based violence.

The Programme Manager, Gender Justice, Oxfam Nigeria, Helen Akinyemi, said this on Thursday in Abuja at the ‘Agenda for the Community-based Assembly Workshop’ organized by Oxfam Nigeria.

The participants include women, men and Civil Society Organizations (CSOs), Community Based Organizations (CBOs), women’s rights groups and community groups among others.

Akinyemi said essence of the gathering, which had over 50 participants, was to advocate for the gender transformative change at the macro level by enabling participants to develop strong visions for change and concrete strategies to bridge gender gaps in.

Also sharing lived-experiences regarding issues of gender inequality; advancing SRHR through improved knowledge of SHR; increased women’s participation in governance; and analyzing shared experiences from a gender progressive angle.

According to her, basically, the gathering is to share stories from feminist perspective and learn from it.

She said, “The major purpose is to influence attitudes, behaviors and we have CSOs, CBOs who interact with policymakers, and they are like the intermediaries between the citizens and policymakers.

“It is also to raise consciousness through sharing of stories and experiences, and bringing in different meanings into it on what can address issues of inequality in the society. It is an informal way of influencing attitudes, and we have seen the positive impact with the approaches we have used because the beneficiaries are coming out to testify.

“Everything that has to do with gender we don’t joke with it because is at the center of what we do. A study was conducted in six countries in Africa, and was sponsored by IDRC, and conducted by the research team in Nigeria focused on sexual and reproductive health rights.

“They actually wanted to solve the problem of gender-based part of COVID-19 in livelihoods in Africa. In Nigeria, they focused on sexual and reproductive health rights. So, the dissemination workshop was held in April, then outcome of this research was that we should have a gender analysis and advocacy training for CSOs, CBOs, and MDAs, which we did in first week of September this year,” she said.

The Oxfam official said that the other part of it was to have advocacy and influencing activities, which we approaching with gender transformative approaches, and we are using community-based assembly at the national level to do that.

Also, Executive Director, Emerging Genderplus Outreach Team, Aaron Egot, said, “It is a community assembly that brings people of all backgrounds to discuss issues around sexual and gender-based violence and the reproductive rights of women and girls.

“This is quite important because the right of women and girls have been neglected over time and it becomes a necessity for all hands to be on deck to ensure that women’s rights are restored to them and their dignity intact.”

On her part, National President, Liberate the Women Initiative (LWI), Dr Tobechukwu Princess, speaking with newsmen said, “I learnt a lot today. I have been experiencing a lot from my women but today, I have a different experience from what other people shared on the experience they went through in life.

“Even we experienced somethings does not mean our life is gone or we don’t have future anymore. In fact, it has given me a lot of ideas and I feel like going home organizing a convention for my women using her story as a backup for them to know that marriage is not everything in as much as a woman supposed to be under a man.”