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SA Minister Launches Women Empowerment Programme



The Deputy Minister of Social Development, Ms Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu Launches the Women Empowerment Framework in Mpumalanga. The launch of the project follows a consultative process involving community dialogues with women and by women in Mawewe and surrounding villages.

As part of the celebration of this year’s Women’s Month Programme and the centenary of Mama Albertina Sisulu, under the theme: “100 Years of Albertina Sisulu, Woman of Fortitude: Women United in Moving South Africa Forward”, the Department of Social Development will launch a flagship Women Empowerment Project in Mawewe, Mpumalanga, on Wednesday 22 August 2018.

Mawewe is rural community in the Nkomazi District, Mpumalanga. The launch of the project follows a consultative process involving community dialogues with women and by women in Mawewe and surrounding villages.

The project’s goal is to empower and to secure the livelihoods and rights of women living in rural areas in the context of sustainable development goals and the current national discourse on women’s rights to equitable access to productive land in South Africa. Spearheaded by the Deputy Minister of Social Development, Ms Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, the project seeks to synergise the Department’s efforts and partnerships with both public and private entities to generate more lasting and wider scale improvements in the livelihoods and rights of women.

This will include amongst others, training and capacity building, skills development, support to women-led cooperatives to improve their access to funding and market opportunities and ensure linkages for rural women and young girl’s access to interventions such as prevention of and response to sexual and gender-based violence, as well as sexual and reproductive health services. One of the initiatives that women expressed keen interest in is the establishment of the rural tourism enterprise in the area which lies in the outskirts of the Kruger National Park.

The implementation of this project involves a range of bilateral, strategic partnerships and potential financial partners.

“We have partnered with the MTN SA Foundation, the Department of Tourism, the State Information Technology Agency (SITA) and the Tribal Authority to assist women living in rural areas who are already doing their bit to improve the livelihoods of their families and communities to end the inter-generational cycle of poverty. Special Olympics South Africa will also be playing their role to ensure that children and persons with disabilities participate in various sporting activities,” said Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu.

Each of the partners will, on the day, pledge their support for the project with the MTN SA Foundation handing over 100 bicycles to learners who travel long distance to get to school. The Department of Social Development has already committed itself to opening a White-Door Centre of Hope in Mawewe before the end of 2018. The centre will provide psychosocial and empowerment services to victims of gender-based violence