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Food Security News South Africa

Recognising the role of rural women in agriculture

15 October marks the United Nations' International Day of Rural Women and celebrates and honours rural women play around the world. The day recognises the important role women play in enhancing agricultural and rural development, improving food security and eradicating poverty.
tpsdave via
tpsdave via pixabay

The first International Day of Rural Women was observed in 2008. The idea of honouring rural women with a special day was put forward at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, China, in 1995. It was suggested that October 15 be celebrated as "World Rural Women's Day," which is the eve of World Food Day, to highlight rural women's role in food production and food security.

Celebrating Southern Africa's rural women

GenderCC Southern Africa, a nonprofit organisation with the vision of becoming a leading platform for women to effectively represent their needs and rights at grassroots, national, regional and international climate policy areas, will be hosting a workshop in Johannesburg (Joubert Park, Greenhouse Project) on 15 October. Hundreds of women from around Gauteng and the country will be in attendance, as well as various local and regional stakeholder organisations.

According to Dorah Marema, executive director of GenderCC Southern Africa, the day will be celebrated by looking at challenges as well as the proposals from women for the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, France in December 2015.

"Although progress has been made to recognise the role of women in agriculture, much more still needs to be done. Despite women in Africa being the primary providers of household food security, women still do not receive the same level of support from governments and financial institutions as men do. We want to build partnerships with women which can influence policy and the status quo for the benefit of the broader society," Marema explained.

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