Balance for better: Women share thoughts and experiences

Eva Gara(standing), the organiser of the event, during the discussion. Photos by Sharon Kantengwa

As the world celebrated International Women’s Day on March 8, women in Kigali on Saturday met over brunch to discuss matters surrounding several aspects of their lives.

Themed ‘Balance for better’, over 40 women of different age groups, professions, nationalities and marital statuses sat together and shared their thoughts and experiences on their challenges of balancing career and home, and how to successfully strike stability.

The event, held at Billy’s Bar and Bistro, Century Park, was organised by Events Horizon Ltd, which has for the past six years organised events for International Women’s Day and Mother’s Day.

The discussions centred around balancing family and career.

“When I read the theme for this year I thought to myself, here is a topic that speaks to many of us because of the pressure that surrounds us, to work hard, in our careers and our homes. 

Be it single ladies with a demanding career and family expectations of your family, a new wife learning how to manage her job and new home, or a mother trying to find time to raise her children while succeeding financially too, the struggle for women to balance it all is so real. 

Women from all walks of life gathered to share their thoughts and experiences over brunch organised in honour of International Women’s Day. 

‘Women have to make sacrifices, put careers on hold to focus on home life, while others have to bring in help (nannies, grandmothers or siblings) to help carry the load at home while they are out in the field,” said Eva Gara, the co-founder of Events Horizon Ltd.

As the women were treated to sumptuous brunch, they had an interaction discussion about several issues affecting them as single mothers, new mothers, single women and professionals.

Janet Nkubana, a participant at the event, for example, shared her experience on raising children into adulthood, setting rules, social media regulation for teenagers, as well as how she introduced house chores to her children.

Patience Ingabire, a new mother, also shared her challenges of balancing her job with raising her first born and the mixed emotions that she dealt with. She also shared that phone addiction at home, that has become unknowingly common for mothers raising a baby, could be dangerous, as it diverts the attention meant for the child away, and also gets them attracted to phones.

Christine Mukundwe, a mother, also shared how she learned the importance of creating time for herself, besides work and her family. She stressed that it is very important, in their busy schedules to create time for themselves to relax, for the sake of their mental health, while also being present mentally as well as emotionally.

Single ladies also expressed their concerns over societal and family pressure for them to get married and the challenges of breaking norms in their professions that are male-dominated.

Denise Benzige, a wife and mother encouraged them to set their priorities straight, go after them and love themselves first as to her, ‘age is number’. She also stressed that it’s high time, society respected women’s decisions.

The event also had a fundraising moment to support needy elderly women in Kigali. Events Horizon Ltd, will organise an event in their honour on Mother’s Day.

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