At least 2,000 residents, majority of them women, from different parts of Bumbogo Sector in Gasabo District, yesterday, celebrated women achievements over the past years.
Dubbed, “Special Celebration of Bumbogo Women’s Day,” the event was organised in partnership with the National Women’s Council (CNF) and Women for Women International (WFWI).
It featured various activities, including showcasing of agribusiness products and handicrafts, dance and musical performances, and a leaders’ session.
It was celebrated under the theme, “Yes We Can.”
Speaking during the event, Languida Nyirabahire, the district vice mayor in charge of social affairs, lauded women for their incredible work, but also encouraged them to never stop until they achieve what they want.
“I want to thank you (women) for your remarkable achievements. I want to also appreciate the work of men and their thoughts for having understood the value of women. Everyone knows that the government has done a lot in ensuring that women and men are equal in all ways,” Nyirabahire said.
“Women in this sector have done a lot in transforming their lives, their families and their communities. Over the past years, you could hardly find women in agribusinesses, handicraft, and other fields. Today, that perception has changed and women in Bumbogo work and perform even much better than some men.”
Nyirabahire said most women had joined cooperatives and other women groups, where they get to learn from each other and work together to create income generating activities which has seen them move out of poverty.
Antoinette Uwimana, the country director of WFWI, shared the organisation’s experience in working with women in different parts of the country, particularly Bumbogo Sector.
“In Gasabo, we have been working with more than 1,300 women who were trained in vocational skills, including weaving and basket bidding, tailoring, cooperative management,” she said.
“They also get to learn about other subjects like women empowerment, writing and reading, saving, human rights, hygiene, among others. After one year, we also provide them with small capital to venture into different activities,” Uwimana said.
“This is part of efforts toward empowering women in different endeavours of life.”
Dativa Musabyeyezu, one of the beneficiaries, said the training from WFWI had been helpful.
“We were poor, but they trained us in different trades. We started as five women; after graduating we decided to invest in agribusiness. Today, we are 32 women whose lives and families have been transformed. Our activities have also benefited the communities we live in. I should say we now pay health insurance, we are teaching hygiene, and have embraced development programmes,” said Musabyeyezu.
During the event, 600 women opened bank accounts, while another 1,300 are waiting to be registered to start one year skills training.
All these are part of broader efforts to ensure that all people are equipped with skills and knowledge that will help them to transform their lives, according Nyirabahire.