The 2013 Women’s Wellness and Empowerment Conference participants have been selected! We’re excited to invite 26 women to participate in this year’s conference. Thank you to the numerous Peace Corps Volunteers who nominated these strong, passionate women. Our participants represent 10 different ethnicities in Togo, speak over 17 distinct languages, and range in age from 21 to 50. The majority of these women work as farmers, housewives, or merchants. Additionally, they demonstrated leadership through work with organizations like Red Cross, Village Savings and Loans Associations, churches and other community groups.
When asked about problems facing women in their communities, participants cited illiteracy, keeping young girls home to help at the house rather than sending them to school, and lack of respect from men. One woman stated that “people don’t like when women speak out” and another declared that women are responsible for an unfair portion of the workload in families, calling it “economic violence”.
These are some of the many issues we plan to discuss during the 2013 conference. Through educational seminars, group discussions, and skill-building sessions, we hope to further develop these women as leaders and agents of change in their respective communities.
With a little over a monthleft until WWEC 2013, preparations are well under way. If you haven’t already donated, please visit our donation site. We are close to reaching our fundraising goal and making this conference a success!