Women’s and Girls Empowerment
I raise up my voice—not so that I can shout, but so that those without a voice can be heard. … We cannot all succeed when half of us are held back. -Malala Yousafzai
Women’s and Girls Empowerment
Women are the backbone of Africa. They bear the children, care for their families, work the garden, and spend hours walking for water. Too often these responsibilities keep them from the education and opportunities that would improve the lives of their whole families. As girls come of age in poor areas of Africa, they do not have the luxury to think about who they could become or what they’d like to do. Their aspirations, hopes, and dreams are often swept away as they are consumed with performing chores.
“If we are going to see real development in the world then our best investment is WOMEN!”
They often have to drop out of school, marry soon after reaching puberty, and become young mothers — a vicious cycle that diminishes their economic potential and impacts their health.
Young Ugandan women and girls participate in the U-TOUCH intensive month-long Women’s Empowerment (WE) program to challenge traditional and limited gender roles and redefine women as valuable and powerful. Empowerment for women only happens when they can envisage a different life and consider themselves able and entitled to make decisions. Building on the solid foundation of women’s rights the participants of the WE Program develop self-esteem, leadership, life skills, business and technology skills for the Digital Age.
The beneficiaries of the WE Program have realized that life can be more than struggle and hardship. For the first time they see opportunity – then hope – then the confidence to set their own goals and develop a plan. Empowered with an array of effective life skills, access to technology and surrounded by positive support these women begin a successful journey toward economic freedom. With their U-TOUCH certification the graduates of the WE Program have started successful businesses, been employed or have been promoted. With their increased income they can not only meet basic needs like clean water, food and shelter they have an improved capacity to afford better healthcare and provide access to education for her family.
It is extraordinarily exciting to witness Ugandan women having access to technology and immediately redefining what is possible. Learning computer skills and accessing unlimited information on the Internet shatters their notion of what they can do – the sky is now the limit. The Women’s Empowerment program unlocks their hidden potential and the impact is profound and sustainable! Empowering women changes communities and economies.
U-TOUCH Women’s Empowerment Program transforms women’s lives in real and meaningful ways. Outcomes can be measured in many quantifiable metrics, such an increased economic status, however other outcomes tend to be less calculable, though equally impactful in terms of quality of life. Aisha, a mother of four, provides such an example. Prior to her enrollment in the U-TOUCH Women’s Empowerment Program, she was living a miserable life. Her husband was always mistreating and battering her. She was a victim of Gender-Based Violence, She was also unemployed and she could not provide basic needs for herself and her children. Hope followed by confidence came when she attained the knowledge and skills to overcome gender-based violence, to understand women’s rights, entrepreneurship and handcraft skills. Fortified with self-assurance and an action plan Aisha engaged the authorities who helped and counseled her and the husband to stop violating her rights. They are now living in harmony with her husband and children. Aisha is now gainfully employed.
Over a thousand women have graduated the U-TOUCH Women’s Empowerment program. These women are now teachers, politicians, computer teachers, software developers, advocates for girl childhood education, government administrators, fashion designers, caterers, nurses, professors, pharmacists, (and so many more) are economically self-reliant, successfully taking care of themselves, their family and contributing to the community.
our other programs
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women's land rights
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