On the 7th of September 2018, Community Youth Development Trust (CYDT) convened a meeting with young women from the oldest residential area in Gwanda – Jahunda township. The meeting was meant to equip, empower and capacitate young women with knowledge and life skills they can employ in bettering their current situation which has destroyed their self-esteem, personal dignity and further expose them to sexual assault from the night walkers as they sometime sleep outside in sharks made of plastics. As an organization that promotes and supports the engagement of marginalized groups in governance processes, we then stand in the gap for such groups who are vulnerable and susceptible to human right violations and other forms of abuse. Owing to the deliberation of the meetings held at the Red Cross Small hall on the above mentioned date, young women from Ward 4 made the following demands which they shared with the Mayor of Gwanda and the ward Councilor.
- That the ward councilor engages and involves young women and get to understand their concerns in regards to the state of houses and the public toilets they are made to use.
- To have the councilor including young women representatives in his ward development committee so that young women issues are represented in the ward development plan as well as in budgetary processes.
- We also appeal to the city fathers to have ward four Jahunda redevelopment project prioritized and the home ownership clearly communicates the role of the new home owners and give them autonomy of the property so that they are able to develop them and make them worthy being used by human beings.
- We acknowledge the economic situation facing the local authority, however we demand to be consulted and constantly engage on issues affecting the ward as we are the mostly affected as is some us sleep on sharks made of plastics which is not safe at all.
- More-so we hope that the ward councilor together with the mayor will constantly conduct feedback meetings on the demands made thereof and also work towards improving water and sanitation in the ward. Our toilets and bath rooms needs to be attended to as a matter of urgency.
- We pray that the current leadership shall act on our demands and not keep us hoping that our situation shall improve while they know nothing is being done.
Community Youth Development Trust (CYDT) was formed in 2012 with the vision of promoting young women and men participation and engagement in decision making, based on democracy and a respect of human rights by bringing together young people from different social, economic and political backgrounds. To combat these challenges faced by young women and men within the province of Matabeleland South, the organization focuses mainly on improving youth capacities so as to promote self-sustenance, lobby and advocacy on constitutionalism so as to realize a community young women and or men led advocacy.
Source: Community Youth Development Trust (CYDT)