Over a two-day period, Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) and the Research and Advocacy Unit (RAU) conducted community engagement meetings in Cowdray Park and Gwanda Town, as a means of creating demand for young women on devolution. Young women who were represented during the meetings are beneficiaries of a Devolution Training that took place in March 2019, in Bulawayo.
The aim of these meetings was to offer feedback on what has been done since community working groups were identified both in Bulawayo and Gwanda, and to plan for future activities that ought to enhance awareness on Devolution.
The concept of Devolution as enshrined in the Zimbabwean Constitution, Amendment 20, recognizes the right of communities to manage their own affairs and to further their development. In this light, community working groups advocate for the implementation of Section 264 of the Constitution, paying attention to how Municipals can lead to improved and engendered access to public social service delivery.
“We have designed a pamphlet that is in IsiNdebele and English that is currently making rounds on social media,” said Bridgette Ncube, a devolution champion from Gwanda Town. “As we had been encouraged to innovate and be creative when raising awareness on devolution, we noticed we can reach more audiences with this kind of pamphlet.”
The designed pamphlet outlines the benefits of implementing devolution in marginalized communities.
In implementing devolution, community working groups should ensure that they include their local leaders in the process.
“Members of our community don’t want to be associated with anything that our Councilor spearheads, and that is the fear that we have in trying to raise awareness on devolution,” said Sandra Ndlovu, a devolution champion from Bulawayo.
In future events lined up are community outreach programs that will enable devolution champions to do face to face interactions with residents from their wards.
Source: Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD)