The National Association of Youth Organisations (NAYO) values the participation of young women in developmental processes. Young women are leaders, stakeholders, stockholders, and change-makers; when spaces are available and obstacles are removed.
NAYO has a Gender and Mainstreaming Department responsible for policy and implementation. Currently, the department is running a program called One Voice Our Voice. The program was initially launched by NAYO in partnership with the World Bank Country Office, it seeks to foster the side-by-side concept, giving a sustainable voice, at the same time creating a platform for young women to exchange, learn, develop, lobby and lead. The One Voice our Voice falls under the broader #LeaveNoYouthBehind initiative. The One Voice Our Voice during the 2018 Harmonized Elections brought together young women from different political parties in partnership with UNDP under the Joint Youth Liaison Committee, where Political Part Youth Wings converged facilitated by NAYO for various developmental issues and solution-oriented interventions. NAYO works closely with the Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe to champion young women’s rights.
Young women face an array of challenges from the community, national and international levels, gender-based violence, political violence, lack of opportunities, and space to take leading roles in decision making. The Covid-19 pandemic has worsened the situation; the rate of sexual abuse has been reported to be rising. As we celebrate International Women’s Day, as a country we must introspect on how best we empower young women in all spheres of development as enshrined in Section 20 of the Constitution, that in political, social, economic, and environmental.
Source: National Association of Youth Organisations (NAYO)