Blue Gold’s workshop on Empowering Women for Economic Development.
A workshop session titled “Empowering Women for Economic Development” was hosted by Blue Gold at Gobeshona 6 Conference, a four-day conference organized by the International Centre for Climate Change And Development (ICCCAD) at Independent University, Bangladesh (IUB) today. This session was chaired by Sakia Hasan. The presenters or the panelist of this session were Ms. Kitty Bentvelsen, Ms. Roksana Begum, Mr. Juel Mahmud, Research Officer, ICCCAD: Coastal Water Management.
The session about Empowering Women for Economic Development and Resilience was very interactive and interesting, delivered collaboratively by both Ms. Roksana Begum and Ms. Kitty Bentvelson. Ms. Kitty quoted “Equal opportunity and equal chances should be provided for all.” Women should have access to resources or information, networking, participate in decision making, take part in leadership and other training sessions. The challenges or barriers to women empowerment were women lacked information, conservative cultural issues, lack of market linkages to take decisions, the workload was increased as they perform both household and field work. The Blue Gold Program conducted many training sessions in order to empower women so that they are knowledgeable, have access to information and gain the opportunity to lead. Marjina Begum was one of the testitomies, she told her story about how the leadership training sessions from Blue Gold helped her gain knowledge and became a Union Parishad member. This project is conducted to help empower women, increase women leadership, mobility, networking, promote well being and quality of life and also resist domestic violence. Ms. Roksana Begum quoted “In some areas women were not permitted to go outside the house after sunset.” It was one of the difficulties faced when conducting training sessions. Lastly, the speakers engaged the audience in seeking the answers of some questions about what could be done more to empower women.
The speaker Mr. Juel Mahmud discussed briefly about the Vulnerability and Adaptation Practice in the Coastal and River Bank Area. He professed that scarcity of water is the main problem in the coastal regions, as saline water is more prominent in that area. Hazardous events such as floods, landslides and erosion cause a lot of challenges for the people. In conclusion, his research conducted the results about the causes and the vulnerability in these coastal and river bank areas.
Farhana Akter Nitu is an Environmental Science and English Language Teaching student at Independent University, Bangladesh