A Non-Governmental Organisation, Hope Inspired Foundation for Women and Youths (HIFWY) has held a summit to create a safe space for women and girls with disabilities, as well as to discuss sexuality and sexuality education as matter of relevance
Penpushing reports that, the one-day virtual summit in collaboration with the Disability Rights Fund (DRF) involved number of stakeholders which include journalists, technical partners, heads of Non-Governmental Organisations and Penpushing Media among others
The summit tagged, ’National Knowledge Sharing and Learning’, also addressed issued such as resource mobilization, raising of funds, mentorship and leadership skills training, while number of activities of the foundation in the last one year were reviewed
Penpushing further reports that, the summit identifies the activities of the Hope Inspired Foundation for Women and Youths (HIFWY), as include: advocacy visits to key MDAs in Lagos State, such as Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health, Ministry of youths and Social Development and Ministry of Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.
These include: consultative meeting with women and girls with disabilities, town hall meeting with parents/care-givers of People With Disability, community leaders and members, religious leaders, which took place in Ikorodu community with other participants from Alimosho community, Surulere, somolu, badagry joining virtually.
Penpushing also reports that, other activities as enumerated include: development of the reports on the appraisal of policies/reports/programmes on comprehensive sexuality education, training of teachers from local educational institutions on the use of the inclusive sexuality education tool.
The summit equally reviewed activities such as monthly social media engagement with women and girls with disabilities, teaching them to self-advocate for their sexuality and sexuality education rights, two media round table events to sensitise the media and the public on how best to portray People With Disabilitypwds and encourage reportage on sexuality education for women/girls with disabilities in Lagos State.
Penpushing further reports that Head/Director of Journalists Against AIDS, Miss Olayide Akani, who doubles as technical partner, an invited guest in her remarks explained that, the essence of the summit was to scale the project
‘We are sharing what has transpired over the one year. It has been challenging and a learning process for we at Hope Inspired Foundation. We wish to scale this project which is the reason we are having this summit’, she added
Penpushing also reports that Executive Director at Cedarseed Foundation, Lois Auta, in her good will message said it is important and necessary that People With Disability has right to be treated equally and have access to basic amenities of life
“Women and girls with disabilities have a right to many things including education, health and many other things accrued to all humanbeings particularly women. It is our right to be treated equally and have access to basic amenities and infrastructures.
‘The sympathy is not needed but equality is very vital. What we need to share together is to eliminate this problems; of addressing attitudinal and institutional problems. We need the resource mobilization team to help in raising funds for availability’, she emphasised.
Penpushing reports that, on her own part, Executive Director of Faecare Foundation and coordinator at Boldhearts Initiative, Freky Andrew said women need and girls need to know their rights, stressing that those with disabilities must have access to sexuality education
“We need to know our right so that we can self-advocate for our rights. We must ensure that young girls with disabilities have access to sexuality education. In our numbers we can get the messages across, let’s work together”.
Penpushing further reports that, the Board Chair and the founder of Hope Inspired foundation for women and Youths Ejiro Sharon Okotie popularly known as Crystal Inspire shared the key learnings and impact over the year.
“A lot of brainstorming went into the project and it just feels like yesterday, here we are sharing our learnings. There’s a need for more collaborations in other to advance the cause. One of the learnings is that there is still a need for more research’.
‘One key impact is that the Lagos State Ministry of Education have received the improved sexuality education tool to be adapted into the state’s curriculum. We are more than happy to share the manual with organisation interested’, she added.
‘Another key learning is the need to sustain. Creating a safe space for women and girls with disabilities to discuss sexuality and sexuality education. For parents and caregivers to learn how to communicate effectively. Learning to create more spaces among our community for pair to pair learning in a positive way”,Okotie said.
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