After two months of needs assessments, discussion groups, and planning sessions with Chief Ekumbe Thompson Itoe, GCI has started its implementation of the second round of CAM’s workshops in Mofako Bekondo!
This second phase kicked off last week with GCI’s first-ever gender equality workshop, which Tessa, Daniella, and Evelyn delivered to the executives on the Women’s Council on Wednesday. Due to the barrage of rain the night before, the roads going up to Mofako were a mess—so much, in fact, that some staff members took a spill on the muddy path through a nearby cocoa farm. (Luckily, everybody brought a change of clothes, given the inclement weather.)
The workshop was a huge success. The women positively glowed as they engaged in the workshop ice-breaker, which had each participant naming a quality that made her a good leader. The room buzzed with enthusiasm as GCI reviewed women’s rights and stereotyping/discrimination—topics that roused the women who had discussed time and time again the discrimination they met in matters such as political participation, land inheritance, and village development activities. As the workshop drew to a close, the women started to brainstorm how they would be more vocal about their rights in the future, including Mami Secretary Mattchia Hannah’s declaration that the women would stop paying the village development fund until they could have a say in its allocation.
On Sunday, Tessa and Daniella returned to Mofako to give the Gender Equality Workshop to the Gentlewomen Social Group, a village association of both men and women devoted to carrying out development projects for the community. The workshop’s message of “Gender Equality to Promote Community Development” was especially relevant to the Gentlewomen, since the group relies on gender equality and unity to carry out its projects. So, despite the fact that Tessa and Daniella had no back-up translator in the event of their newly-acquired Pidgin skills faltering, the workshop was another success. The Gentlewomen members engaged in the discussion sessions, asked questions, and especially enjoyed participating in the Stereotype/Discrimination skits.
This Wednesday, the team will return to Mofako to deliver two workshops: a mediation refresher workshop to the members of the Traditional Council and the gender equality workshop to the village’s General Assembly of women and girls.