Pic by Moses Nyirenda
Lilongwe, January 22, 2019. Oxfam-Malawi and Girls Empowerment Network (GENET) say they are committed to promoting women and girls' rights in the country in order for them to achieve their goals and remain self-reliant in the future.
The two non-governmental organizations are working in partnership in promoting the rights of women and girls through a campaign called Ending Violence Against Women and Girls (EVAWG) which has been implemented in Dowa District since 2016 and is still progressing.
Oxfam-Malawi Country Director, John Makina told Malawi News Agency (Mana) recently in Dowa that, his organization aims at providing awareness to girls and women in the communities so that they should understand their rights.
"As an organization, we focus on bringing awareness to the citizens especially women and girls so that they should know how to defend their rights in various places including in education and health sectors," Makina said.
He added that they are also working under transformative women leadership which aims to facilitate the reduction of violence against women and girls and it also promotes girls' right to education by making them remain in school.
Makina said his organization targets to make sure that girls are completing their primary and secondary education.
Recently, Oxfam-Malawi in partnership with Comic Relief, Oxfam Ireland and GENET conducted a progress check activity in Traditional Authority (T/A) Kayembe in Dowa District, where it was revealed that 76 girls were withdrawn from early marriages in the district.
Senior Chief Kayembe who is also EVAWG ambassador told Mana that the girls were withdrawn from marriage using by-laws which were formulated by chiefs and community members of her area with support from GENET and Oxfam Malawi; she said that the by-laws help to safe guard the rights of women and girls in her area.
"With the help from Oxfam and GENET, we set the by-laws which we use to eradicate child marriages and promote rights of girls and women.
Through the by-laws we have managed to withdraw 76 girls from early marriages and we sent them back to school for them to complete their education," she explained.
ENET Executive Director, Faith Phiri said her organization is committed to advancing the rights of girls and women in Dowa District and in the country at large, saying that their plan is to eradicate violence among women and girls in the country.