Young women in Zimbabwe have been urged to take up mining seriously to empower themselves.
Speaking during a tour of small-scale gold mining in the Makaha area in Mudzi by a group of women, RedLipstick Revolution founder Abigail Magwenzi said women need to be inspired by mining to move the country forward.
RedLipstick Revolution is an organisation that was formed four years ago with its main objective being to empower women in all sectors.
"We need women to be inspired by mining," Magwenzi said.
"If Zimbabwe is open for business, then we need to venture into mining and play our role in ensuring that our country achieves Vision 2030 to become a middle income economy."
A female small-scale miner, Vengesai Matapure of Shalom Mine, said miners faced challenges getting funding for their operations.
"We applaud the government for allowing us to venture into mining as women," Matapure said.
"We, however, need funding as women so that we realise our capacity.
"We need the funding to secure equipment, which is crucial in mining."
The group of women underwent vigorous training by officials from the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) on best environmental practices while the Mines ministry trained them on how to acquire licences and regularising their operations.
The organisation has so far secured 25 gold claims for its members.
EMA Mashonaland East provincial environmental education and publicity officer Astas Mabwe said: "As EMA we are working with women teaching them issues of compliance, for example, to acquire the EIA (environmental impact assessment certificates.
"This is crucial in that when they start their own businesses, they will be acquainted with all that is needed for smooth operation."