We threw our challenges behind into oblivion and focused our energies into the future – a long walk to rural women emancipation.
On 8 March, the world celebrated International Women’s Day, themed: “Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change”. Inkwenkwezi Youth observed this day by organising a successful Health and Wellness Day. The event was held at Prudhoe community in Peddie, South Africa.
Over 200 participants took part. The Health and Wellness Day activities included an Inclusive Endurance Walk, Race Walk and physical education ranging from aerobics to exercises. The Inclusive Endurance Walk has seen participation by strategic vulnerable groups – elderly, youth, children, people with disabilities and women; whilst the Race Walk was designed for participation of youth and women.
While International Women’s Day addresses women’s issues in general, the wellness event was utilised as an opportune platform to address the following specific global goals: good health and well-being, gender equality and sustainable cities and communities.
Within the South African context, the event addressed National Development Plan outcomes – rural development, nation building, social cohesion and health as this day falls within ‘Human Rights Month’. Women from Prudhoe community walk 20 kilometres every day to access healthcare facilities. On their journey to accessing healthcare services women may be mugged and fall victims of rape. Mama Nowandisile Breakfast, 71, had this to say: “Today we threw our challenges behind into oblivion and focused our energies into the future – a long walk to rural women emancipation.”
One of the primary objectives of the event was to attract people from all spheres of society. Vuyani Modotyeni, a young person with intellectual disability said: “Inkwenkwezi Youth is but one organisation that mainstreams young people with intellectual disabilities in its sporting programmes. We now feel part of a whole”. The event was supported by National Lotteries Commission, Clover and Asics South Africa.