Leadership Program: Creating Community Leaders
Project Harvest works with women who live in poverty, are marginalized, malnourished and experience discrimination. And yet, on a daily basis, these women still confront the need to care for and feed their families. Project Harvest, in concert with these women, has created a formation program which, while definitely focusing on improving food security for their families, also addresses the exclusion and inequality that women deal with daily.
This program aims to equip groups of women with the capacity
- to know and exercise their rights as women in their very challenging environment;
- to provide them with space for reflection as groups and with the opportunity to develop, together, their analytical skills;
- to strengthen their organizational capacity through their partnership/participation with Project Harvest so that they are able to create a sustainable, organized «action structure» such as a Board, a Committee or an Association. Through that structure, they are then able to better represent themselves, their families and better advocate for their needs in community decision-making bodies.
Some of the Results
The focus on forming these community leaders strengthens the revised community structures. These leaders are then able to articulate, solicit and realize their own development projects.
In 2017, 74 workshops were held with over 1,439 attendees. Participants have discussed themes of community leadership, gender equality, violence, oppression and discrimination, relationships of power in their society, community, and homes.
Women have grown personally and have acquired a deeper understanding and awareness:
- of the roots of their reality and the need to change it,
- of who exercises power in the family and community and how that power is used to control women,
- of the fact that violence against women, traditionally accepted, is not normal.
Examples of new priorities:
A special request made by and for the women that local health centers provide information on family planning and help them identify the danger signs in a pregnancy.