Oku-Elak is widely known as one of the communities of the North-West-Region of Cameroon that holds tradition at a very high esteem. Especially when it comes what is considered sacred the exclusion of women was obligatory. A gender analysis (COMINSUD, 2010) revealed that women were forbidden to be members of the Oku Traditional Council (TC).
With the changing times, women’s participation and contribution in all spheres of life could not escape their presence in the TC. The community realized that women play an important role in addressing women related cases.
Now the present Fon of Oku together with the 15 male members of the TC fully accepted female membership in the TC. The following criteria was placed to select these female members
- Should be at least 45 years of age
- Should be fully of Oku origin
- Should be influential to move community development
discussing in the TC meeting
Oku Traditional Council with its six new female members
The situation of vulnerable people in our local communities from observation, is a serious call for concern reason why some COMINSUD staff within the week, are gathering information to establish a data base on the situation of vulnerable people in the Benakuma, Wum, Ndu, Ako, Kumbo, Bali, Babessi and Oku council areas for the implementation of the Democracy and Empowerment of women (DEW) phase V project which aims at enhancing participation of communities in the decentralization process in collaboration with their various councils for effective local development benefiting the disadvantaged population.
We will keep you posted as activities unfold within this project…
Following the visit and handover of environmental educational materials by Anton Barske, Mayor of Gorinchem council Netherland, to some schools within the Ecokids project, the boxes for the preservation of these materials was distributed by some COMINSUD staff members to the various schools concerned in the presence of the Environmental club coordinators and
They were all amazed by the content of the boxes, but what caught their attention was the wooden ”Mango tree” with its fruits on which the expectations, action plans and guide for a school garden or environment were inscribed.
Teachers of the Presbytarian Primary School Mankon checking the handbook and the educational material.
Linda Ngobesing from COMINSUD is discussing the usage of the ecokids box with teachers from the Baptist High School Mankon
COMINSUD being an organisation that is equally concerned with issues
related to women organised this event bringing together women from media, health and educational institutions to identify the challenges they face in their various domains as well as in their homes and communities. They listed out reasons why women and girls face these challenges and finally ideas on how to address it in their various communities and professional domains.
DEW Project: In February and March a series of sensitization workshops will take place. Out of 25 Local Governance Centers (LGCs) there are some whose capacity still seems to be low. The first workshop took place on the 26./27.02.2015 in Santa. The members of the LGC Santa were informed on the origin of the DEW project and the role and responsiblities of an LGC. The revised “Local Governance Center Guide” (2015 edition) has been distributed amongst the LGC members. Furthermore an introduction to the LGC focus areas (promoting respect of Human Rights, promoting good governance practices, promoting the empowerment of women and girl children) was given by the facilitätors of COMINSUD. For all the topics case studies have been elaborated. The next step for the LGC Santa is now to develop their own action plan for 2015, and for COMINSUD to accompany closely these activities.
Participants of the LGC workshop in Santa
The mayor of Gorinchem council in The Netherlands, Mr Barske accompanied by two of his colleagues, Tom Hoogerwerf and Gerda Bosdriesz, visited four schools involved in the Eco-kids project to observe what these pupils and students have done so far.
While on the field, the mayor expressed his satisfaction about the Micro initiatives implemented by the schools with very little support.
During the hand over ceremony at the COMINSUD office where they were warmly received by Mrs Chambi Julie; the board chair, the mayor explained the use of the educational materials he handed over which included four posters and wooden mango trees with their different contents.
The event was presided at by the Lord mayor for the Bamenda II council, Mrs Balik Awa Fidelis.
The 16 days of activism against gender based violence is an international campaign that was started by the Centre for Women Global Leadership (CWGL) in 1991. The 16 Days runs from November 25, (International Day on No violence Against Women) December 10,(International Human Rights Day) to symbolically link violence against women and human rights and to emphasize that such violence is a violation of human rights. This 16 day period also highlights other significant dates including December 1, which is World AIDS Day, and December 6, which marks the Anniversary of the Montreal Massacre in 1989, when 14 women students were massacred by a lone gun-man opposed to the affirmative action policies promoted by feminism at the University of Montreal.
This campaign hopes to raise awareness about gender-based violence as a human rights issue at the local, national, regional and international level.
This year’s theme is “Let’s challenge militarism and end violence against women”
COMINSUD together with hercommunity based volunteers in 22 Local Governance Centres (LGCs) in the North West Region will focus on ending violence against women and girls through community education using round table discussions, street walks, drama and awareness raising over community radio stations. Orange ribbons, posters and banners will be used join the “ORANGE YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD CAMPAIGN” to fight violence against women
Since it began, the 16 Days of Activism has been used as an organizing strategy by women’s groups to call for the elimination of violence against women by raising awareness about gender based violence as a human rights issue at local, regional and international levels; strengthening local work around violence against women, demonstrating the solidarity of women around the world organizing against women and creating tools to pressure governments to implement promises made to eliminate violence against women.