Inspiring inclusion: International Women’s Day 2024 celebrations

News - 2024-03-12
“It's crucial for us to create a world where women are empowered to take leadership roles in their communities and beyond."
Graffiti artist with a graffiti of women

Inspired by the theme of this year's International Women's Day, "Inspire Inclusion" and in alignment with the UN's theme "Invest in women: Accelerate progress" our regional office Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA), in collaboration with its partners, hosted the International Women’s Day celebration at the Nairobi Arboretum on March 8, 2024. The event, attended by 272 participants, brought together women and allies from diverse backgrounds.

The event's main theme was inspiration through storytelling and provided a platform for women leaders in different spaces to share, inspire, and demonstrate unwavering dedication against all odds towards advocating for gender equality.  

Senator Crystal Asige telling her story
Senator Crystal Asige narrates her life journey.

During his speech, the ESA Regional Manager Jackson Obare, highlighted the role of ForumCiv in advancing gender equality and strengthening inclusive governance and democracy.

“As we continue to invest in women across the country, we have invested and dedicated approximately 35% of our resources to gender equality, this amounts to SEK 32.6 million,” said Jackson.  

With the recent femicide cases in Kenya, Jackson also led a moment of silence to remember the victims of femicide and call to action towards ending femicide and creating safe spaces for girls and women across the country.

The Head of Section for Kenya Development Cooperation at the Embassy of Sweden, Annika Otterstedt, highlighted the strength of women worldwide and expressed concern about societies that still view men as superior to women. She also highlighted challenges that continue to hold back women, such as harmful cultural practices, gender-based violence, and lack of proper maternal health, which pose a significant challenge to gender equality.

Annika Otterstedt from the Swedish Embassy Kenya
The Head of Section for Kenya Development Cooperation at the Embassy of Sweden, Annika Otterstedt made her speech.

Annika stressed the need for equal rights and political participation for women and the importance of societal structures that enable women to take charge of their lives.

“It's crucial for us to create a world where women are empowered to take leadership roles in their communities and beyond. We also need to continuously work toward a more equitable and just society for girls and women,” said Annika Otterstedt.  

Florence Jemutai, the Deputy Director of the Department of Gender and Affirmative Action, Hon. Tiyah Galgalo a former woman representative for Isiolo County and the current National Land Commissioner, and Grace Kamau, a representative from the Office of the Women Representative Nairobi County all graced the occasion.  

Other highlights in the event included captivating artivism performances, a live graffiti artwork focused on the day's theme, a political spa by Badili Africa, legal aid services provided by the Legal Resources Foundation, and a compelling puppetry show by Buni Media to raise awareness about femicide. 

Buni Media end femicide puppet show
End femicide puppet show by Buni Media.

At the end of the event, we recognized Senator Crystal Asige, Bina Maseno and Roseline Orwa for being a source of inspiration to young women, women living with disabilities, widows, and women from all walks of life.  

Women receiving a recognition award
(From left to right) Roseline Orwa, Florence Chemutai, Bina Maseno, and Chelimo Njoroge


Watch the event

The event was livestreamed on ForumCiv’s YouTube channel and Citizen TV Kenya

Watch the sights and sounds here: #IWD2024

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