Tungteiya Women’s Association, an NGO, has held a Gender Model Family (GMF) summit for people in the Bunglung community in the Savelugu Municipality of the Northern Region to encourage husbands to live equitably with their wives by supporting each other with household chores.
The summit, which was under the Women Economic Advancement for Collective Transformation (WEACT) project, supported by Oxfam in Ghana with its partner Norsacc, was to work with women and their families to enhance economic empowerment, wellbeing and inclusive growth of women.
WEACT is a five-year project funded by Global Affairs Canada through Oxfam Quebec and seeks to address the systemic barriers to women’s economic empowerment.
The GMF summit sought to identify outstanding GMFs for recognition, honour and also provide opportunity to advocate a fair distribution of household chores to the larger community as part of the influencing component of the WEACT project.
Mr Hudu Abdallah, Project Officer of Tungteiya Women’s Association, speaking during the event, said the WEACT gender analysis and baseline report on the power dynamics that existed among GMF couples had shown that women were disadvantaged as compared to men in terms of access and control of resources, participation, decision-making and leadership.
He said GMF was a community gender transformative approach that sought to demystify misconceptions and perceptions of men on discriminatory gender norms that presented major obstacles to women’s advancement and progress in communities.
He said it was also to address unequal power relations between men and women as well as harmful gender norms by tackling the issues from their roots as well as to establish role model families through engaging both the wife and husband as change agents.
He encouraged the participants to keep up the fight to gain economic and social independence in their homes and the community at large.
Madam Fati Alhassan, Gender Officer at Oxfam in Ghana, urged women to continue to exhibit the skills they acquired for the project to transform their lives and to support their husbands to take very good care of their children.
Mr Felix Quartey, Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor at Norsaac, encouraged men to support their wives with domestic roles to promote healthy families in the northern sector.
Some of the women shared their experiences from the various trainings on the GMF programme learning exposures and how they were applying the knowledge in their houses and businesses.
Generally, almost all the women said they had gained a voice to talk both in the homes and at the community level and they felt respected now at home by their husbands and children because of the income they generated to support the family.
Awards were given to selected GMF families to encourage them to continue to support one another as husbands and wives.