Published on Mar 8, 2012
Rose Cunningham from MADRE's partner organization Wangki Tangni responds to the question: What does International Women's Day mean to you? She also discusses her organization's plans for the big day.
For me, International Women's Day is a commemorative event when many women can come together, sit down and reflect about the status of the organization and in particular about our lives.
In previous years we at Wangki Tangni have held marches and meetings. Really it is a date that we all remember and can recall all we have achieved. It is also for the population to be sensitized to the issue of women's rights in a comprehensive manner, learning about the rights that we have and the rights we should be using.
So this year we at Wangki Tangni have planned for International Women's Day to hold a march in our community to demand an end to the violence against women, which has been on the rise in recent years.
But for the 7th of March, the day before, we are going to meet for the whole afternoon with the administrators of justice in our community of Waspam. This involves the justice system of the state, but also involves the 15 Wihta of each of the neighborhoods in Waspam. The Wihta are the community judges, so we are going to meet with them and talk about the comprehensive law against violence against women.
This is a new law that was just approved, but it has not yet been published; we hope that this year, on this day, the president signs and publishes the law, which is the only thing that has yet to be done. But it is a very extensive law, a very good law for the fight against violence against women so the women of Wangki Tangni have initiated a process to propel a regional ordinance. In this ordinance is a regional law for how to implement the comprehensive law against violence against women, and articulating what are the elements that we want the law to strengthen. And for these elements we have been developing a series of meetings with different sectors—with the network of Indigenous women lawyers, with the authorities, with feminist women that know well the process of the law that's been developed in Managua so that we can also strengthen all the processes that we are developing for the creation of the law that we want.
MADRE has supported us in this so we are able to have a professional and a process for doing all these consultations and achieving and articulating all that the women have been demanding and being able to tell the regional adviser: enough, the comprehensive law against violence against women must be implemented.
But on this day we're celebrating as well...I'm sure we will dance at the end and we are going to have a great time because it's an opportunity for women to leave their homes and celebrate together, commemorating this day.