KAMPALA – Young people’s involvement in gender issues is to take centre stage at this year’s Makerere University organized Gender Identity Week, starting on Monday.
Organisers announced at the press conference on Saturday that the Gender Identity Week will focus on how to young people will be mobilized to own the women’s movement.
Organised by Makerere University School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS) in partnership with the Embassy of Sweden, the Gender Identity Week will take place from 2nd to 7th March 2020.
The five-day event will take place at the Auditorium, College of Business and Management Sciences.
According to Associate Professor Consolata Kabonesa, the principal investigator of the Gender Mainstreaming project, the week aims at facilitating dialogue among university staff, students, development partners, development practitioners, the media and other stakeholders on the topical issues related to gender and empowerment.
“We are looking at generational equality where we are reaching out to young people to take a centre stage in women’s movement,” said Prof Kabonesa told the media on Saturday.
She added that this year they are focusing on Generational Equality as a way of responding to the International Women’s Day celebrations running under the theme —‘I am Generation Equality: Realising Women Rights’.
“We are involving the young people because we believe without them nothing can go on. Since we are growing old and soon leaving the gender, we need these young people to continue pushing the initiative so that we bring gender equality to reality.”
At the same media briefing, Associate Professor Sarah Ssali revealed why the gender identity week was important as far as gender mainstreaming is concerned.
Mrs Ssali, the Dean of the School of Women and Gender said the week has enabled the School to show the different ways gender inequalities can be addressed.
“For example, before we started the gender identity weeks, they were talking about gender equality as femininities, and with this perception, females suffered a lot with discrimination but through the gender identity weeks, people come here and get to know that gender is not all about women, gender is relational and if we are to tackle gender inequality for a gender equal world where do we need to focus.
“So the gender identity week is very important for focusing on what the school is doing and how it is meeting its quest in a fight against gender inequality in this country,” said Prof Ssali.
Throughout the week, the event will be running under different subthemes such as ‘Different shades of empowerment in Uganda’, ‘Strategies for ending sexual harassment in institutions of higher learning, ‘Students experiences of university environment , ‘Gender spaces include performing gender through music and ‘Wikipedia and women’.
Key note speakers will include among others the Namasole (Queen mother) of Buganda Kingdom, Florence Lwanga from Nabaggereka Foundation, performing artiste Joanita Kawalya, religious leaders, academia, Ministry of Gender officials as well as students from other universities.