The Young Women’s Christian Association Zambia (YWCA) was formed in 1957 and is now operational countrywide. It is a membership, non-partisan, non-governmental organization dedicated to the empowerment of communities, especially women, youth and children to realize their potential to contribute to a just society through rights-based approaches and sustainable interventions.
YWCA envisions a safe, gender-sensitive Zambia with equal opportunities and good health for all. The organization's key interventions include promoting gender equity and equality, and empowerment of women in all spheres of life, zero tolerance to gender-based violence and child marriage, and promoting sexual reproductive health rights.
Strengthening gender committees
Under the Women@Work Campaign, Young Women’s Christian Association Zambia (YWCA) implements a project together with the General Agriculture and Plantation Workers Union of Zimbabwe (GAPWUZ). The aim is to promote decent working conditions and eliminate gender inequalities in the horticulture sector in Zambia and Zimbabwe by strengthening gender committees at the farms.
Gender committees are key as an independent space for women to identify and protect their own culture, where they can speak out about concerns and identify strategies to engage with and change the male-dominant culture.
The project is enhancing awareness on the importance of gender equality in the workplace and the dangers of labor rights abuses; promoting women's labor rights through formation of networks that provide moral and psychological support; and is advocating for an enabling policy and legal framework and its effective implementation that is protective of women in the horticulture sector. Gender committees also offer safe spaces for women to discuss matters of concern amongst each other.
Activities consist of providing targeted skills training to newly installed committees members, organizing engagement meetings with farm management, and conducting educational programs on topics of sexual harassment and workers’ rights.