DIALOGUE – Many women around the world are working through a variety of grassroots initiatives to improve land rights for women. Yet the access to their land is often insecure. During this evening, you will hear stories by women who are involved in different initiatives at the grassroots level. What lessons can we learn and how can they generate ideas for more action on the ground?
The recognition and protection of women’s equal rights to use, access and control land are crucial for women’s empowerment, increased food production, healthy families and better educated children. However, systematic structures of oppression are often expressed through land relations.
This evening we will present stories, film and photography from successful grassroots movements in Africa and the Netherlands on women’s rights to land. With the audience and the Dutch Council of Women, our speakers will discuss their experiences and the lessons we can learn from the role of local champions and the importance of building movements and international solidarity.
- Ellen Matupi. Rural Women Assembly & National Smallholder Farmers Association, Malawi. She was at the forefront of the successful Women2Kilimanjaro Initiative, a mobilization of rural women from across Africa to guarantee and strengthen their land rights. Ellen shares her experience from the Dutch funded Women’s Land Rights in Africa program.
- Willemien Koning. Dutch Representative for UN Women 2018. Chair of the Dutch Federation of Agriculture and Horticulture ‘Women and Business’. In October, she addressed the UN General Assembly to argue for gender equality and empowering rural women. Willemien is nominated for the Women of Europe Awards 2018 in the category ‘Women in Action’.
- Catherine Gatundu. International Policy and Campaign Manager at ActionAid International Kenya. She shares how the Women2Kilimanjaro Initiative has been able to actualize women’s land rights in Africa and is now being translated into policy commitments by several national governments and the African Union.
- Jolke de Moel from Future Farmers. She runs a vegetable farm in Amersfoort, the Netherlands, She will talk about the difficulties that new farmers in the Netherlands face to secure access to land and the collective efforts by farmers and citizens to change the situation.
- Imke Greven. Policy Advisor Land Rights and Coordinator for ‘Land learning journey on women’s land rights in Myanmar’ at Oxfam Novib. Imke reports back about this event which showcases the impact of strong solidarity across continents and the need for platforms for women to share their lived experiences.
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