Lusaka, Zambia—IFFAMPAC was honored to be a key speaker and to participate in this year’s International Women’s Day Celebrations, which was themed “Equal Rights, Equal Opportunities and Progress for All.” The celebrations were organized by the Great Lakes Women Refugees Association, a family association in Zambia, and were held on March 6, 2010. These celebrations were held at Church of Mary Immaculate, which was changed from Pope Square Cathedral of Child Jesus.
Among the participants were government officials from the Zambian Ministry of Home Affairs, Peace Centre Director Mrs. Mutale Kafula, a representative from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, and refugees. IFFAMPAC was represented by its Africa Representative, Mr. Evans Lombe.
Mr. Lombe called upon women refugees in Zambia, and in Africa at large, to never lose hope and courage in their efforts to attain equal rights, equal opportunities and progress. Mr. Lombe also encouraged women refugees who were in attendance to be driven by a character of selflessness and togetherness in order to achieve that which they desire.
Mr. Lombe also emphasized the need to integrate women in the development of social structure, as a way of affording them equality and opportunities to reach their potential.
IFFAMPAC’s focus at this event was to instill a sense of hope and friendship among women refugees who are part of surviving families of missing persons from armed conflicts.
The event reinforced the principle that family associations, which IFFAMPAC establishes and works through, are a major cornerstone through which families, especially women and children, are able to attain a unified voice. Family associations are also platforms to advocate women’s rights and equal opportunities by promoting and supporting women’s best interests.
Women in Africa have reached a turning point. They have realized that they must define their rights and opportunities. By so doing, they will be valued as partners in social-economic development, instead of being perceived as victims, unable to become productive members of society.
IFFAMPAC posed a challenge to women to hope with action if the reality of their desires is to be attained.
For more details and pictures, see the Event Release.