Rural women hold the key to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), NGEC Chairperson Winfred Lichuma has said. Speaking at a forum that brought 47 innovative women from all the 47 counties in Nairobi, Lichuma said apart from their numerical strength in terms of population, they also possess untapped innovation skills which if exploited would contribute to the reduction of poverty, elimination of hunger and improvement of good health and well-being.
The forum themed as “celebrating innovativeness in the counties by women and their role in the domestication of the sustainable development goals” showcased a raft of unique projects run by dedicated women from the counties. Some of the projects on display included beadwork, weaving and basketry, textile design, social work among others.
According to the Director General Vision 2030 secretariat Wainaina Gituro, the realization of the sustainable development goals will complement the achievement of the ambitious socio economic blueprint which coincidentally matures at the same time with the SDGs in 2030.
“Quite often, you find counties such as Meru producing food in surplus yet residents in Turkana County are starving. Through the county government, we should be able to provide a mechanism that allows farmers in Meru to transport and sell their food in Turkana County without impediments and thus guarantee food security” said Lichuma. She urged the women to network and maintain open lines of communication inorder to learn and share knowledge.
Principal Secretary in the State Department of Gender Zeinab Hussein said the government would continue to provide access and opportunities to women and other vulnerable groups in order to empower them.
During the launch the 47 women innovators received a certificate of recognition each and an information kit. At the same time Lichuma revisited the issue of the two thirds gender principle warning that the next parliament risked being declared unconstitutional it fails to provide a framework to realize the principle in the National Assembly and Senate.