Today we celebrate the International Day of Rural Women, and recognise the amazing impact and contribution women in rural areas and Indigenous communities make.
This celebration, organised by the United Nations aims to eradicate the common poverty faced by women and girls in regional communities, and recognise the large contribution they make in feeding, supporting and nurturing these communities. It is also a day to celebrate the amazing impact these women have on the lives of children, elders, and other community members.
"The crucial role that women and girls play in ensuring the sustainability of rural households and communities, improving rural livelihoods and overall wellbeing, has been increasingly recognized. Women account for a substantial proportion of the agricultural labour force, including informal work, and perform the bulk of unpaid care and domestic work within families and households in rural areas. They make significant contributions to agricultural production, food security and nutrition, land and natural resource management, and building climate resilience.”
- United Nations, https://www.un.org/en/events/ruralwomenday/
International Day of Rural Women 2019
This year the theme of International Day of Rural Women is “Rural Women and Girls Building Climate Resilience”, which falls in line with the recent UN Climate Action Summit held last month.
Rural communities naturally use more sustainable and eco-friendly techniques, and rely largely on the natural resources around them. This is why the UN has linked climate change to rural communities to raise awareness of its wider impacts.
The women within these communities are usually responsible for household tasks, and are highly involved in gathering and cooking food for their family and community. This international day is an important reminder to appreciate the amazing contribution made to society by women and girls, especially in rural settings.
Above: A Watarrka community member creating Indigenous art at the 2019 Sports & Storytelling Festival
The Women of Watarrka
At the Watarrka Foundation, we fully support gender equality and appreciate the large contributions made by women within our organisation and in the wider Watarrka community. From Foundation Directors, to Watarrka school teachers, women within the community and girls who attend the Watarrka Primary School, each individual has a vital contribution to improving the quality of life amongst the Indigenous community within Watarrka.
Indigenous women in the Watarrka community play a big role in raising children, sourcing food and cooking for their families. Many of the elders in the community are women, and have a large influence on the community by passing down Aboriginal traditions in the form of stories, customs, art and songs.
Projects initiated by the Watarrka Foundation have been gratefully adopted by women within the community, such as the fresh foods project. Produce from the veggie patch and fruit orchard at the Watarrka Primary School are harvested by the children and shared around with the community, which provides Watarrka women with another source of food when cooking for their families.
To learn more about International Day of Rural Women, head to https://www.un.org/en/events/ruralwomenday/
To support the Foundation and our future projects, make a donation at www.givenow.com.au/watarrkafoundation