INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY: Inspire inclusion: Count Her In

Source: INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY: Inspire inclusion: Count Her In


#Inspire inclusion: Count Her In: Accelerating Gender Equality Through Economic Empowerment.

When we inspire others to understand and value women’s inclusion we forge a better world. And when women themselves are inspired to be included there is a sense of belonging, relevance and empowerment.


The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day 2024 inspires the inclusion of women in the economy.  It is a call to purposefully forge a more inclusive world for women because various systemic obstacles impede women from participating fully and equally in the economy. Gender equality can only be achieved through economic empowerment because without economic power, equality of the sexes is impossible. Women need to be in meaningful economic activities where their contributions are fairly valued and rewarded.  Excluding women from participating fully in the economy deprives the economy of half its potential because women are half of the economic equation.

Inclusion is about embracing and celebrating the diversity of women because wealth is bestowed in different abilities and qualities. No two women are alike even though women have shared experiences and similarities. Inclusion means appreciating women’s differences in race, age, ability, body image, individual differences etc. This women’s day the world is called upon to include all women in all areas of human endeavour like sport, education, career development, arts, science, technology, boardrooms, the military, politics in everything and everywhere. Including women in the economy is done through positive actions like

  • Recruiting, retaining and developing female talent
  • Supporting women and girls into leadership, decision making, business and science and technology (STEM)
  • Designing and building infrastructure that meets the needs of women and girls
  • Helping women and girls make informed decisions about their health
  • Involving women and girls in sustainable agriculture and food security
  • Providing women and girls with access to quality education and training
  • Promoting sporting, creative, artistic talent and women and girls etc

Zimbabwean women are very active economically despite the various hurdles they face in participating fully and equally. 70% of the world’s poor people are women so inevitably the majority of Zimbabwean women are poor and economically disadvantaged. Some of the barriers they face include restricted land rights, lack of access to financial resources and limited access to political and economic decision-making platforms. Where resources are limited families still prioritise the education of boys over girls the result being early marriages for girls and perpetuation of the poverty cycle for women.

Zimbabwe has made some positive economically inclusive strides for  women although they still fall short of the required minimum. Examples include the establishment of the Zimbabwe Women’s Microfinance Bank in 2018. It was established to cater for the needs of women in business who require access to capital because the majority of them have no collateral security. Failure to access business loans and capital bars women from participating in profitable economic activities. The Women’s Bank has funding models that are attainable to women on the periphery of the economy who wish to be included.

Other positive inclusive actions are the establishment of the Women’s University in Africa and various empowerment associations in key economic areas like Business, Mining, Farming and Construction. These associations help to lift women up economically but the downside of is they usually benefit the same few privileged connected women from urban areas to the exclusion of women who live in rural areas.

The majority of rural women are economically active but usually live in conditions of poverty. Up to 67.7% of Zimbabwe’s population lives in rural areas with more than half being women and girls. Rural women play a significant role in food security economic activities. They are intimately engaged in land and natural resources management as subsistence and small to medium scale farmers, Despite the important economic roles they play they are largely excluded from profiting economically from those activities.  Rural women and girls have higher rates of child marriages, unreported domestic violence, limited healthcare and education facilities etc. Purposeful policies and actions are needed to include rural women in the economy if the upliftment of all women is sincere.


International Women’s Day is a day for collective global activism for those committed to women’s equality and advocating a better world for women. Veritas aligns itself with this cause and congratulates the women of the world for their contributions to global human development. Veritas particularly encourages all women of Zimbabwe to never stop aspiring for more and for better economic outcomes for themselves.

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