Spending 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for 5 weeks with one person can have one of two results. You either begin to morph into one being, or you both end up dead. Thankfully, Johanna and I seem to be leaning towards the former, which explains this week’s posts. As our time in Douala comes to an end, we decided to present a brief, yet comprehensive view of what we’ve been up to and what UCOMAS is all about. In two parts, our posts excerpt the documentary we produced while working with the union.
Johanna’s blog entitled “Assessment Phase: Understanding Women Traders’ Needs” profiles the women of the Sandaga Market, the problems they encounter and their need for more representation. In the face of “intimidation, manipulation, blackmail, and scams, [and] verbal, physical and sexual harassment,” as an opening sentence from the documentary explains, “they (women traders) must fight to secure the functioning of their commercial activities in order to improve of the conditions of their lives and those of their families.”
In the video below, I present a short introduction to the story of UCOMAS and its future. Vital Voices Global Partnership, a DC based NGO, partnered with Mme Kah Walla to launch the AMA Women Project whose goals were to empower the women traders and bolster their efforts at improving market conditions. After participating in the AMA Project’s leadership and advocacy trainings, the women decided to come together and “speak with one voice” to make change. Thus, you have: UCOMAS
We have also set up a Google site for the organization. Please check it out and give us feedback!
Posted By Helah Robinson
Posted Jul 8th, 2009