Closing Workshop on Women and Water; Strengthening Women for Justice and Sustainability

Women have a central role in life, not only in the family, women even play a great role in a broader context. Unfortunately, in a patriarchal culture of society, the roles of women seem to be in a domestic area. The awareness of the important roles of women is slowly starting to move. The inclusion of gender equality in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is a significant encouragement to increase the awareness of the important roles of women.

“In the world development, we refer to SDGs. There are 17 goals, including gender equality in goal 5 and Access to Clean Water and Sanitation in goal 6. The development in Indonesia refers to this as well, so as the Paris Agreement regarding Climate Change, “said Director of Gemawan, Laili Khairnur, at the opening of the Closing Workshop on Women and Water  attended by representatives of women’s groups from twelve villages in Sambas Regency.

Geographical conditions that are surrounded by the river, causing Sambas community to immensely rely on the river for their livelihoods. “Sejangkung, for example, is surrounded by rivers, and rivers are used as a source of life and a source of income. In reality, the quality of our river is not as good as expected,” she said in the activity which was conducted for three days since Friday (18/9). “There must be people who care, and I believe they are all mothers. In reality, it is the mothers who play a role in the village,” she added.

According to Laili, this activity aimed to strengthen women’s groups, especially in regard with the aspects of legality and management of women’s organizations. “It is important for mothers to get information and access to programs in the village or regency,” she explained.

A number of activities have been carried out with various groups from several villages in Sambas starting from the steps of forming groups, monitoring water quality, routine group meetings, waste management, providing composter bins, to various trainings such as making organic fertilizers, training on the use of disposable diapers, etc.

Representatives of women’s groups who attended this activity came from various backgrounds of livelihood. Those varieties are the wealth to be proud of. “We have to introduce women’s work and the natural beauty of Sambas to the world,” said Laili, motivating the participants.

The energy of various parties is needed so that there is an acceleration in environmental improvement and sustainability. “It requires synergy from various parties to protect the environment and maintain the sustainability of the future,” said Laili in this activity which was supported by Elsam, Ecoton, and BothEnds. Hence, the workshop entitled Women and Water: The Strengthening of Water Resource Protection and Sustainability of Life presented speakers from various related stakeholders, such as OPD of Sambas Regency Government, Village Government, universities, and civil society. In particular, the activity conducted until Sunday (20/9) was expected to be able to integrate program activities into policy strategies of the regency to encourage and prepare group development at the village level.

Considering the ongoing pandemic conditions, The activity was carried out online and offline. The guest speakers from other cities attended video conference facilities, combined with offline presentations by the guest speakers from the city. “We must remain cautious, since Covid-19 is invisible. It is compulsory to always wear a mask and keep your distance, “she advised.

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