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Letter from MIWODIF on the Treatment of Women in Uganda

Posted: Wed, February 01, 2017 | By: Women’s Empowerment



by Biira Cathy

Today we moved to the community with some of our MIWODIF Staff doing field work, we had the best field experience while educating the women and men on the human rights and humanism.

The first home we met only the woman called Amutuhaire Resty 32 years and her 4 children, 1 boy and 3 girls. Her husband Tatutreka Moses 38 years was not at home at the time of visit. She said she was married at the age of 17 years when she dropped out of school after became pregnant and later the child died. after she got married to Moses.

One of the thing we discussed with her was how does your husband treat you at home? we discussed many things about her treatment at home by the husband. However, among many things she told us that most of the sex she always have with her husband is always forced sex because the husband do come home late while drunk and for her she does not drink, and that earliest time for her husband to come home is always at 1:00 am to 3:00 pm. She said that if she tries to refuse not giving him sex at the time he wants, the man can beat her seriously.

She again said that at times when he comes, he makes sure that every child wakes up and makes the children dance for him.

When we shared with her about humanism, she told us that she had heard about it from their VSLA group when her chairperson was discussing with them about it on Sunday 29th/02/2017. When we tried to ask her what she liked about what their chairperson said, she said everything but when we asked her to tell us what she can remember she could not tell us any. However, we tried remind her about humanism.

She appreciated what MIWODIF is doing in the community by training women in village savings and loans Association, supporting orphans. adolescents young girls and women.

However, she requested us to go back another day and meet both of them with her husband.

We also visited the family of Mr. Barrigye 45 years with her wife Josephine 33 years and they have 6 children 2 girls and 4 boys. the good thing with this family was that the woman had attended the conference of 28th/02/2017. She was very happy by seeing us. We also had a good discussion. In this home we begin on discussing about humanism and qualities of good humanist. After sharing with both of them about humanism, Mr. Barrigye said they’re the humanists to go heaven.

However, when we discussed about human rights,( equal treatment, giving the women freedom of speech, domestic violence, rights of both boys and girls. Mr. Barrigye said too much freedom given to the woman will make her to overlook you the husband. however, we tried to share with him, he was as if he has understood the importance of giving the woman her rights.

In our conclusion we promised to be coming back and share with us the new developments after our visit.

As we were having lunch in one of the trading centres, we brought in stories about President of Uganda, how he as appointed ambassadress and also talked about his strengths and weakness. As we were discussing we brought in the issue of religions, as we were discussing about religions, one man told us that there is new religion called humanism, where by they want all women in the VSLA group to join. we started asking them about that religion, what it does, who are the founders and who told him about that religion. The man told us that she was the wife and that there are ‘‘Bazungu’‘ meaning whites and that they will give them school fees for their children if they become members. So then one of us asked them whether it’s bad, others said that is what we want. However, we had to discuss about humanism and the discussion looked good to them.

(NOTE: Brighter Brains Institute does not bribe parents with the promise of tuition fees if their kids join the school. What we do, on occasion, is offer tuition fees to orphans who are already attending the school - if we can find a donor willing to sponsor the orphan. This exaggeration—that we give people money to enroll their kids—is quite typical of the rumors spread about BBI)

What was the lesson about our field visit.

We didn’t have any resistance about humanism, its about the approach one uses.

We need to use the community members that we support and we may not need going to churches. Because MIWODIF is given flat form in the community because of it’s HIV/AIDS, women economic empowerment, supporting orphans and other Vulnerable children with scholastic materials, adolescent girls on vocational skills projects. This is helping MIWODIF to have more women on aboard as humanists and human rights defenders.

We also need to be exemplary, you who is talking about humanism are you humanists your self, do you support human rights, do your children at home have their child rights, can people around see that in you.

As long as you have a sustainable project you’re doing in that community people will have to give you time and will listen to your discussion.

It may not need a lot of money as i had thought but one can do it as he/she is implementing any project much as it is not sponsored by BBI or humanists donors, because we had community education on humanism and human rights today as we were conducting our community field visit on HIV/AIDS prevention and control funded by american embassy.

We need recorders and video cameras such that whatever we are discussing can be kept on record and can act as justification to support ones report.

Cathy



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