Tag a Life International (TaLI) with the support of Econet Zimbabwe and that of Elevate this past Saturday the 28th of October launched its first ever Girls and Young Women's Annual Conference which is set to empower girls from across the country with exposure opportunities, knowledge of their rights, to share their experiences, learn from their peers as well as successful women and men who are role models. In line with the International Day of the Girl Child which is every 11th of October, TaLI holds the month of October sacred and has decided to launch the Annual Conference in this month.
More than 85 girls came from the Midlands Province to attend the conference which was packed with activities that sought to explore the challenges that the young women face in their day to day lives. Key issues that were significant included issues of child marriages, with one 19 year old young mom who brought her child and shared about her own challenges that she's experienced since she left school in form 3 to briefly get married.
The conference had high representation from various relevant government ministries such as the Ministry of Women Affairs Gender and Community Development, Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, the Provincial Administrator and the Ministry of Youth among other stakeholders. Information Communication Technology and digital environment took centre stage during the conference with Econet Wireless Regional Manager Midlands Mr Brian Raradza highlighting to girls some of the opportunities that exist in this field where he explored some of the jobs that exist in their organisation including Engineers sighting a case in point of a lady engineer named Hazel in their office who is preferred to attend to technical issues by their team.
The Executive Director and Founder of Tag a Life (TaLI) Ms Nyaradzo Mashayamombe encouraged girls to utilise digital media and ICTs positively sighting some of the networking opportunities that social media offers, and also educating the girls of the negative side with activities such as revenge ponography that often robe girls of opportunities in the future and cause them untold emotional suffering.
Platforms such as the Girls Annual Conference that TaLI launched are essential for girls and young women to advance their lives learning about issues such as Economic Empowerment, Leadership and Participation, Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR), Gender Based Violence (GBV), Psycho Social Support (PSS), Information Communication Technology (ICTs), Environment and Climate as well as Advocacy. The knowledge of these issues provide girls with a Voice, Agency and Life Skills to be able to transform their own lives and contribute to the wealth of their families, development of their communities and ultimately participate equally in the global development. We look forward to next year's conference!