Sport In Action Statement On International Women’s Day 2023.
Sport In Action (SIA) joins the rest of the world in celebrating the 2023 International Women’s Day under the theme “DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality.
This year’s theme is timely as it comes at a time when the world is currently undergoing numerous changes in the way operations are conducted due to the COVID-19 that has promoted the use of technology and innovation like never before.
As a sport-for-development organisation and with a working partnership with Volunteer Zambia Project, SIA has distributed over 40 laptops and 40 iPhones that were a donation from St. Andrews University in Scotland to staff and volunteers aimed at communicating and effectively conducting and promoting the use of virtual works.
SIA Executive Director Frankson Mushindu said while promoting the use of digital spaces across the country, there was an urgent need to ensure that everyone played a role in creating safer spaces for the girls and young women to have better lives.
“As SIA, we have engaged girls and young women in various ways of participation. Our organisation is currently in partnership with likeminded organisations like World Vision, Norwegian Olympic Committee and Volunteer Zambia from the UK to create a better environment for the girl child,” Mushindu said.
He added. “We are running the Sexual Gender-Based Violence Prevent Project which is also called Natwampane in the northern region where we are targeting six districts. The rural population is usually left out in such programmes but we are happy that with funding from the EU, we are managing to engage key stakeholders who are gatekeepers in creating a better environment for women.”
Mushindu said the organisation was happy that traditional leaders have come on board to speak and act against all forms of violence which has been boosted by the government’s active role in strengthening systems and structures at community level in order to have a better environment for the girl child and young women.
He added that in order to leave no one behind, the organisation had integrated messages of combating violence in sport and created manuals targeting the boys and older males so that they are able to have knowledge and skills around issues of such GBV.
“There is a need for us to continue engaging males and as an organisation, we have engaged thousands of young people through the power of sport because we believe that sport can mobilise, educate and empower communities,” Mushindu said.
“On this International Women’s Day, we are calling on the private sector to come on board and support programmes that will make the digital world safer and more inclusive. Therefore, we have to fight all forms of violence by involving the male folks to effectively fight all forms of GBV,” Mushindu concluded.