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RWA South Africa: Empowering Rural Women: Advocacy for Peasant Rights and UNDROP Implementation

By Asanda Magadla

The Rural Women’s Assembly has integrated the Universal Declaration on the Rights of Peasants and Other People Working in Rural Areas (UNDROP) into its educational initiatives aimed at empowering women. Recognizing the fundamental right to food, particularly healthy food, underpins their advocacy efforts. Women are equipped with agroecological methods for sustainable crop cultivation and livestock management as part of this endeavor. With a proactive role in community outreach, the Rural Women’s Assembly endeavors to educate and mobilize women, many of whom shoulder the primary responsibility for their families’ well-being. Through localized study sessions, women gain a deeper understanding of their rights as peasants, fostering a collective voice in advocating for their rights.

On the 30th of April 2024 Rural Women’s Assembly South Africa joined other country regions in celebration of Peasant Day. This day is to remember all people who start small garden at their back yards in order to survive and sustain their livihoods. Peasant Day is also recognised internationally and Rural Women’s Assembly is one of the organisation that takes part in remember this day. It was a woman who took an initiative to make sure that the family has food security that will last them for a long time. During World War when men went to war, women were the ones providing by putting food on the table for their children. We can not seat and not remember this important day as Rural Women’s Assembly because today women did follow up on those women’s footsteps. Rural Women’s I sisters go from one community to the other empowering other women about guerrilla garden as the economy of the country is getting tense. Women can no longer afford what they used to buy anymore due to austerity budget cuts. Now people are living below poverty line and having a backyard garden is the only solution.

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