Monthly Archives: June 2014
Senator Ifill: Disabled women are neglected
Senator Kerryann Ifill is describing a newly-launched Breakfast Club for girls and women with disabilities as an initiative that would lay a strong foundation for females throughout the country.
The club, which was presented yesterday on the occasion of International Women’s Day, would operate a three-month training programme focusing on empowering females with disabilities to become advocates for similarly affected people.
“Many of our young women with disabilities are neglected, ignored, set aside, not included in the important activities of life,” said Ifill, president of the Barbados Council for the Disabled.
Adding that these women are mostly untrained, she said, “Some of us do not receive the necessary information that we need to make wise decisions…The Breakfast Club which was put together by the Barbados Council for the Disabled in collaboration with the Business and Professional Women’s Club of Barbados is designed to fortify you for the days ahead.”
The programme comprises a series of workshops, run by trainers who will educate participants on aspects of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
“At the end of these three months you will leave here strengthened, renewed, and invigorated for all that life is going to throw your way,” Ifill told the participants gathered at Harambee House, head office of the Council.
The concept for the club was introduced by Barbados Council for the Disabled Administrative Project Officer, Rose-Ann Foster-Vaughn, and is a partnership with the Business and Professional Women’s Club of Barbados.
Foster-Vaughn said the idea came from a training programme for women with disabilities she attended in the US.
“Being a participant in this programme has created a burning passion within me to develop a similar programme for women with disabilities here in Barbados, which encourages them to stand up and speak out – strong, loud and passionately,” she said.
Foster-Vaughn explained, “Six skilled facilitators will base their presentations around areas which will address topics reflecting a woman’s personal image, capacity building and leadership skills”.
The participants will be taught empowerment, self-advocacy, the importance of imagery, etiquette and the usefulness of physical activity.”
BPW Barbados is proud to have partnered with the Barbados Disability Council to host the “Breakfast Club”, an empowerment programme for women with disabilities. Overseen by Vice President of BPW Barbados Nicole Alleyne, BPW Barbados was honoured to support training and education in sexual and reproductive health, human rights, aspects of gender-based violence, finance, personal development and more. BPW Barbados looks forward to future partnerships with the Barbados Disability Council.
Women with disabilities complete training
by George Alleyne
The office of UN Women will soon be working with an organisation of women with disabilities in Barbados to further female leadership in communities.
Representative for UN Women in Barbados, Christine Arab, this morning announced the collaboration during her address at the ‘Culmination of the Breakfast Club’, a graduation ceremony for 12 women with disabilities, who were trained over 10 weeks on issues relating to empowerment.
“My agency deals with gender, quality and women’s improvement. . .We’re trying to do much more at the community level to have discussions with young people, larger discussions about the dynamics that results in violence,” Arab explained at the NUPW, Horatio Cooke Auditorium.
She added, “It is part of our objectives and one of the reasons why I came today. We would like to work with women from the disabled community to be part of that conversation, to bring a particular perspective to the conversation and to be leaders in the conversation at a community level…we’re talking parish levels”.
Co-sponsored by the Barbados Council for the Disabled and the Business and Professional Women’s Club of Barbados, the Breakfast Club was launched on International Women’s Day, 2014.
The participants went through training on ‘being a self-advocate’; ‘importance of personal imagery/etiquette’; and ‘getting pumped’ through physical activity routines.
Additionally, they participated in an awareness course on women’s rights, and another on sexual reproduction health.
“In the Caribbean whenever we talk about women being disadvantaged, there will always be someone who immediately says, ‘what about men?’,” Arab said, but contended, “This is not about putting women ahead of men. This is the simple statistical fact that in your country girls outperform boys in school, but they underperform boys in economic earning, labour activity. They are more likely to be poor, they are more likely to head large households that are poor”.
“And women with disabilities have two times likelihood of unemployment than men with disabilities. So even when people are facing disabilities, women with disabilities often face two-fold.”
“And we would like to do much more with women who are facing challenges, if [it is] because they are disabled, and want to know what those particular challenges are,” the UN official said further.