SVG to host first ever National Women’s Congress next month
February 10, 2012
SVG to host first ever National Women’s Congress next month

The views and concerns of Vincentian women are expected to be highlighted when the first ever National Women’s Congress convenes here next month.{{more}}

At a media briefing on Tuesday, February 7, President of the National Council of Women Nelcia Robinson- Hazell said that the congress, slated for March 21-22, hopes to influence and translate these concerns into better socio-economic conditions for women in the areas where they are most affected.

At the briefing, which took place at the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, Robinson-Hazell said that it is hoped that the congress would create a platform for women to build national solidarity and maintain a voice in the process of national development.

Robinson-Hazell, who is also the chairperson of the organizing committee, outlined the three main aims of the Congress:

“The principal objectives of the congress are to create an understanding in women on their role in national development…. To provide a forum for the voices and concerns of women in all sectors to be heard; including rural women, people with disabilities, youth, indigenous and Rastafari women, and to build a national solidarity among women, and women in groups.”

“Participants will consider and prepare proposals on a broad range of subjects, including economic development, trade and finance, peace and security, education, health, leadership and political participation.

The Congress is being coordinated by the NCW, the Organization of American States, as well as the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, and the Gender Affairs Department of the Government of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

Venezuelan Ambassador Yoel Perez Marcano, a member of the organizing committee, congratulated the NCW and reaffirmed his country’s support for the event.

“The women of St. Vincent and the Grenadines have the possibility to get together and discuss not only problems of Vincentian women, but also the problems of women of the world.”

“It is important that the women have answers to these problems and could find intelligent solutions that would permit the protection of their rights to improve their lives.”

Also expressing pleasure of being a part of the historic event is OAS representative Melene Glynn, who said that her organization was delighted to be able to collaborate with the other entities for the event.

Glynn pointed out that a forum for young women will be held prior to the congress, which is to be used as a buildup to the main event.

“With funding from the Australian government, the NCW and the other stakeholders will be coming together to hold a conference for young women on the 18th February, which is also the day of the women of the Americas; a day celebrated by the OAS to recognize and promote the Inter American Commission of Women, which works to highlight women’s issues throughout the hemisphere.”

At the actual congress, Glynn noted that the organizers hoped to consider the issues and the obstacles to more women taking up more responsibilities at the political leadership level.

The Congress is expected to conclude with a march and rally in Kingstown.(JJ)