Posts Tagged ‘gender gap’

Nosiko Mundia – documenting to share knowledge

2019/04/15

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Nosiko is a young woman born and raised in Sinazongwe Zambia. I am interested to hear her story how she got to join the community radio Zongwe FM. Nosiko has completed secondary school and had open ears for a different pass-time. She listened to the local radio in her homestead thinking ‘i can do just as well’. When ZongweFM team was looking for a secretary, she joined. Nosiko tells us that she long since had a dream of becoming a journalist; but now, checking on reality, she’ll soon start training as a nurse. In the Zongwe team, Nosiko also breaks into a rather male-dominated field: football commentary. She describes for us the process, how it’s done at Zongwe FM; even gives us a sound bite.

We recorded the interview in the IT class room next to the Zongwe FM studio after one of my first training sessions with Zongwe team in June 2018. The radio transmitter is housed in this room; that’s the white noise in the background.

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can you manage behind the mic…? Yes I can!”

Nosiko was one of only very few young women who came to join our Zongwe training and broadcasts; and she was the only one to stay long enough for us to achieve some work together; such as the “Basimbi Radio” workshops and broadcasts with school girls; and an exchange visit to Zubo Trust in Binga across Kariba Lake which Nosiko got to join and document.

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come to Zongwe FM, join me as your sister!” (birth of “basimbi radio”)

Others came once or twice and vanished. It needed a lot of time, patience and flexibility to find the young ladies and collect them from wherever they were if need be. Reasons for the difficulty are varied, but I could convince myself that it all boils down to women’s endless duties at home and in their families. I found myself negotiating free time for the girls from mothers and fathers…  Memory and feeling told me that my experiences in neighboring Zimbabwe have been better by degrees. I went to and through various statistical records; numbers seem to confirm my impressions. See for example: WEF gender-gap index 2015 (the last year that Zambia is listed) or UNwomen sdg-report

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The second interview with Nosiko Mundia was recorded shortly after her return from Binga where she accompanied Maria Ntandiyana and Cleopatra Nchite, two representatives of Sinazongwe women clubs on a visit to the women’s organisation Zubo Trust. Nosiko is still excited. As for the other two women, it was her very first international journey into unknown territory. She tells us about the different kinds of economic empowerment projects which they got to know among Zubo women, the kapenta fishing, the craft weavers, the soap production from Jatropha.

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my role was to record…”

Nosiko reflects on her role as the record-keeper, the one who documents the event in service for the others to assist memory and for those back home so even they may learn by listening to the recordings. We ask her about any differences in the lives of women she may have noticed:

“women in Sinazongwe don’t cooperate… and they don’t sell what they produce…”

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Based on Nosiko’s audio documentation, we made a number of broadcasts for the community where she, and also Maria and Cleopatra reported what they had witnessed and learned. Clips from the broadcasts are already archived.

Sinazongwe Community Radio Women's Exchange Visit

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Mrs Chilowana Senior Teacher – it is not so easy for the girls…

2019/04/05

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Sinazongwe Primary School was established in 1958 – i.e. at the time of the forced resettlement of the Tonga people. Over the 50 years since it was established, the school didn’t have one female head teacher… as Mrs Chilowana tells us.

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Mrs Chilowana has been in the teaching services for 25 year; the past 10 years as a Senior Teacher at Sinazongwe Primary/ Secondary School. In the interview, we ask Mrs Chilowana to give us a little insight in to the life of a woman in employment and public service in the rural areas of Sinazongwe district. In the first track, Mrs Chilowana tells a bit of her own story…

It’s not so easy…”

In the main part of the interview, we ask Mrs Chilowana to describe for us the social expectations on girl children in the community and how these community customs translate in to challenges in young women’s lives and education…

Girls are expected to do much of the home chose…”

There are various programmes in place to sensitize the community, lighten the plight of the girls and take steps of changing community habits. In the last part of the interview, Mrs Chilowana describes some of the “moderate changes” and tells us i.a. about the activities of the Guidance Office, a re-entry policy to school for young mothers and the involvement of the various stakeholders in the area.

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One of our responses to the situation Mrs Chilowana describes in her interview was “Basimbi Radio” – radio with and for girls, a special venture throughout the school holidays in August with weekly workshops and live shows. Music: DJ Kwe

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The Radio-Bridge Compilation has some powerful tracks, tools for us, that we often played in our Basimbi Radio shows like this remix by Feralmind (London woman DJ) based on a recording by Zubo Trust’s Margaret Munkuli of Labecca singing a warning song for girls…

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Chiefteness Mwenda – as women in Africa we carry a huge responsibility

2019/03/31

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Normally in Tonga culture, they don’t give the position to women…

Trained as a nurse, and a leprosy controller in her district, Mrs Kalichi didn’t have plans leaving her job and ordinary family life. The male folk among the royal family refused to take up the vacant position of the chief – why should they leave their job in town for some “backward stuff” in the remote rural areas of Chikankata Zambia…?!

It’s not interesting, my sister…

Eli Mwiinga Namazuminana Kalichi became Chiefteness Mwenda of Chikankata in 2006. In this interview, she unravels for us why she took the step that her brothers refused, and what it meant for her life to take up the traditional leadership position as a woman, and become the first ever Chiefteness in Southern Province… Today, Chiefteness Mwenda is Deputy Chair of the house of Chiefs; and with my questions, I encouraged her to tell us a little more about the House and its 10% female members.

 

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As women, we have huge responsibility towards all community…

Chiefteness Mwenda feels deep empathy for the women and girls in her district and sees her responsibility as a female leader in taking steps to change the plight of women’s lives for the better.

 

Belonging comes natural with the sound of the drums from the Valley…

Chiefteness Mwenda was a baby girl of three at the time of the forced removal; but her father came from the valley, and the memory of the forced removal and resettlement of the Tonga people and, of the Tonga culture and tradition was very much present in the family when Eli Mwiinga was growing up.

 

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Twalumba loko; special thanks to Sharon Monga for brokering the opportunity to record this interview with Chiefteness Mwenda and for accompanying me on the journey to her native Chikankata.

 

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