At Secret Sisterhood, our goal is to make the world a better place for all women and empower women in countries who need it the most. This is why we support many international charities and causes that tackle gender inequality in different areas of life including cultural, educational and economical.
Achieving gender equality in a country does not only benefit the livelihoods of women, it greatly improves the overall economic, medical, educational and social progress of a nation. However to improve these areas of life, women need to be given access, the freedom to make their own decisions and equal rights.
In order to achieve gender equality in a nation, women must be given access to economic resources such as land, property, information, income, and financial services. In the Asia Pacific region, women’s access to employment remains much less than men’s. In the non- agricultural sector, women hold only 18% of paying jobs in South Asia, and between 20 and 40% in other parts of the region. Women also need access to education and healthcare. Two-thirds of the 800 million people in the world who lack basic literacy skills are female and half a million women each year die from complications during pregnancy. Investments in giving women access to economic resources, education, and healthcare can greatly reduce rates of maternal mortality, allow for better educated and healthier children and generate higher household incomes.
For women to be allowed to actively participate in decision- making, gender relations must change in the household, community and in social, economical and political institutions at local and national levels. Women living in Pacific Island Countries hold an average of 3% of seats in national parliaments and an average of 18% of seats in East Asia. Not having equal female representation in politics, reduces the opportunity for nations to have less corruption and less correlation between better governance. To allow females to be decision makers, there also needs to be change in the attitudes and behaviours of men towards women which means investment in education is essential.
Discrimination against women must be eliminated where it is written in customary law, formal legislation and in social, economic and political institutions. This will enable women to realise their rights, access resources, make decisions and live without fear of violence. Globally one-third of women, experience physical and sexual violence, and up to 900 000 people are trafficked across international borders each year, the majority of whom are women and young girls. As global citizens, it is important for us to work hard at promoting the awareness of basic human rights of all people as without these efforts, change in countries cannot be made.
Providing women with access to educational, economical and medical resources, allowing them to actively participate in decision making and giving women equal rights that are written in law are all important in not only achieving gender equality, but improving the overall progress of a nation. With more countries being open to progress and gender equal societies around the world, we can better work collectively as global citizens to ensure that we keep evolving and changing the way we treat women around the world.
At Secret Sisterhood we actively support causes that focus on the importance of access, decision- making and human rights, in achieving gender equality. Some of these include providing microfinance loans to women in need in over 100 countries, providing birthing kits to women in Africa, providing menstrual cups to women in Uganda, supporting anti-trafficking programs in India and providing girls with education in Africa. You can read more about the organisations and charities that we support on our ‘Mission’ page at Secret Mission | Secret Sisterhood