VP Taylor, former Pres. Sirleaf urge women to set achievable vision
In an effort to increase women’s political participation and leadership, NAYMOTE in partnership with UN Women-Liberia has launched a one-year Young Women Political Empowerment and Leadership Mentoring program for 75 young women across Liberia’s 15 counties. The exercise aims at grooming young women for national leadership in the next 3-15 years.
The program, which has already exhausted two regional workshops targeting 50 young emerging female leaders, brought together two exemplary women leaders as motivational speakers.
The first training, which was held in Gbarnga, Bong County was facilitated by Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor, who named fear, lack of support and limited access to education, as some of the barriers affecting women’s participation.
VP Taylor then motivated the young women to build partnerships and networks to strike a balance with their male counterparts for national leadership stating that “only people with passion do what they want to do, and can continue despite the odds.”
Former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, who spoke at the 2nd regional training in Tubmanburg, Bomi County, shared her challenges and success on how she made it through her political journey. Her comment inspired many of the participants, who applauded her.
Madam Sirleaf underscored the need for women to set clear goals, vision; be determined and consistent for what they want to be in life.
On the participants’ questions, she described dishonesty, laziness and poor education system as some challenges during her 12 years of leadership, and encouraged women interested in politics to be honest, hardworking, educated, knowledgeable of issues, and to be prepared to stand for what they really believe in.
UN Women Deputy Country Representative, Madam Sangeeta Thapa, also highlighted the need for full participation of women in leadership, and decision-making if the country’s development drive must be achieved as the number of women participation in national government is very low. She described this as “a national emergency that must be treated with urgency.”
Both Vice President Taylor and former President Sirleaf applauded UN Women for supporting NAYMOTE to implement such a program. They pledged their individual commitment to support the project, which they believe will enhance women’s participation and representation.
NAYMOTE believes in developing the skills and knowledge of the young progressive women will help to overcome barriers and enhance effective participation, representation and leadership for a better Liberia.
The 10 participating counties include, Lofa, Bong, Montserrado, Bassa, Margibi, Nimba, Bomi, Grand Cape Mount, River Cess and Gbarpolu, respectively.