Written by Suzan Joy
We are all victims of various forms of injustices like domestic violence, police brutality, hunger, income inequality, sexual harassment, land conflict, death, betrayal, homelessness etc. Through these shared experiences and stories we find ourselves connected to one another. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we all come from a place of deep compassion and become part of a solution that restores hope and healing
A solution that empowers those at the margins of society to step forward and become drivers of change. Where their voices are heard and amplified. This is exactly why the WEAll East African hub exists! To support grassroots movements across East Africa to be key drivers for the global movement for a wellbeing economy.
Part of my journey in creating this hub is connecting local grassroots organisations and building a tight support network amongst them so they are able to create more impact in the communities they serve. And by connecting these organizations to all other key actors/sectors at all levels, we expect to be able to help support Alliances make more impact and influence working policies. In the end use the bottom up approach to address complexities that emerge
Building a Wellbeing Economy means creating spaces that breeds collaborations, social innovations and strategically placing grassroots movements at the forefront of systems change. Grassroots movements are the engine that drives societal and policy change as people who work and reside in communities are best positioned to identify what needs to change in their communities.
This week I had the privilege of interacting with Molly, a woman who dedicates her time, energy and resources to support her neighbors. She works closely with her community members to promote the welfare needs of the most vulnerable people such as women, children, youth, disabled, elderly and HIV/AIDS infected and affected persons in her community.
Listen to our interview below
Witnessing her work was a good reminder of what it means to build a Wellbeing Economy. It means actively taking care of the needs of the people and the planet.
Molly realized that the rate of teenage pregnancies in her community is increasing daily due to schools being closed down as an effect of COVID-19. So together with her community they established support groups for teenage mothers. In these groups the mothers go through therapy or counseling sessions. And are taught various entrepreneurial skills as well. This way they can be economically independent and mentally healthy to raise their children
Molly also realized that women were being deprived of their land rights because in most cultures here, they aren’t supposed to inherit land. But through Fountain of Life, a community based organization that she founded and directs, she organizes training sessions with these women and educates them about their land rights. Fountain of Life also facilitates reconciliation dialogues between the victims of land grabbing and the land grabbers. Mary, one of the victims, was able to get back 800 acres of land. Now uses her journey and story to build confidence and encourages other women in her community to fight for their land rights. Mary has now established a team of women and together they settle cases of land disputes in villages within Otuke district.
This is just one example of the many initiatives that exist to address local issues via local, grassroot solutions. We hope you continue to follow the journey of the East Africa Hub and if you have any questions or would like to get involved, please reach out to me, Suzan Joy using this email address:
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