Mrs. Rachael Ruppee, Executive Director and Founder of Development Initiative for Community Impact, DICI (3rd right); Lelekumo Helen of Working Fingers International Initiative, WOFII (Left); flanked by vegetable farmers and beneficiaries of fertilisers at the event.

By Emeka Nwokocha

The Executive Director and Founder of Development Initiative for Community Impact, DICI, a non governmental organisation (NGO), Mrs. Rachael Ruppee, has said that women play indispensable roles in the development of the society and humanity the world over, even as she called on Nigerians to celebrate the strides and accomplishments of women to mark this years (2019) International Women’s Day.

Ruppee said this on Thursday 21 March, 2019, when DICI held a fun packed and educative session to celebrate women in Okurode Urhobo community in Warri, headquarters of Warri South local government area of Delta state, as it marks this year’s International Women’s Day.

Ruppee told the enthusiastic crowd of women that March 8 was set aside by the United Nations as International Women’s Day, to celebrate women all over the world every year. She added that women across the world who have contributed immensely to driving societal develompent are also honoured, nothing that the occasion is also used to advocate for the rights of women with special emphasis on gender equality.

She said, “International Women’s Day holds on March 8 every year. It is a day set aside by the United Nations to celebrate women all over the world in recognition of their roles in ensuring societal wellness. In addition to celebrating women, the rights of women are being promoted with a passionate call for gender equality across board.

Mrs. Rachael Ruppee, Executive Director and Founder of DICI, speaking at the event

“The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day celebration is “Balance for Better” and it gives us the opportunity to learn, spread awareness, and figure out what actions to take next to assert ourselves in the mainstream of activities in the society.”

Continuung, Ruppe stressed the need to shun all forms of discrimination against women in every facet of human endeavour. She was critical of the place of women in engendering development, noting that “when women are given equal opportunities to success, everyone is empowered, but when women are denied opportunities to develop their potentials, the society is prevented from moving forward.”

She charged the women to be united, courageous and forward looking in pursuit of their career and businesses, even as she called on Nigerian women to take their pride of place in the Nigerian society by aspiring to greater heights, but shun acts of bickering and gossiping that often derail their path to achieving their goals.

The keynote speaker at the occasion, Mrs. Ayo Nefertiti Okotie, of Neferok Development Initiative, while identifying the yawning gap between men and women in relation to economic and political opportunities in Nigeria and across the globe, said the International Women’s Day inspires women to shake off their naivety and make their voice heard in government, politics, including making quality contributions to the growth of the global economy.

She told the women that they have the power to help create an equal world that enables a symbiotic relationship between men and women.  “But we need to step up to the challenge,” she noted.

“Against the backdrop of scaling the challenges women face across the world, the International Women’s Day inspires you to shake off your fears, inferiority complex, and take up your gauntlet to participate in the social, economic and political development of your society. To make this possible, you must be innovative, industrious and roundly committed to your goals,” Okotie stated.

Continuing, she implored the women to take part in active politics and influence public policy initiatives and directions, even as she noted the importance of education in building capacity in the women, and achieving desired goals.

Keynote Speaker, Mrs. Nefertiti Okotie, of Neferok Development Initiative

Okotie said, “When I mention education, I do not limit it to the type you acquire at the university. I simply mean financial education as it applies to thinking in a new way; I mean innovation that can drive your business or career path to greater heights.”

She added, “in a nutshell, whatever vocation or trade you are doing, try to be an expert in it, by discovering your skills and talents and improving on them. Get a mentor to develop your skills, and be creative.”

The event created a long episode of excitement for the women who had a swell time. They appreciated the organiser of the fun packed event, DICI, for deeming it important to mark the International Women’s Day with the women in Okurode Urhobo community, even as they described the event as a novel development.

The event was rounded off with presentation of fertilisers to four women to improve their vegetable farms.

Present at the event were representatives of other nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) which include Oritsegbubemi Sybil of WIPNET; Olasehinde Kemi of Ovie Brume Foundation (OBF); Lelekumo Helen of Working Fingers International Initiative (WOFII); Aghwarianovwe Elehor of Ideal Women Advancement Initiative; and The Healthy Real For Valued Entrepreneurship (THRIVE).





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