Message of President Wavel Ramkalawan on the occasion of International Women’s Day - 8 March

07 March 2022 | Gender

Celebrating women in their social, economic, political and ecological achievements is what we are commemorating today on the occasion of International Women’s Day. Women are pillars of our economic development and the agents for sustainable growth ensuring a high standard of life for the family and society.

The United Nation’s theme for women’s day this year is Gender Equality today, for a sustainable tomorrow. This theme is upcoming as it allows us to reflect on the contribution of women in Seychelles and across the globe in the fight against one of the greatest threats to our sustainable tomorrow - Climate Change.

Globally, the same depressive narrative is continually being iterated that woman are victims of climate change and are vulnerable to disaster risks. This, because they are more financially disadvantaged than their male counterparts and are most dependent on natural resources that are most at risk of climate changes.

However, we should never neglect the continuous efforts of women and young girls in leading climate initiatives. Women are key to the mitigation, response and adaptation strategies of this climate crisis.

Women are the custodians of resources in their homes and in the community; they are pro-active in reporting and the first to respond to climate disasters which affect them both directly and indirectly.

Even in our small country, we have seen women who are leaders in voluntary climate action campaigns and groups. They are some of the most vocal activists on preserving our environment and perhaps even the more successful ones; women make up the majority of our government sectors dealing with climate change and sustainability with 55% at senior and leadership positions. It is equally important to note the active participation of young girls in climate change initiatives. On this note I want to commend and applaud these girls and women for their contributions.

As much as we applaud our women and their initiatives, we must also invest in ensuring that proper infrastructure and mechanisms are in place so that generational equality is maintained in our attempt for sustainability.

Women leadership in the fight against climate change is crucial. Hence each one of us - women and men, must encourage our young girls and boys to become leaders, to understand the importance of equality and empower them to work effectively for our tomorrow.

Additionally, it is anticipated that women play a critical role in the development of our blue economy, a new frontier that requires new innovative ways of thinking. Women could be considered to be endowed with significant innovative thinking skills, considering that they are often sources of inspiration of ingenious ideas and creations, and this could be illustrated through how our female forebears from humble beginnings singlehandedly managed to make ends meet.

On this note, I would to like to take a stance and acknowledge women from all walks of life who are engaged and are willingly, voluntarily taking climate action today for a healthier and a more sustainable tomorrow!

Happy Women’s Day!

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