The International Rural Women Day will be observed in 58 districts this year. Today in a press conference the national committee on observation of the International Rural Women Day has declared this plan. The conference was held in the National Press Club, Dhaka. It has been informed that, the theme of the day for this year is `Claim the rights of women participation in Climate Adaptation and Mitigation. The organizers stated that, from all sorts of activities of the celebration of the day, demand for ensuring participation of women, specially rural women in the plan and implementation level of climate adaptation or mitigation will be upheld.
Mustafa Kamal Akanda, Coordinator of the national committee moderated the program while Chairman of the organization Swapan Guho was in the chair. Among others Vice-chairman Shamima Akhter and three Members Firoza Begum, Asif Iqbal and Nahida Sultana were present.
Mustafa Kamal Akanda said, Bangladeshi CSOs and NGOs have been observing this day since 2000 with their own fund. Under the National Committee there are district committees who are implementing the district level activities. In 2011 the day was observed in 56 districts. Rally, discussion along with special recognitions for the contribution to uphold women rights were in the list of activities.
Shamima Akhter said, the problems of Climate change in Bangladesh are visible now. Women are the most vulnerable to all sorts of disaster. During any disaster women think of their children first and then there are responsibilities of the father and mother in laws. They cannot think of their safety first. Thus women, especially the rural women become most vulnerable to all sorts of disaster.
Firoza Begum said, scarcity of drinking water is increasing in various part of Bangladesh. Since rural women are mainly engaged in collecting drinking water, their sufferings are being increased due to climate change and other natural impacts. One research shows that, a rural woman is to walk 10-14 kilometers daily for collecting drinking water.
Asif Iqbal said, if we analyze the types of the victims of natural disaster we will find that the biggest number are women. In 1991 cyclone 71% of the dead were women of the 20-44 years.
Nahida Sultana said, the number of climate forced migrants in Bangladesh is increasing. Migration of any male member creates huge suffering for many female family members.
Swapan Guho said, the negative impact of climate change on Bangladesh is now clear and recognized. On the other hand, it is also recognized that, the rural women are the most vulnerable to the climate change impact. Unfortunately women participation in the plan and implementation level of climate adaptation and mitigation is poor. That is why we are demanding that, women participation is must. We also demand that the vulnerability of women should be recognized in other women rights or human rights documents. There should be special quota for the women in regards of fund distribution for the climate change adaptation and mitigation.
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