APF

Summary Report of Remmoho

APF Women’s Group

Friday 14 September 2007

The following aims were developed in a series of meetings with a group of women in the APF and a workshop with women from the APF and a number of other movements on 21 April.

Through the space of the discussions and the workshop women shared their experiences as activists in their private and public lives.

Aims of Remmoho (All of us together)

To create a space for women to support each other To empower women, build self esteem and confidence To develop an awareness of the roles and function of different institutions e.g. the justice, education, health systems and the impact of these institutions on women. To empower women to deal with these institutions To create a platform for women to break the silence so that as women in the social movements we have a space to talk about issues affecting us Change the nature of the space of the movements and create a women friendly environment To take up the issues that movements are not taking up from a women’s point of view Encourage women’s participation and develop women leadership Recruiting more women into the struggle for social justice Establishing opens spaces for women in the movements and those interested in joining the movements To change the traditional concept of childcare and to develop progressive educational activities for the children of the women participating in Remmoho

Remmoho activities

Six planning and educational activities of approximately 10 women from the APF. These activities have had 3 aims: a) To empower us as women to take into account our private and public lives. b) For us as women to share our reality as social activists. c) To construct a strategy to bring women in the social movements together and to create an agenda. An agenda that addresses the issues of women’s participation and women’s struggles as part of the struggle for social justice.

A workshop of approximately 30 women from the APF, 3 local women’s groups and 2 other social movements. In this workshop we shared and analysed our reality as women across the movements and began mapping out strategies for the development of a women’s agenda. This workshop was also the first attempt to have organized activities for the children of the women participating in the workshop.

Relationship to the APF

This is an initiative from a group of women in the APF. From it’s inception the group was clear that this initiative should not take the form of a new APF subcommittee where the issues could be ghettoized into “women’s issues in a women’s subcommittee”. Which is often the norm in mass movements. There was also an agreement not to form a gender committee of men and women replicating the way issues are discussed in the movements where it is impossible to construct a women’s agenda. Often the gender committees focus on women’s gender roles not to critically analyse these roles but to entrench them e.g. we end up thinking about issues like childcare, projects for women and not the power dynamics in the organization.

Opportunities

Remmoho aims to be a women’s space created by women in the APF to facilitate the empowerment of women in the APF and in the social movements more generally through a common agenda.

Challenges

Recognition and respect by the male comrades of the political value of the space women have created To maintain the space without falling into the trap of embracing the traditional power dynamics in the movements To be able to convince the social movements of the women’s agenda being created by Remmoho


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