The News

PPAF holds inspirational session with women from Balochistan

May 16, 2018

Saleha Bibi from Lasbela (R) and Asyah Bibi from Gwadar (L) narrating their journey of success

PPAF organised an inspirational session at its premises in Islamabad to share achievements made under its Italian funded Programme for Poverty Reduction (PPR) in Balochistan. The two activists Asyah Nasir and Saleha Bibi hailing from Gwadar and Lasbela districts respectively shared with the audience that how they managed to fight the taboo of keeping women away from participating in the social economic transformation. The two women were paid rich tribute for bringing change in the rigid and insular approach of society by assisting the poor and deserving people to avail livelihood opportunities, get education and access health facilities.

Saleha Bibi, resident of Goth Usman Khashkheli of District Lasbela in Balochistan shared that all 55 households of her village were poor with little access to education, health and other facilities. Women were particularly the most deprived in the rural areas, unaware of their basic rights and negligible role in decision-making, she added. Saleha said she made untiring efforts to create awareness among the women of her area about their social rights. She got training under the social mobilisation component of PPR, which helped her in convincing the village women to make efforts for their own uplift and that of the people in their surroundings. Saleha Bibi convinced the surrounding communities to obtain civic documents helping them avail civic rights and associated privileges. She created linkages with development stakeholders to construct latrines; pursued parents to enroll their children especially girls in schools. Due to her sheer commitment and conviction, Saleha became the Vice President of Local Support Organisation (LSO) Bank Murad in UC Sakran, District Lasbela. She also became the first ever woman president of the Village Organization Pukar.

Asyha Nasir, another determined woman who migrated from Turbat to the port city of Gwadar left her job with Pakistan Navy to teach the children of her area. She established a school in the open in her village with enrollment of 20 students, whose number had now grown to 115 students. Under PPR project, Aysah received training on health and nutrition after which she provides services in PPR supported Basic Health Unit at Gatti Dore and conducts community sessions to help raise awareness on basic health and hygiene among the women of her area. The PPR had played an important role in this regard. Aysah says, “I want to continue making efforts for my area and through linkages I want to solve more problems in the area like electricity and employment. If you are committed, then what can’t be achieved?”

Both Aysah and Saleha’s stories depict how the process of social mobilisation transforms ordinary women into change agents who are successful in influencing the traditional and rigid cultures like of rural Balochistan. Their accomplishments shows how women, when empowered can bring such powerful change in their communities.

APP http://www.app.com.pk/social-activists-role-highlighted-women-empowerment-balochistan/

Pakistan Today https://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2018/05/16/social-activists-role-for-women-empowerment-in-balochistan-highlighted/

Urdu Point included in top 100 websites providing access to happenings in Pakistan also picked the story that can be read at https://www.urdupoint.com/en/pakistan/social-activists-role-highlighted-for-women-345735.html