Ruth, 37: “I’ll teach my daughters about their rights”

Ruth, 37: “I’ll teach my daughters about their rights”
5th May 2017

“Many women here are not married and are finding it hard to live a good life.”

Ruth is a mother of 7. She is proud to be. Ruth is happy here in Busembatia. She is glad to be able to further her education. Her mother lives in nearby Namatumbe. She’s still alive and for that Ruth is thankful. “I am happy with my family. I am happy to be married and have a home to live in.” Many women here are less fortunate. They have to raise a lot of children alone, says Ruth, because men chase them away.

“If someone fails to marry, that’s a very big failure. Then you are not a good community member.”

It is a common problem. Ruth has seen it happen to women in her community. Women will have children with a man and believe that to be enough prove of marriage. Men, she says, are desperate and often unsatisfied with their wife. “When he sees a beautiful women he tries. In that desperation he produces a lot of children without self control.” He will then ignore his responsibilities. The women are left to fend for themselves. They will not have a marriage certificate. “They have nothing to fall back on.”

“Women should know how to go into marriage. They should know they are not supposed to be mistreated”

The Rights and Advocacy programme drew a big crowd in Majengo. “There was a truck with a WIL Uganda banner and Joseph was announcing to come. We rushed to go there.”
Ruth feels really good after learning about her rights. “It was new information.” She now knows all the steps to getting married. She talks about certificates and rights after divorce. Her and other women in the community now understand that they have a right to speak, to medical care, and the right not to be beaten.

“I’ll teach my daughters about their rights.”

There is, according to Ruth, improvement to be made, but in Busembatia things are moving in the right direction. “There is some equality, to a small extent. At least now women can be headmistress like a man can be headmaster.”

Ruth will teach her children about women’s rights and children’s rights. She learned that women and children have a right to education, and she is keen on exercising it. Her husband is supportive and very happy to see his wife learning. “I’m seeing the progress in my family. She will be able to communicate in English and know how our children are performing in school.”

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