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Empowering Women: Bridging the Gap on Equal Pay Day


March 12 marked Equal Pay Day in the United States, a symbolic date representing the number of days women have to work into the current year just to make the same amount of money men made in the prior one. Though different countries observe this day on different dates, the reality remains the same everywhere – the persistent gender pay gap that continues to impact women worldwide. Did you know that, on average, women around the world earn only 82 cents for every dollar earned by men? (Source: World Economic Forum) This stark reality underscores the urgent need to address inequalities in the workplace, starting with equal pay for equal work. At ImpactHope, we recognize the importance of this issue and are committed to empowering women to overcome barriers to financial equality.

Project Showcase: Making a Difference

Against this backdrop, initiatives like our Women’s Empowerment Program in Kenya take on added significance. In Kenya, agriculture provides the primary source of livelihood for a large majority of the population, accounting for more than two-thirds of employment and almost half of Kenya’s GDP. The agricultural sector is particularly ‘feminized,’ with up to 80 percent of rural women participating in agricultural activities. Although women form the backbone of Kenya’s economy, they are often excluded from the decision-making process, which affects their everyday lives.

“When we first attended the consultations, it was tough to point out one problem in particular because women are being held back on so many levels here,” recalls Millicent, a 58-year-old mother of five with a family farming business in maize and beans production. As a housewife, she has had to overcome many societal barriers. Millicent says she felt unsure whether her input in the consultations would be taken seriously because “some people simply do not think women are worthy of being listened to.”

Millicent is from the Kopere cluster.

In rural Kenya, women like Millicent are still denied the right to own land, access credit, or even receive an education in some areas. As a result, 60 percent of Kenya’s women live in absolute poverty.

To Millicent’s pleasant surprise, the consultations resulted in KEDHAP’s food security program.

“By bringing together people from different ethnicities, everyone was given the opportunity to speak up and identify the pressing needs in our community, including access to food security,” said Millicent. “As a result, we decided to pool our resources into a revolving fund to support women involved in this precarious sector.”

Impact and Progress

As a step in this direction, relieving women from time-consuming tasks such as fetching water and firewood, and food processing can allow them more time for productive work and would enable their children to attend school. KEDHAP’s Food Security ministry works to provide interventions to alleviate their tasks in a way that will significantly enhance their contribution to household food security. By providing training, mentorship, and financial support to women entrepreneurs, we’re not only bridging the gap in income but also fostering a culture of empowerment and equality. Through this program, women are not just earning a livelihood; they’re breaking barriers and reshaping their communities for the better.

Since its inception, our Women’s Empowerment Program has seen remarkable success stories unfold. From increased incomes to newfound confidence, the ripple effects of empowerment extend far beyond the individual. As these women succeed, they become agents of change, inspiring others to dream big and pursue their goals without fear of discrimination or inequality.

What Does The Future Look Like?

As we commemorate Equal Pay Day, let us renew our commitment to achieving gender equality in the workplace.  At ImpactHope, we believe that every woman deserves equal pay for equal work. Join us in our mission to empower women, challenge stereotypes, and create a world where everyone has the opportunity to thrive, regardless of gender.

KEDHAP Border B Women's group widows sorting out tomatoes from the group farm ready for the market.

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