Gender equality in Rwanda
As of 2018, the African country Rwanda ranks in the top 5 countries for gender equality. The idea of fairness that dominates this country arose after the genocide against the Tutsi that occurred in 1994. The government is committed to ensuring equal rights for women and men without prejudice to the principles of gender equality and complementarity in national development; these ideas are exhibited through the roles of Rwanda women in government, the respect for women’s education and the role of women in Rwanda healthcare.
The Rwanda government is set up to have at least thirty percent of its parliament members to be women; in an eighty-member parliament, 46 members were female in 2003. Inside Rwanda’s government, there is a Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion, a gender monitory office, and a commitment to gender-based budgeting that ensures the promotion of gender equality. The government supports programs like Women for Women International Rwanda, which focuses on women of the country becoming economically independent. The government also has promoted gender equality in Rwanda using the Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion. In one significant change, women have been given the same right as men to inherit land and in other factors like in some government post, military, same education.
Rwanda has all pushed for girls’ education since the mass genocide. In 2004, The Girls’ Education Task Force (GETF) was created under the Ministry of Education to promote education in young girls. Programs have been created to help educate girls who may have previously been kept out of school and allows them to receive the education they have been denied. Programs for girls’ equality in education are not for girls only, though; programs have been implemented that allow both boys and girls to discuss women’s education. The Aikiah Institute is the first all-female college in Rwanda and supports equality between genders by "preparing their students to be the future of the nation".
Equality in healthcare
Rwanda has made many changes to promote equity for all, with one category that they have worked to improve in being healthcare. Malaria, HIV/AIDS and cholera were once prevalent in Rwanda; however, since the mass genocide that happened in 1994, Rwanda has been working to improve these conditions. The Rwandan government has been partnered with Harvard’s Public In Health and global health advocate Paul Farmer; with this aid, the Rwandan government has completely re-standardized its health system. The promotion of health for women has been led by Rwanda health minister, Agnes Binagwaho. Binagwaho has pushed for equality in the healthcare system by advocating for young girls to receive the HPV vaccine, which many do not ever receive. To teach young girls about health, One UN Rwanda leads discussion groups on reproductive health and contraceptives to college women.
Advancing gender equality
Although Rwanda outlawed marital rape in 2009, there is still some work left to do in for gender equality in Rwanda. As of 2015, 21 percent of women in Rwanda experienced physical and/or sexual intimate partner violence (still a large improvement from when a vast number of women were raped during the genocide). Organizations like the Rwanda Women’s Network have been created to help fight against domestic violence and gender-based violence.
Women in Rwanda have also been working to close the gender-based wage gap. In 2018, Rwandan women make eighty-eight cents to a man’s dollar, which puts Rwanda as number 25 for economic equality among genders.
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