The Institute for Young Women’s Development (IYWD) says it will continue facilitating Gender Responsive Social Services Delivery (GRSSD) which they co-created over the years from 2017 to 2021.
Speaking on the sidelines of a Celebratory Linking and Learning event to recognise collective achievements of the program which was done in Midlands and Mashonaland Central provinces, Sandra Zenda, IYWD projects coordinator said due to the successes they made to date, they would continue with the program.
IYWD’s intervention was focused on harnessing young women’s voices and collective power for Local Government accountability and Gender Responsive Social Services Delivery (GRSSD) with a thrust to capacitate young women with knowledge of local government structures, roles, functions, tools and skills to engage duty bearers and other stakeholders to improve social service delivery through a culture of engagement and social responsibility.
“Young women now understood the process of the local authority and local authorities took up young women as partners. Local authorities are now giving a listening ear to their issues, for example, in Mazowe and Guruve by-laws were being crafted after engagement. Another success is a beerhall that was transformed into a clinic pointing to a positive response to the need to have gender responsive service delivery in local authorities,” she said.
She said the major success of the initial intervention was increased participation of young women in Local government processes, decision making, and budget consultation meetings.
“Definitely there were challenges especially along the way because when we first started implementing this intervention, there were some realities we could not ignore.
“There was limited knowledge in terms of constitutional provisions for citizen engagements, there was not much understanding between the local authorities and young women.
“There was some kind of tension between young women, some citizens and local authorities, nistrust and also a lack of knowledge on the operations of the local government were other obstacles we had to face on our journey to achieve our set goals for the project,” she said.