Women`s Day hosted by the South African Embassy in Norway on the 15th August 2009.
“Together empowering women for development and gender equality”
Pan African Women`s Association was represented by Nene Bojang the project leader , with the following contributions:
Pan African Womens Association in Norway
Pawas Resource Group
Your Excellency, Ladies and Gentlemen and My Pawa Sisters in the audience.
As the ambassador has rightly mentioned in her speech, the empowerment of women and Gender equality cannot be achieved without the well being of Women.
But the struggle for empowerment is not only on the continent of Africa we as Pan African Women are still fighting that battle here in Norway.
I am therefore going to use my 5 minutes to discuss The Pan African Womens Resource Group Project that got funding From Health and Rehabilitation.
Pan African Womens Association (Pawa) Is an Arena Where Pan African Women can:
Have room to recognize the depth of their pain and hurt and collectively come together to find and share ways to heal themselves
Get in touch with factors in our lives that are causing particular pain especially those factors in our daily lives that undermine our capacity to be self- determining
Pan African female self recovery is an expression of a liberatory Political Practice
Choosing wellness is an act of political Resistance and we Pan African women need to undergo a process of self- recovery that can heal individual wounds that may prevent us from functioning fully
Pan African women in Norway believe that the realm of mental health that of psychic well-being is an important arena for the liberation of black women.
Traditional therapy, mainstream psychoanalytical practice, often does not consider race as an important issue, and as a result do not adequately address the mental health dilemmas of black people. Yet these dilemmas are very real .They persist in our daily lives and undermine our capacity to live fully and joyously.
It is important that Pan African Women talk to one another, that we talk to friends and allies for the telling of our stories enables us to name our suffering and to seek healing.
The roots of mental illness is invariably an interlocking system of lies that we have been told and lies we have told ourselves. Commitments to truth telling are the first step in any process of self recovery. It is therefore very important that black females who have been victimized by traumatic events like incest, rape FGM etc. speak openly about their experiences.