"I got to understand the innate value of women. I related it to myself, it makes me stronger as a woman. We have a lot that we are capable of doing as women. We should reveal our strength that we have as women."
Zainab is a mother and a teacher from Bakuli, Kampala, Uganda. Zainab is an avid volunteer and describes herself as a kind, caring mother, a peacebuilder and a humanitarian who looks forward to supporting people in all communities.
With her joyous personality, Zainab dreams to be a prominent woman leader in humanitarian work in her community. Just 6 months ago, she founded her own NGO, “Women Initiative for Prosperity Uganda” and she dreams to make it shine, grow and reach a wider group of people. Dr.Sanook Kang inspired her to start her NGO.
Zainab’s GPWLA journey was one of learning, discovery and strength. Zained enhanced her leadership skills and learnt project management, networking, partnership and proposal writing. She learnt about GPWLA in 2018 when she met Dr. Kang in a convention in Kamapala, Uganda.
As a part of the GPWLA capstone project, Zainab initiated her project (Project Name) where she aimed to solve the problem of Gender Based Violence in Uganda through sports. She decided to work at grassroot and hence, targeted school students of 13-16 years old as there are differences and separation between boys and girls.
“Through all the sporting activities that I’ve done, I realized you can be in the field and court, but when you are with someone who you are not friends with, but planning, exchanging signals, communicating, you find yourself becoming friends, because you are on the same team, the same activity.
Zainab understands the incredible power of sports.It brings people together as all play together and feel different. It works as a tool to bridge the gap on differences, and brings together different sides of the conflict. Hence, being a sportsperson herself, she decided to use sports to curb gender based violence starting at a young age. She believes that sports bring people together, work together, appreciate each other and be in the position of cooperation through the program. She further added that GBV is a global problem and sports is a powerful tool on peacebuilding as all play despite their differences
GBV is a global issue and sometimes, sports is a powerful tool for peacebuilding.as it brings people together to work, cooperate and appreciate each other. With a total of 12 sessions, the students played, interacted, talked about gender with each other and gave feedback.
However, one of the major challenges she faced was the Covid19 which delayed her 2nd cycle of her project. She also faced the difficulty of approval from schools and coordinating time for the program. While, Covid19 is still a challenge, she overcame the others by convincing the school principal by talking about the positive results of the program and rescheduling time to make sure all activities were done.
GPWLA helped her understand her strength as a women leader and understand the innate value of women . This made her strong and appreciate the capacity of women. She supports GPW’s vision of One Family Under God. She says, ““One Family under God” makes so much sense to me. Regardless of the differences of tribe, races and religions, we are one family under God. This is a belief I hold in my day to day life.”
GPW made her know about core values and she believes in GPW’s Peace Begins in the Home. She expressed that,
“Peace Begins in the Home, I got to realize and appreciate it. If we don’t have peace in our respective homes, we cannot promote peace in the community. In the home, it is about the heads of the family- father and mother- and if we are not peaceful as a couple then our whole family will not be peaceful and we cannot promote peace with others. It unveiled the fact that we need to promote peace in the home and then, we can be in the position to pass it on to the community. “
Zainab resonates much with teamwork and appreciates it a lot more after GPWLA. She realized that not everything can be done on our own. Coordination and trust among your teammates makes sure that the program was done effectively.