Young Women Development
YETT designs programs for promoting the meaningful participation of young women in development processes. These programs offer opportunities for young women to participate in different forums, equips young women with leadership skills and, gives them the platforms to use them.
Through programming, YETT provides capacity building for young women with in relevant areas such as Gender, Feminism, Confidence Building, Women’s Rights, Spirituality and Values as well as Sexual and Reproductive Health and more. In all of its programs YETT has successfully engaged young women through a quota system policy and by providing safe spaces for young women to develop capacity and engage on issues that affect them and youth in general. Ultimately, the exclusive spaces afforded to young women has resulted in an increase of quality participation through open participation and effective contribution.
YETT realizes that claiming space for young women is already challenging within a context of patriarchal attitudes and culture, where it remains difficult for women to break down barriers and access the same rights as boys and men. Therefore, YETT is continuously looking for opportunities to empower young women to influence in organizations and in society at large. While YETT aims to empower young women throughout all programming, the following interventions are undertaken to specifically facilitate the increased participation and representation of young women at all levels of engagement.
YETT continuously creates platforms to raise young women voices in national decision making processes; it is with great concern that YETT notes that young women are underrepresented at the decision making table across the board. Young women are not participating and occupying positions in the civic space because of various challenges ranging from the patriarchal system, lack of access to information, women’s portrayal in the media, institutional barriers, resources and discrimination based on gender, age, race, background, and so on. The lack of participation of young women in civic processes does not only limit their capacity to demand accountability but also reduces their access to socio-economic rights and services and has repercussions on society as a whole. In February 2019 YETT hosted the Young Women’s Summit as a way of creating a safe space for young women to engage, design concrete strategies and plan on how to strengthen their collective constructive and active engagement in civic processes.
Under the Youth Engage project, YETT ensures the participation of young women by convening caucuses that specifically seek to create safe spaces for young women to dialogue on issues affecting them. By ensuring that representatives from the Ministry of Gender, Women’s Affairs and Community Development are also participating in project activities, YETT facilitates interface with relevant policymakers at national level.
The Women Rise and Excel program focuses on building the leadership skills of young women and on providing inclusive spaces for promoting the participation of young women and girls in sustainable development. The program takes a deliberate approach in building the capacities of young women through trainings, mentorship and experiential learning; ensuring that they are economically empowered and do not face any gender-motivated violations of their rights.
The Mentoring and Empowerment Program for Young Women (MEMPROW) is a capacity building program for the self-empowerment of young women (15-21 years), focusing on increasing leadership capacities and social survival and analytical skills. It is a program that creates strong networks of intergenerational partnerships, providing continuous peer learning and mentorship for young women as a way of sustaining gender activism and strengthening the Zimbabwean Women’s movement.