JIS News

Fifty women, who have excelled in various fields, will be honoured by the Bureau of Women's Affairs (BWA) on International Women's Day (IWD) Thursday (March 8).

At a function slated for the Wyndham Kingston hotel, the women will be awarded for their achievements and contribution to national development.

Executive Director of the BWA, Faith Webster, told JIS News that those chosen were selected from “across all sectors of the society and in the Diaspora,” and represents just a sampling of women, who have contributed to the country’s progress over the past 50 years.

"So, it will be a specific Bureau of Women’s Affairs award to these women, recognising their contribution to nation building and to the development of the society,” she stated.

The award function is part of a week of activities planned by the Bureau to observe IWD under the theme: ‘Supporting Women’s Economic and Political Empowerment’. The activities, which will highlight the role of women, are also in keeping with the year-long ‘Jamaica 50’ celebrations.

They include a church service on Sunday (March 4) at the Meadowbrook United Church, 2 Flemington Drive, starting at 10:30 a.m. and a financial literacy seminar for women in the informal sector on Tuesday (March 6) at the Jamaica Conference Centre, downtown Kingston.

Mrs. Webster told JIS News that the financial seminar is mainly for women who operate micro businesses, including retailers of dry goods and cooked food.

"The objective is to increase their awareness in terms of financial services, access to credit, helping them to be more literate, overall, in terms of their finances and helping them to manage their businesses and to enhance their business skills," she explained.

On March 8, in addition to the award ceremony, there will be the launch of the national exposition and career fair for ‘Jamaican Women’s Economic and Political Empowerment’ at the Wyndham Kingston.

Mrs. Webster said the event, scheduled to take place from April 21 to 22 at the National Indoor Sports Centre, will showcase the resources available to women across the island, as well as provide opportunities for job seekers and entrepreneurs to network with potential employers and investors. It is being held in collaboration with the Dispute Resolution Foundation (DRF).

“It will also be a platform for business owners to showcase goods and services for women and girls,” she told JIS News.

Mrs. Webster said the Bureau is looking forward to very strong participation and support from the private and public sectors for the activities.


By E. Hartman Reckord, JIS PRO