SEWODA ends stakeholders’ dialogue in Maryland
By Patrick N. Mensah, Maryland county
The Southeastern Women Development Association (SEWODA) with support from USAID and Democracy International (ID) has ended a daylong stakeholder’s meeting in Maryland county to increase awareness on women’s participation in politics.
SEWODA is a non-governmental, not-for-profit, non-political humanitarian organization that operates in five counties in Southeast Liberia, namely; Sinoe, Grand Kru, River Gee, Grand Gedeh and Maryland, respectively.
The organization aimed at implementing Election and Democracy Activity (EDA) – a project funded by USAID, targeting three districts and twelve communities in Maryland county.
The meeting was held at the organization’s office in Harper City, bringing together some key stakeholders, including SEWODA National Coordinator, Madam Helen Torh Turo; Mr. Belleh G. Tarr, Program Officer; Pleebo Statutory District Superintendent, Alloysius William; Karloken Statutory District Superintendent, Solomon Johnny; Civil Society Organizations, youths, representatives from the disabled community, Police, City Mayor, market superintendents, rural women heads, and gender coordinators, among others.
Washington Nah Toe, Field Supervisor of SEWODA, said three districts and twelve communities targeted include Harper District, Pleebo Statutory District and Karluway District, respectively.
In Harper, the project targets New Kru Town, Hoffman Station, Airfield, Stadium Road, while in Pleebo Statutory District, it covers Pleebo City, Old Sodoken, New Sodoken, Gbolobo, and in Karluway, it targets Garloken, Wutuken, Malalue and Tubaken, respectively.
Field Supervisor Toe disclosed that targeted beneficiaries totaled 2,439, including 1,724 females and 705 males.
He pointed out that the project duration is 13 months from November 17, 2022, to December 14, 2023, with a goal of increasing civic awareness of marginalized groups to create a platform for greater sense of community, better leadership and reduced election-related violence at the local level.
According to him, the project costs US$45, 000 and is aimed at increasing civic knowledge and engagement as well as reduce bias towards women in leadership.
It also seeks to develop creative and appealing audio/visual content products that highlight the roles of government, importance of citizens’ participation and engagement, promote access to information about civic rights and responsibilities.
Mr. Toe said the organization also seeks to increase knowledge of women, youth and people living with disabilities and marginalized groups of their basic civil rights.
“Let me say this, this training is intended to brighten the minds of the participants and empower our women during the pending elections”, he added.
He commended the participants and encouraged them to spread the message and knowledge acquired. In response, the participants lauded the heads of SEWODA especially, USAID and ID for the opportunity, while promising to serve as ambassadors of change. Editing by Jonathan Browne