COTABATO CITY (March 9, 2023) – The Relief International organized an interactive round table discussion on the Role of Women in Peace Building with the theme “We for gender equity, inclusive, and peaceful society” under the WE RESOLVE (Women Engaged in Responsive Solutions to Conflicts and Violence in Mindanao) Project on March 7, 2023 at the Conference Hall, Alnor Hotel, Cotabato City.
The organizer invited various empowered women from Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) – Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), development partners, members of the mass media and the community leaders from Cotabato City, Special Geographic Areas (SGA) and Maguindanao.
The activity, which highlighted the celebration of women’s month, gave an opportunity to promote role of women in peace building and hosted by Jules Benitez and Zarah Kate Alih.
Lisa Dioneda Moalong, Project Manager of WE RESOLVE Project said, “We empower women for them to be our partner for peace.”
She acknowledged their other partners like Plan International, Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development (ACTED) Organization, Balay Mindanaw and the Bangsamoro Multimedia Network (BMN) Inc., which served as their production and documentation team.
The speaker in the event are Rohaniah Mohamad Sumail, Gender and Development (GAD) Coordinator of the Bangsamoro Women Commission (BWC) who represented Bainon G. Karon, the Chairperson, Bangsamoro Women Commission, Ustadza Anisa Taha- Arab, Chairwoman of Board of Director of the Noorus Salam National Women’s Council, Charmaine Mae J. Dagapioso-Bacongan, Executive Director of the Balay Mindanaw Foundation Inc., Norhaya Langco Indol – Grande, Barangay Chairwoman of Basak Malutlot, Marawi City, Bing Constantino of Relief International, Norsalam G. Bago, Representative of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Social Welfare Committee.
Media representative present as members of the panel of reactors were Faydiyah Samanodi Akmad, Executive Director of the BMN, Merna Dipatan from Bangsamoro Information Office of the Bangsamoro Government, and Daisy Mangod of DXMY RMN/iFm 90.9.
Relief International (RI) Country Director Rakesh Kumar Katal said in his opening message, “Today I seek in solidarity with Bangsamoro woman and man and the brave front liner respondent who foght pandemic and during decades of conflicts with the hope for the better future. A better future of sustainable and inclusive peace for all.”
He expressed his appreciation to the integral role of women in sustaining the peace as a nurturer of children and the community.
The women panellists emphasized the women’s role as community organizers, as mediators, human rights advocates, as development workers, community leaders, as policy makers and coordinators.
The BMN as media panel reactors asked about how the various organizations measured the effectiveness of their implemented program in the community they served.
Charmaine Mae Baconga answered “When they feel that they (organizations) are already insignificant in a community that means, the women are capable of resolving their issues and developed resolutions to their problems in the community and if they can initiate their own programs and activities that serve to the need of their fellow women, then, we exit because they can already stand on their own feet.”
Constantino also replied that the RI conducts case studies through qualitative and quantitative and produced it as their output and making documentary films on that matter.
Mariam Ali answered, “They measured it when they see that women in the barangays are becoming concerned in their own health conditions and participate in the Barangay Health Centers’ program and when they ensured that the knowledge and skills they brought to the women are being transferred to them.” ### (Radjamie A. Manggamanan/BMN-USM BSIR Intern/BangsamoroToday, Photo by Nhor-hamen S. Aplal)