Women must not be afraid of failure – María Eugenia: Values and Principles

Women’s roles must become part of the framework of the Co-operative Movement, said the Chairperson of the ICA Gender Equality Committee.

Women’s roles must become part of the framework of the Co-operative Movement, said the Chairperson of the ICA Gender Equality Committee.

María Eugenia Pérez Zea, a keynote speaker at the session,  gave an uplifiting speech about the role of women in the co-operative movement.

She said: “Co-operatives need to start from the outset of the legal framework, we to ensure we influence the rules and the statutes that governs the co-operative system.”

She added that women needed training and education, as well as the need to change the current paradigm that is rooted within us. The commitment women have to their families can often clash with their work in co-ops.

María added: “We want to be involved, we want to participate, sacrifices need to be made for women who want to be fully committed – we need to put in place procedures, the rules must be very clear here.”

“Just because you’re not stopping women from attending meetings it doesn’t mean you’re facilitating a women to attend a meeting.”

Perhaps women are more afraid to make decisions, she mused: “There is this feel of failure among women.” María continued by saying that women need learn from things and move on.

She highlighted the problems of violence to women, she said: “We need to tryto prevent violence. We need to speak out against them.”

Finally María ended with: “We’re not a minority, we are on equal footing with men, were are vulnerable, because we sometimes consider ourselves to be vulnerable. We need to demand these rights. We need to express solidarity with our fellow men and women, we need to make sure we’re all going in the same direction.”

María Eugenia Pérez Zea is also the secretary of the Board of Directors of ICA Americas and president of the ICA Americas Committee on Gender Equity.

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