Basseterre, St. Kitts (SKNIS): Empowering women is critical to the health and social growth of families, communities and countries. With this in mind, the Honourable Isalean Phillip, Minister of State responsible for Social Development and Gender Affairs said that when women are empowered, the entire nation benefits.
During her appearance on the debut edition of “Infocus”, the new SKNIS Television and Radio Programme on Wednesday, March 01, 2023, Minister Phillip reflected on the well-known African Proverb “If you educate a man, you educate an individual. But if you educate a woman, you educate a nation. ”
“That is essentially because we recognize in our context that we have a majority of matriarchal households and so, of course, if you empower a woman financially, you know you are also feeding her children. She will make sure that her children are well cared for,” said Senator Phillip. “When you bring women into spaces that were perhaps predominantly represented by men, you are bringing a different perspective. What women add to spaces are new ideas, new ways of doing things and we need that. It will help the bottom line for a business that has a Board of men if they have one or two women on that Board to be able to increase the profitability for everyone,” Minister Phillip added.
Minister Phillip further stated that when women are empowered, living safe, fulfilled and productive lives, they can reach their full potential, which will then cause them to contribute their skills to the workforce while raising happier and healthier children.
“In this instance, everybody can benefit. And so, it is a matter of incorporating the full scale of competence and abilities that we have available to us in our human population so that we can all benefit in ways that we may not have imagined,” she said. “Maybe before, we did not necessarily include women in certain spaces or women that did not have as big a voice or maybe women were just not necessarily able to access those spaces. And so when we include women, everybody benefits. Our children have healthier life outcomes and our men benefit because of what is already established.”
The Minister’s comments are in time for the observation of International Women’s Day on March 08, 2023. Notably, the Department, in conjunction with Women Empowering Girls (WEG), will be hosting an Award Ceremony and Empowerment Toast at Government House under the auspices of Her Excellency Dame Marcella A. Liburd GCMG, JP.