Women Have a Key Role to Play in Preserving our Environment.

Sophie Ngassa
Posted July 5, 2017 from Cameroon
Photo from google: woman carrying wood fuel
Women still have the main responsibility for meeting household needs

As the sun is hot and shines bright, Mambo heads to a nearby forest. Carrying a big bamboo basket on her back that is wider than her size. Mambo runs through the dust bare feet to go fetch wood fuel for her mother.

She had just returned from school and had a meal of fufu corn and vegetables. Mambo is on her 2 km journey happily chewing sugar cane.

That was 15 years ago in a small village. Mambo was the lone daughter and child of her mum. She had the task to fetch wood fuel for their home as part of her daily chores.

As time went by that forest got degraded as all other families rely on wood fuel for cooking and heating. The trees were gradually cut down and today that village is highly deforested. Presently the children go even further to fetch wood fuel for the family.

The inhabitants have destroyed the natural environment and women are especially engaged in this practice. Looking across this village you can observe the effects of erosion everywhere and the foundations of houses are exposed.

Till date the villagers still depend on wood as source of energy.

Today Mambo has become an environmental activist, working hard to fight deforestation which is one of the causes of climate change. She realized that women also play an important role in protecting the environment because they can have a strong impact on the amount of carbon emissions in our atmosphere.

She has experienced the fact that women’s decisions regarding cooking fuel, cooking technology and which foods they choose to buy have an impact on the amount of carbon emission released. In her community, women also often have a say in agricultural practices that have an impact because they can determine whether carbon is released or stored in agricultural soils and above ground biomass.

Mambo fights for the participation of women in the formulation, planning and execution of environmental policy. At the same time, the international community has recognized that without women's full participation, sustainable development cannot be achieved.

Women have a key role to play in preserving the environment and natural resources, and in promoting sustainable development.In many areas, women are the ones making household purchasing decisions at markets. Because of this women directly impact the amount of carbon emitted through the production, distribution, use and disposal of goods.

Generally, women still have the main responsibility for meeting household needs and are therefore a major force in determining consumption trends. To promote sustainable development, a number of governments have taken steps to incorporate a gender perspective into their national environmental policies and programs.

There is growing recognition of the need to strengthen women's capabilities to participate in environmental decision-making, by increasing their access to information and education, particularly in the areas of science, technology and economics.

Earth Emergency
This story was submitted in response to Earth Emergency.

Comments 21

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Amandalyn
Jul 06, 2017
Jul 06, 2017

Very informative and well written post! Deforestation is a terrible thing but I know it must feel as if the women have little alternative. Are there any forestry programs in your country that focus on getting women engaged? That would be great to read about, too.

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 06, 2017
Jul 06, 2017

Hello Amandalyn, Thanks for your great comment.The alternatives are not affordably for the villagers.I need to check on on forestry programs..

Jill Langhus
Jul 06, 2017
Jul 06, 2017

Hi Sophie. Thanks for sharing your story about Mambo and preserving our planet's beautiful resources:-)

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 06, 2017
Jul 06, 2017

Hello Jlanghus,Thanks for reading and commenting.

Jill Langhus
Jul 07, 2017
Jul 07, 2017

You're welcome:) Have a great day!

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 25, 2017
Jul 25, 2017

Thanks

Jill Langhus
Jul 26, 2017
Jul 26, 2017

You're welcome:)

Della Rae
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

I really appreciate this brave story and YOU!

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Dear Della, Thank you for increasing my motivation.

Olutosin
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

My sweet sister, this is very true, we have a great part to play in protecting the environment and we were built for that. God bless women and men of good will.

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Dear sister TTTT, Yes women have the potentials to do a lot of things.Together we will make things happen for a better future.

Mahnaz Harrison
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

Hello,

I agree with you that women have a major role to play.  Are you aware of the clean cookstoves that use renewable energy and not carbon fuel?  Let me know if you need help to navigate this area.  Please keep up the good work and bring awareness. 

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Hello Mahnaz, Yes I am aware, but still give me more info on how and where to acquire them.Thank you.

Karolina Lobrow
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

Thank you for sharing this story and your work - I agree that women are key players in developing environmental policies that will benefit their families and communities.

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Dear Karolona, Yes that's true.We need to stand up for a change. Thank you.

Alex DeCino
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

Thank you for Ngassa for sharing your story!  It is very important to preserve our planet's resources, and making conscious decisions about what we purchase is a great way to make an impact!

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Hello Alexdecino, Thanks for your great comment.

Emily Jensen
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

Thank you for sharing the story of Mambo, sister Sophie! You are so right: we as women HOLD THE POWER to heal the planet. It's such a joy to see you speak out on the environment, knowing you already are doing so much work to bring STEM education to girls in Cameroon. You are truly a multifaceted powerhouse! 

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Hello Emily, "We hold the power to heal the planet" this is very well said dear Jensen .Thanks for the kind words of encouragement. World Pulse has to my life life at right time to spark my up for ever.I have been able to produce tremendous impact after the ADC training.

Thanks a million for your great vision that fires up women around the globe. 

Daphne Luong
Jul 13, 2017
Jul 13, 2017

Sophie,

Thank you for the important work you are doing for our environment and contributing to preserving our planet for generations to come! 

Your plan to tackle the issue from multiple angles, from finding alternatives to affecting environmental policies is a very good approach.

Please keep updating us on progress.

Sophie Ngassa
Jul 18, 2017
Jul 18, 2017

Hello Daphne, Thanks for the great comment. I will update you.