Cameroon women are not at the center of decision making on issues that impact their daily lives because they are underrepresented in decision making processes. The challenges they face are most often interpreted by men in Council, parliamentary and after April 14 2013 senatorial sittings. I believe it’s true we can place ourselves in people’s shoes but we can’t feel their pain enough to speak it out with all clarity and lay much emphasis till we find solutions in the books i.e. policies and laws, monitor field actions and hold them accountable were they fall short. Long-lasting social change will not happen without women’s participation and empowerment. Women and men need to join forces and work in one voice to bridge the existing gap.
Web 2.0 to me is the bridge, the fact that it allows for participatory information sharing open doors for shared opinions and stories which amplifies the voice of women. The fact that the content is user generated tells me and tells the world this is the level of pain women feel because it comes from the horse’s mouth. The fact that it gives room for design and collaboration is relieving because joint actions and campaigns can stem up from here.
Web 2.0 brings with it many solutions to the global women’s empowerment movement. To begin with, it serves as a platform were women all over the world can freely share their story and make their voices heard without being interrupted by men as it will be in actual decision making sessions were women form a minority. While it gives opportunity for women to be inspired and motivated to lead actions in their country through shared best practices from other countries, it equally strengthens the women’s empowerment movement through connections and linkages of like – minded women who in collaboration can influence global decisions or serve as catalyst to global change reactions on issues affecting women.
Young women in my country face a great deal of challenges; they are being raped, have their breast ironed, not schooled, underemployed and over worked. I believe these ills persist because of silence, parents negotiating over some bottles of peer on a rape case, perpetrators walking the streets free and worse, victims being blamed for the crime. To a great extend I believe young women are ignorant of their bodies, their rights and what violence actually means and where to take cases to in a corrupt world like the one we are living in. Web 2.0 gives me and these young women the opportunity to share amongst ourselves and the world what we are facing, to educate ourselves on how to best solve our challenges and to connect and learn from our peers worldwide, best ways to protect and heal ourselves from or trauma. Web 2.0 is our council, our Parliament and our Classroom.Voices of Our Future Application: Empowerment and Web 2.0