The President, International Women Society (IWS), Mrs Izabella Abia-Okon, says there is need to raise more awareness about widows’ issues as well as advocate better facilities and opportunities for them.
Abia-Okon said this during the association’s International Widows Day (IWD) celebration with the theme: “DigitAll Widows“, on Friday in Lagos.
International Widows Day, celebrated every June 23, is a special day established by the United Nations (UN) dedicated to addressing the poverty and injustice faced by millions of widows and their dependents.
According to her, latest statistics by the UN show that 258 million widows and 585 million children need support globally.
The president said that widows face many challenges and IWD was significant because it is a day to acknowledge the struggles of widowed women and demand better facilities for them.
“Widows Day empowers all widows by demanding better facilities and opportunities for them as well as acknowledging the struggles of widowed women.
“It also addresses the regressive mentality of people regarding women and their place in the society while advocating the upliftment of women by making them self-sufficient,” she said.
Abia-Okon said that as part of events marking the Day, widows would be trained on how to maximise opportunities with innovation and technology.
“Through this training many of you will understand the difference between working smart and working hard.
“Technology makes it easier to connect to the world and you can begin to produce goods that are marketable worldwide,” she said.
The president thanked the UN for its conscious efforts at providing sustainable succour with designated dates for the upliftment of humanity.
Also, the Chairperson, Widows Trust Fund of IWS, Mrs Adebanke Adeola, said that the extensive opportunities digitalisation would bring to women’s businesses would further break gender barriers and accelerate equality.
Adeola, was represented by Mrs Gbemi Shasore, Trustee, IWS.
“In March this year when the UN celebrated the International Women’s Day, they decided to flag the theme ‘DigitALL Women’ for the extensive opportunities digitalisation brings to women’s businesses as a way of further breaking gender barriers and accelerating equality.
“It called for all involved to set the stage for innovation and technology as the launch pad for the future of transformative change and sustainability.
”At IWS we immediately saw it as a unique opportunity to extend it to you who can and will embrace the kind of emancipation that will yield bigger harvests of empowerment. Creating better avenues while still empowering you in the traditional ways.
“Using technology to enhance your businesses as well as being compliant with the digital age is what is trending because it is the new method of transacting maximally and empowering yourselves optimally.
“I want to wish our widows well and pray that you continue to find favour in your businesses so you can help yourselves and your families,” Adeola said.
In her remarks, Mrs Nkoli Obi-Ogbolu, a member of IWS, said the association had trained widows on how to use their phones to empower their businesses, and also gave palliatives to almost 300 widows.