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May 29, 2018

Human Rights Training for Women and Girls

The Young Women’s Christian Association today launched a new project AHRMED—Addressing Human Rights for More Equitable Development. Funded by the European Union, the initiative is expected to provide human rights awareness training for at least five hundred women and girls in three districts, namely: Belize, Cayo and Stann Creek. By increasing the knowledge and capabilities of this vulnerable group, the goal is that they will be empowered and protected against human rights violations. So who are these women and girls? The population are fifteen years and older and fall in the low income bracket; they are also indigenous people, differently-abled, immigrants and students.


Sheree Smiling Craig

Dr. Sheree Smiling Craig, President, Y.W.C.A.

“Human rights is actually one of the mantras of World Y so we have been very involved and active in promoting human rights in the World Y organization. And in Belize, we do whatever we could by partnering with agencies locally who are more advocates for this area and we are always present in advocating. In addition, whenever we have any programs here with Y that is always a main area that we will review and target with our students or whichever target group we are working with. We have used a lot of human rights advocacy with the project where we had rural women engaging in skills learning and business skills development so that they were aware of their human rights.”


Kiri Lizama

Kiri Lizama, Project Coordinator, AHRMED

“We signed on in November. It is a two year project and after that what we see, what we find out, there may be room for development, for us to further engage, for us to write up for a new project. So I can’t speak if there will be, but definitely depending on what we see there is a possibility.”



“How did you identify your target populations and why were these selected and key focus areas?”


Kiri Lizama

“So we have looked at indigenous populations, vulnerable persons, marginalized persons—it’s really just to look at where we are seeing issues and for us, we have really targeted women and girls and as the Y we’re a bit unapologetic about this is our target area; that’s our mandate. In other activities we do engage youth which includes young men as well. But for this project, we are really looking at just focusing on women and girls just because of the social issues out there.”

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