October 15 – International Day of Rural Women

The International Day of Rural Women is observed annually on 15th October all over the world.

Key points:

The day recognizes the major role of women and girls in ensuring the sustainability of rural households and communities, improving rural livelihoods and overall well-being.  Unfortunately, in many countries, rural women face many challenges.

From 2016, the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare observed the day as the Rashtriya Mahila Kisan Diwas to increase the active participation of women in agriculture.

 

Theme:

The theme for 2020 International Day of Rural Women is “Building rural women’s resilience in the wake of COVID-19,” to create awareness of these women’s struggles, their needs, and their critical and key role in our society.

Rural women are getting adversely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rural Women:

Rural women are often involved agriculture and livestock production. Many rural women are open to innovation, are financially independent, and have completed higher education.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) states that with improved technology and access to the required financial resources, women could increase plantation yields by up to 30%. This would reduce the number of undernourished people throughout the world.

The gender pay gap in rural areas is as high as 40% and less than 20% of landholders worldwide are women.  Moreover, rural women play a pivotal role in agriculture and its various processes but still owning land is a distant dream for them.

Restricted mobility, disrupted supply chains, and increased unpaid and domestic work are some of the many problems rural women are facing. All these problems need immediate attention and action in the right direction.

History:

The United Nations General Assembly established the day on 18 December 2007 and was observed for the first time in 2008.