People’s eye health does not depend exclusively on the ophthalmic problems they may suffer, there are many conditions of visual well-being such as hygiene, food, income, gender inequality, the environment…
That is why Eyes of the world has launched a new project in Mali to combat gender inequality and empower women with the ultimate goal of being able to make decisions and actions on their own health.
Funded by Zarautz City Council, an activity is being carried out to grant microcredits to vulnerable women so that they can carry out small projects. In addition, through CAFO, an association of women in the region, they are also provided with training in accounting and project management so that, with the money, they can create a business that provides them with autonomy and own resources.
This year, 50 women have been selected to receive these microcredits. Each will use their resources and skills to come up with a business that suits their circumstances. Most of the projects are aimed at transforming raw materials, mainly peanuts and products from goats, into a manufacturing that gains value. Once these initial projects have some solvency and the women can return the money, they will be used for projects by new entrepreneurs.
This project is based on a gender study conducted by the Foundation in Mali in 2011 that diagnosed a lack of resources for women to get eye care. And it is that, with 61.2%, it is one of the countries with the most inequality between men and women in the world. Therefore, employment for these women is a life-changing opportunity.
Hence, Eyes of the world seeks to teach them how to manage their own money, empower themselves and take advantage of this empowerment to go to health professionals when they need it and to have regular eye examinations.