Rural Women at a glance
Rural women comprise more than one quarter of the total world population. 500 million women live below the poverty line in rural areas. Women produce 60-80 per cent of basic foodstuffs in sub-Sahara Africa and the Caribbean. Women perform over 50 per cent of the labour involved in intensive rice cultivation in Asia. Women perform 30 per cent of the agricultural work in industrialised countries. Women head 60 per cent of households in some regions of Africa. Women meet 90 per cent of household water and fuel needs in Africa. Women process 100% of basic household food stuffs in Africa.
"Rural women the world over are an integral and vital force in the development processes that are the key to socio-economic progress. Rural women from the backbone of the agricultural labour force across much of the developing world and produce 35-45% of Gross Domestic Product and well over 50% of the developing world's food. Yet, half a billion rural women are poor and lack access to resources and markets." (Geneva Declaration for rural women 1992).
Women at a glance
Status of Women
Women and Education
Women and the Economy
Women and Population
Women and Health
Women and Violence
(The statistics are culled from a variety of sources and are valid as of December 1999 according to UN DPI/Rev.1.
Why a Prize for women's creativity in rural life?
What changes does the Prize for women's creativity in rural life catalyze?
What do Laureates do with the prize money?
Mary Robinson, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
"... It is with great pleasure that I welcome this excellent initiative to award in Geneva the Prize for women's creativity in rural life and celebrate World Rural Women's Day. I would like to convey my best wishes and salute the Women's World Summit Foundation..."
Dialogue Nord-Sud, Cameroon
"...We appreciate the efforts of your organization to work for the implementation of women's rights. We send you total support."
ONG SAPHTA, Niger
"...We are happy to have discovered your organization and congratulate you on the empowerment you are to rural women."
Zambian Women in Agriculture, Zambia
"...a brilliant idea for you to create and initiate the Women's World Summit Foundation but also a very inspiring and motivating one. A million thanks on behalf of Zambian Women in Agriculture. The community based organization has not only achieved local or national recognition but a slot in the Women's World Summit Foundation, thus creating history."
Mouvement des Travailleurs Ruraux Sans Terre, Brazil
".We congratulate you for founding the Women's World Summit Foundation which is a boon to rural women and children..."
International Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture IICA, Costa Rica
"...We are very interested in co-sponsoring your Foundation's campaigns to promote WWSF and the annual award of the "Prize for women's creativity in rural life", and thus becoming an official sponsor of the campaign..."
Mercy and Grace Charitable Trust, India
"...we thank God for the wonderful service your foundation is doing for the welfare and development of women and children who live below the poverty line via your empowerment programs..."
Self-Employed Women's Association SEWA, India
"...we thank you for your encouragement and support and we are all so proud of WWSF efforts in bringing visibility to the struggle of poor rural women..."
Rural Women Welfare Organization, Pakistan
"...WWSF has provided a powerful platform and fruitful campaign for the development of rural women..."
Center for Conflict Resolution, Zambia:
"... I have read your very impressive July 2001 Global Newsletter. I found the contents most interesting and inspiring. The sisterly spirit of your organisation is apparent and I am impressed by the fact that you focus on ordinary women who in small ways are making a tremendous impact on their own lives and those of members in their communities..."
Awarded since 1994 by WWSF Women's World Summit Foundation - an international, non-profit, humanitarian NGO, serving the implementation of women’s and children’s rights and the UN development agenda - the Prize ($ 1000 per laureate and $ 3000 for specific African women’s organisations), honors women and women's groups around the world exhibiting exceptional creativity, courage and commitment for the improvement of the quality of life in rural communities (354 prizes awarded so far). The Prize aims to draw international attention to laureates' contributions to sustainable development, household food security and peace, thus generating recognition and support for their projects. While rural women are vital in providing examples of sound practice in their communities, they still do not have full access to tools needed for development, such as education, credit, land rights and participation in decision making. By highlighting and awarding creative development models, innovations and experiences enhancing the quality of rural life, WWSF participates in addressing the eradication of rural poverty, gender mainstreaming and women’s empowerment.
NOMINATIONS MUST INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING ITEMS:
The long-term impact of the Prize depends on the integrity of the nominators and the quality of their nominations. The Prize is an award for successful accomplishments rather than a fund for future projects. The nominee's history (2-3 pages) should demonstrate the creativity, courage and sometimes sacrifice in her efforts at the grass roots to improve life in rural communities. Descriptions should be as specific as possible.
Any of the following elements should be emphasized:
Laureates are selected by an international Jury composed of WWSF Board of Directors; are announced officially in September and celebrated in their countries on 15 October – International Day of Rural Women. WWSF has a commitment to award annually 5-10 creative rural women and women's groups around the world. To read about the laureates, visit our web site www.woman.ch
Prize Nomination Form