Promoting Women’s Economic Rights in Cameroon (WERC Project)
“Reducing women’s domestic unpaid work in Cameroon”
May 24 2022, 03:00 pm (Cameroon time) zoom platform (Register Now)
In Cameroon, 39% of the national population lives below the poverty line and this rate rises to 51.5% for women (OCHA, 2019). Among these women, 79.2% are underemployed; more than 71.6% of them work in the informal agricultural sector. This situation persists mainly because of the vulnerability of women’s jobs, but even more so because of the pervasiveness of their unpaid work. Women have free control over the domestic economy (household utensils, management of daily food rations, water and household hygiene) and these domestic tasks account for more than 80 percent of total hours spent on unpaid work. In fact, women spend on average 8.2 hours more per week than men on unpaid domestic work and remain mostly excluded from the control of strategic family assets (land, livestock, money, children’s education, access to health care, etc.) and therefore have no decision-making power over these aspects. This unpaid workload related to reproductive work, combined with the fact that women have extremely limited access to and control over resources, partly explains why the female population is more affected by a severe lack of access to income-generating activities and by poverty. This situation is now particularly acute in the crisis areas of the Northwest and Southwest, where increased morbidity requires increased care and where daily tasks such as collecting water, firewood and food often become more difficult. Despite the proliferation of labor-saving household technologies and the changing family landscape in many economies, traditional gender imbalances in unpaid work remain a problem in Cameroon. It is in this context that the Nkafu Policy Institute, a think tank of the Denis and Lenora Foretia Foundation, is organizing a roundtable discussion on Reducing Women’s Unpaid and Domestic Work in Cameroon.
The main objective of this panel is to discuss ways to lessen unpaid domestic work of women in Cameroon in order to accelerate progress in women’s economic empowerment in the country.
Specifically, it is to:
- Identify and assess women’s unpaid workloads in Cameroon;
- Analyze existing policies in Cameroon put in place to promote women’s economic empowerment and their possible shortcomings in terms of women’s economic freedom;
- Discuss mechanisms that could contribute to the reduction of women’s unpaid domestic work in Cameroon;
- Propose policies that will reduce women’s unpaid domestic work in Cameroon.
- Target audience
This event is open to policy makers, women-led organizations, women leaders, youth leaders, housewives and the general public.