The African Energy and Mining Management Initiative (AEMI) recognises the great role of women engaged in the extractive industries in the achievement of socio-economic development. AEMI, however, acknowledges that the women do not achieve their full economic potential neither do they see substantial social and economic growth and development. This is attributed to gender-related vulnerabilities and social issues. Women in Energy and Mining Empowerment Programme (WEM) is an initiative of the AEMI which seeks to address the peculiar problems faced by women in the extractive industries especially those engaged in Artisanal and small-scale mining activities.
Our AEMI field work studies and activities have brought to light the various challenges faced by women in the extractive industry including: financial constraints, occupational health and safety hazards, lack of protective gear and wear, a largely unregulated ASM sector among others. In this regard, WEM is premised on the need to improve the lives of the women through the provision of practical and tailor-made solutions to the challenges faced thereby leading to their empowerment for the achievement of sustainable development. The WEM project gives life to the Sustainable Development Goals of 2015 (SDGs) by advocating for and promoting numerous Goals like eradication of poverty under Goal 1; gender equality under Goal 5; economic development and decent work under Goal 8 and healthy living under Goal 3. This is achieved through measures such as consultative studies; field work studies; provision of protective gears to female miners; community outreaches; multi-stakeholder engagement; collaboration with other NGOs and entities; publications of reports among others.
‘An environment with visible improvement in the quality and level of life and living manifested in the capability of women in the extractive industries to enjoy social, physical and economic development.’
- To uplift the economic status of women engaged in the energy and mining industries to enhance poverty eradication.
- To improve the health and safety of the women in extractive industries.
- To provide safety and protective gears especially to women in artisanal and small-scale mining (ASM)
- To lay ground for women and girls to participate and gain from the economic, political, cultural and social lives of their communities.
- To advocate for policy measures in support of gender equality in all aspects of social, political and economic spheres.