Women empowerment through AAB cooperation: testimony of Speciose Gakecuru

Friday, December 4, 2015 - 16:38

45 years old, married and mother of 6 children. She is living at colline Bugenyuzi, Bugenyuzi commune. Sha was a primary school teacher and is currently the administrator of Bugenyuzi commune.

Before the project, there were many small associations, not organized without specific objectives. No association was dealing with women rights issues while in our community, women are more vulnerable and very poor.

Thanks to the project support, those associations have been organized and got many capacity building on various topics like gender, power relations between men and women, leadership, women in politics, fundraising, networking, management of “caisses de solidarite d’epargne et de credit”.

Currently, associations are structured and organized in strong network and their members have been empowered economically, politically and socially.

Mrs Speciose Gakecuru is going what has changed in her life.


"I am a primary school teacher. As my salary is low and does not cover all the family needs, I’m also member of women farmer’s associations. We went together to increase our revenue but also defend our rights which are always violated. Before the project, I was not aware of my rights; no voice in my family, my husband was the only one to take decision. Even if I’m educated, I was totally ignorant. The only place I had a voice is in my classroom.

"Publics issues even there ware for women, I thought that it was not a matter for me, I was not interested.

"With the project, I got the capacity building, I got sensitization which opened my mind and my eyes and I and others women, we began to claim our rights enjoy them especially the political one.

"Meanwhile, in 2015, there were elections in Burundi and I gave my candidate as member of communal councilors’. In June 2015, I was elected a counselor. We were 15, 10 men and 5 women. After that, it was the turn to elected among the 15 counselors the one to be at the head of the commune, the administrator. We did our campaign by giving our project, our vision for the commune, and at my great surprise, I was elected Bugenyuzi communal administrator. Now I understand that everything begin as a dream and one day it becomes a reality.

"I am very confident and engaged to develop the commune. Every development project will take in consideration the women rights and will ensure that women have power.

"For all this, I thank Actionaid for their activities on empowering women."