Methodist Women in Britain Empowering Women and Changing the World

Methodist Women in Britain Empowering Women and Changing the World

Methodist women in Britain are asking the question: how can wechange the world? Since the launch of Methodist Women in Britain twoyears ago, it has developed as a movement of women seeking toresource and empower women and women's groups worldwide. Two mainfocuses include achieving the targeted eight Millennium Development Goals and Dalit Solidarity.  

In an attempt to help reach the target of the eight UN MillenniumDevelopment Goals, MWiB has  developed materials andresources for eight days of advocacy to change the world that willbe held from 20 - 27 October. The materials provided for each ofthe eight days include stories, images, bible reflections andprayers. The goals promote gender equality, the empowerment of women, t he eradication of poverty and hunger and combating HIV/AIDs, malaria and other diseases.  Theresources have all been written by women with direct experience ofthe issues involved, and are available on the MWiB website. 

Jill Baker, Former President of MWiB, said: "We are not naiveenough to think that the problems of the world can be eradicated ineight days, but we offer this material in the hope that thestories, prayers and images will inspire more and more of us - notonly Methodists, not only women and not only in Britain -  torealise that these goals are not vain dreams, but real targets andthat each one of us can do something towards attaining them. In addition to the eight goal-specific resources, there is apage of general suggestions for holding an event in a local church,circuit or other organisation and so the ripples can continue tospread and can effect change."  

MWiB has also committed to raising £50,000 during the three-yearperiod of 2013-2016 for the Church of North India to use in theirwork supporting Dalits, and particularly for the education of Dalitgirls and in the funding of self-help groups for adultwomen. 

Dalits, who make up approximately 16.6 per cent of the Indianpopulation, were once referred to as 'untouchables'. They havefaced economic, cultural, religious, social exploitation andstigmatization throughout history. Dalit women, in particular, arefurther marginalized and exploited due to poverty, castediscrimination and patriarchal traditions. 

The MWiB Dalit Solidarity Task Group has developed a DalitSolidarity resource pack offering a greater insight for groups andindividuals into the situation of the Dalits in India. It includespersonal stories, prayers and worship, wider information relatingto food issues and discrimination as well as ways in which peoplecan help to make a difference. The Dalit Solidarity resource packis available for the purchase price of £5 from the MWiBAdministrator, details are on their website.

Linda Crossley, President of Methodist Women in Britain, said:"Methodist Women in Britain are striving to bring about justice andtransformation to the lives of those who are most in need aroundthe world. We are focusing our efforts on the needs of the Dalitsbecause they have experienced discrimination and oppression forcenturies; we believe that through advocacy, awareness andsolidarity we can help to bring about change."

Since the launch of Methodist Women in Britain on 1 July 2011,following the merger of the Women's Network in the Methodist Churchand the British Unit of the World Federation of Methodist &Uniting Church Women, MWiB has enabled and empowered women aroundthe world. Their work has helped projects such as the Methodist Women's Training Centre in Kumasi, Ghana and the Matthew Rusike Children's Home, Zimbabwe.  MWiB has alsogranted funding to Social and CommunityAction projects in Britain.