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Access Bank Commemorates International Widows Day


For many women around the world, the devastating loss of a partner is magnified by a long-term fight for their basic rights and dignity. Despite the fact that there are more than 258 million widows around the world, widows have historically been left unseen, unsupported, and unmeasured in our societies.
Today, as armed conflicts, displacement and migration, and the COVID-19 pandemic leave tens of thousands of women newly widowed and many others whose partners are missing or disappeared, the unique experiences and needs of widows must be brought to the forefront, with their voices leading the way.
The United Nations observes 23 June as International Widows Day since 2011, to draw attention to the voices and experiences of widows and to galvanize the unique support that they need.
Now more than ever, this day is an opportunity for action towards achieving full rights and recognition for widows. This includes providing them with information on access to a fair share of their inheritance, land and productive resources; pensions and social protection that are not based on marital status alone; decent work and equal pay; and education and training opportunities. Empowering widows to support themselves and their families also means addressing social stigmas that create exclusion, and discriminatory or harmful practices.
As one of Africa’s largest banks, Access Bank Plc. is doing its best to drive economic growth and prosperity within the communities in which it serves. In partnership with Xploits Consulting Limited, the Bank implemented a one-day Vocational Education Training (VET) Program in Bwari Area Council of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja in commemoration of the 2021 United Nation’s International Widows Day.
The program was aimed at equipping widows with easy-to-learn marketable vocational skills to enhance their income generation capability. Fifty-three widows directly benefitted from this vocational training on make-up artistry, bead, soap and wig making. Trainees were also given starter packs to facilitate the training.
In line with the Bank’s continuous support for women empowerment, the Bank also partnered PDI to organize a relief drive for vulnerable widows in Isolo, Lagos State amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Aimed at accelerating the living and mental condition of the vulnerable widows, raw food items, hygiene materials and Information, Communication and Education (IEC) materials on COVID-19 prevention, control and treatment were distributed through this program.