The Sunday News
Rumbidzayi Zinyuke, Manicaland Bureau
FIRST Lady Auxillia Mnangagwa yesterday launched the Angel of Hope Foundation Manicaland chapter, as the organisation spreads its wings countrywide to uplift the lives of disadvantaged members of society.
The First Lady was represented by Defence and War Veterans Affairs Minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri. The event coincided with the launch of the Girls of Substance Movement, an initiative by Crossroads Africa Trust that seeks to groom young girls into responsible women.
In a speech read on her behalf by Minister Muchinguri-Kashiri, the First Lady underscored the need for women to observe moral values.
“We are here to join in a movement of behavioural transformation needed to root out moral decay among young women and to push forward a deliberate agenda of moral rearmament for sustainable development: No to drugs, no to student prostitution, no to social and cultural disillusionment, no to sexual abuse and harassment by young and old men who think women were created to satisfy their physical and emotional needs,” she said.
The First Lady said the girl of today determines the woman and mother of tomorrow.
“Let it be known to everyone that we are here to support these girls; for in them are tomorrow’s leaders, wives and mothers,” she said.
“They are the window of hope, every nation relies on its youths for its future. If we get it wrong with these girls, if we fail to inculcate substance and hope in them today, how can they grow into responsible adulthood and women of virtue,?” she said.
Speaking at the same event Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said the fight for women’s rights was anchored on development.
“Women of this country, when they fight for what is rightfully theirs, they are not asking for charity. It is not just a human rights issue, it is a development issue. We need to move together,” she said.
Minister of State for Manicaland Provincial Affairs Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba said the launch of the two programmes was good for the province as it would help change the behaviour of young girls and grow them into responsible adults.
“These Manicaland girls, from various selected schools, are members of the Girls of Substance Movement, they are here today (yesterday) to give you an idea of what the movement is all about, but more importantly, to hear us, women of substance, to hear us speak to them about their lives, struggles and achievements,” she said.
“First Lady, your Angel of Hope Foundation shares the same vision with these young girls’ movement to create school girls who will soon grow into women of substance . . . women who will not allow anything and anybody to stand in their way in national development.”