Everywhere, in every way
We are glad to showcase this report by a Mexican participant in a distance learning activity.
My name is Imelda Jiménez García. I'm from Mexico and I work for the Vanguardia Obrera workers’ federation, which is a member of the Revolutionary Confederation of Workers and Peasants (CROC).
I took part in the "Online Trade Union Training in Gender and Decent Work" run by the Programme for Workers' Activities of the International Training Centre of the ILO.
When they told me that I had been enrolled for that course, I felt a little apprehensive, because I had never had any experience like it. My teacher training and other studies had been in classrooms, with teachers always there.
The first few days served to get me used to this way of working, with the help of my tutors, who were excellent leaders as well as specialists in the topics we discussed.
Dealing with the issues of Unit 1 was enough for me to get to grips with their study. I read the valuable material that they had given me, analysed it and compared it with how some of the companies of the union to which I belong, where most staff are women, are organized. I realized that we have a lot to do to achieve actual gender equality.
As we went on to the other units, my interest and my desire to investigate further grew and grew. I wanted to know how the situation of Mexican working women compared to that of women from other Latin American countries. I listened carefully to the views of my colleagues and the wonderful presentations by the tutors, which encouraged me to reflect. I drew my conclusions and wrote in my notebook, “I will apply this to my co-workers, because they need it and because they deserve it”.
This course has led to some very interesting experiences for me. It allowed me to participate knowledgeably in the 1st World Conference on Women, which was held in Brussels, Belgium. At a trade union summit on reconstruction and development in Haiti, which was held in the Dominican Republic, I was bold enough to produce a paper, present it and defend it. In it, I highlighted the value of Haitian women within the family and within society, and for the country’s reconstruction and development.
Now, I do not get discouraged. I shall continue to gather grains of sand here and there, knowing that one day they will build strong castles.