Oxfam International Blogs - Malawi http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/tags/malawi malawi es Oxfam community activists help prevent cholera after Cyclone Idai in Mozambique http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81927 <div class="field field-name-body"><p>In the aftermath of the Idai Cyclone In Mozambique, Oxfam and the Ministry of Health have trained more than 60 community ‘activistas’ in Mozambique to promote public health advice to help stop the spread of cholera.</p> <p><strong>Cholera is easy to treat and prevent</strong></p> <p>“The tragedy is that cholera is actually easy to treat and simple to prevent.” Dorothy Sang, Oxfam’s Humanitarian Advocacy Manager in the devastated city of Beira, said. “But, if it really [takes] hold, it will flare [up and get] out of hand and the response will be that much more costly – both in terms of lives and the resources needed to stop it. We must get clean water and decent sanitation to people and [urgently promote the fact] that simple things like soap can keep cholera at bay.”</p> <p>“We need to bring in far more supplies and fast, particularly to ensure clean water and safe waste management… the people [need to be prioritised and we need] to step up public health promotion in the heart of the affected communities.”</p> <p>She went on to say that while the international response had been good, “the overall appeal remains just 17 percent funded – incredibly low for what the UN has described as ‘one of the worst weather-related disasters in Africa.”</p> <p><img alt=" Micas Mondlane/Oxfam" title=" Micas Mondlane/Oxfam" height="826" width="1240" data-delta="4" typeof="Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/18104lpr-boy-wading-1240.jpg" /></p> <p><em>Jose Arnando wades through the highly contaminated waters inside Tica village. His house can only be reached through the water. Photo: Micas Mondlane/Oxfam</em></p> <p><strong>The Mozambique government is working fast to set up cholera treatement centers</strong></p> <p>Cholera treatment centers are being set up in the city of Beira, Mozambique, where the threat of a cholera epidemic is high.</p> <p>Six people have died from the acute diarrheal disease and the number of cases is soaring, now over 3,000. The government began <a href="https://www.who.int/news-room/feature-stories/detail/combating-cholera-in-mozambique" rel="nofollow">oral vaccinations for 900,000 people</a> on April 3rd.</p> <p>These vaccinations need the support of a massive community outreach campaign to help people learn how they can protect themselves against cholera.</p> <p>With the help of Oxfam supporters like you, 64 ‘activistas’ so far have been trained to reach local communities with vital health information, including what to do if they suspect family or friends are infected. We will also distribute water purification liquids.</p> <p><img alt=" Micas Mondlane/Oxfam" title=" Micas Mondlane/Oxfam" height="826" width="1240" data-delta="2" typeof="Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/18059lpr-felix-volunteer-lin-oxfam-1240.jpg" /></p> <p><em>Janete Luciana, is getting information on hygiene and sanitation to prevent Cholera. Volunteer Felix and supervisor Lin are handing out bottles of chlorine to disinfect contaminated water in Mozambique. Photo: Micas Mondlane/Oxfam</em></p> <p><strong>More community 'activistas' are needed to help prevent cholera now</strong></p> <p>We now need you to help us scale up this programme, and fast. To get more than 1,000 community activistas working ASAP so local communities get the health information they need in time to prevent more deaths. And so we can carry on trucking clean water, building toilet facilities and distributing water containers, buckets and soap.</p> <p><a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/emergencies/cyclone-idai-malawi-mozambique-and-zimbabwe" rel="nofollow"><strong>Donate now to help those affected by Cyclone Idai.</strong></a></p> <p><a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/emergencies/cyclone-idai-malawi-mozambique-and-zimbabwe" rel="nofollow"><strong></strong></a>To prevent a further health emergency, we need the international community to step up funding to organisations now on the ground to rapidly scale up the response to contain and stop the spread of the cholera.</p> <p><strong>The crisis is still unfolding</strong></p> <p>The full scale of the Cyclone Idai crisis is still unfolding. Many thousands of people are still isolated in difficult to reach areas. The scale of destruction means that reaching people is costly and requires fast and flexible funding.</p> <p>Oxfam’s Humanitarian Program Manager, Ulrich Wagner, led an assessment team by boat to Buzi, one of the hard to reach areas prioritized for the vaccination campaign.</p> <p>“What I saw there was shocking, the perfect breeding ground for cholera. Just by looking at the side of some of the buildings you could see the flood waters had come up to way above my head,” he said.</p> <p>“People were cleaning out what was left of their houses or trying to construct new shelters with any debris they could find. Toilets had been destroyed and were overflowing. We must assume all wells are contaminated but people are forced to still collect water from them. I was told that in some areas people were digging holes in the ground just to find a water source.”</p> <p><img alt=" Sergio Zimba" title=" Sergio Zimba" height="930" width="1240" data-delta="1" typeof="Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/116168lpr-standing-water-1240.jpg" /></p> <p><em>Survivors of Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, face water and electricity shortages and are at risk of waterborne diseases carried in contaminated flood water. Photo: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam</em></p> <p><strong>Oxfam is in Mozambique</strong></p> <p>In Mozambique, Oxfam is trucking clean drinking water to more than over 8,000 people living in displacement camps and distributing buckets and soap working as part of a collective of charities and with local partner AJOAGA.</p> <p>A crucial next step in averting health hazards is to build toilets.</p> <p>Last week (3 April), <a href="https://twitter.com/Oxfam/status/1114314776346333184" rel="nofollow">we shipped 38 tonnes of water and sanitation equipment</a> to Beira: the shipment included over a thousand pieces of building material for constructing emergency toilets, over 20 large water containers to collect and store fresh water, 10,000 smaller water containers for people to use to carry and keep water clean and safe, three desludging pumps with generators, and over a hundred tap stands.</p> <p><a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/emergencies/cyclone-idai-malawi-mozambique-and-zimbabwe"><strong>Donate now to Oxfam's flood response</strong></a></p> <p><em><strong>Thank you for your continued support.</strong></em></p> <p><em>Top photo: Julia Pedro (right), a hygiene promotion volunteer for Oxfam. Julia’s family home collapsed and they are living with an aunt now. But still she wants to volunteer because, “these people do not know enough about dangerous diseases like cholera. I want to help them and save their children.” Julia is doing household visit and chlorine distribution in in Praia Nova, a poor area in Beira that has been hit hardest. Credit: Micas Mondlane/Oxfam</em></p> </div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Oxfam community activists help prevent cholera after Cyclone Idai in Mozambique</h2></div> Fri, 05 Apr 2019 14:38:26 +0000 Guest Blogger 81927 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81927#comments Cyclone Idai and floods hit Southern Africa: the reality of climate change http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81914 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>The devastating Cyclone Idai that hit south-eastern Africa may be <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/mar/19/cyclone-idai-worst-weather-disaster-to-hit-southern-hemisphere-mozambique-malawi" rel="nofollow">the worst ever disaster to strike the southern hemisphere</a>, according to the UN. Ever-worsening storms and climate change are destroying people's lives - and the poorest are hit hardest. How can we equip them to cope with a world where climate change means extreme weather events such as Idai happen more often?</strong></p><p>It is 2am and you are fast asleep. Suddenly you hear people shouting and your neighbors are calling for you to wake up and leave the house immediately.</p><p>You grab your four-month old baby, wrap her tight around you, then grab your two daughters not worrying if they are awake or not.</p><p>Unimaginable thunder and the roaring of water keep bombarding your ears.</p><p>The moment you step out of the house, you can hardly see for the thick clouds and heavy rain. You hear an unseen voice shouting at you: “Run, it is flooding!”</p><p>Everyone is in a panic with no sense of no direction and you do not know where to run to. You cannot go back into the house, so the only option you have is climb the nearest tree.</p><p>As you read this blog, you think it could never happen to you.</p><p>But this is exactly happened to 36-year-old Malita Mishoni from Ntowa Village in Mozambique.</p><p><img alt="Malita with Oxfam hygiene kit at Bangula Camp, Malawi. Photo: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam" title="Malita with Oxfam hygiene kit at Bangula Camp, Malawi. Photo: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam" height="826" width="1240" class="media-element file-default" data-delta="1" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/116187lpr-malita-1240.jpg" /></p><p><em>Malita with Oxfam hygiene kit at Bangula Camp, Malawi. Photo: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam</em></p><p>“For a second, I thought the world was ending - but I looked at my three children and said to myself, I need to do something. I climbed the tree near my house and clung to it while holding onto my three children until dawn,” she explains with tears welling in her eyes.</p><p>“I saw the waters rising and getting closer to where we were and I thought we would die.”</p><p><strong>"We ate nothing"</strong></p><p>After five years of working in the field with Oxfam, this is the story that finally brought me to the point of tears. But I strengthened myself because I wanted to give Malita support to finish telling her story.</p><p>I asked Malita what food she and her children had while they were in the tree.</p><p>“We ate nothing and we never felt hungry,” she says. “</p><p>I stayed in the tree with my two daughters and the baby for two days until the water began subsiding and people with canoes came to bargain for our rescue.”</p><p>The canoe-men asked her to pay MK4000 ($5.25USD) to be taken to Malawi side which was safer but she did not have any cash. She pleaded with them and promised to work in their garden once she was in in Malawi.</p><p>They took her and this is how she made it with her children to Bangula Camp in Nsanje district in the southern tip of Malawi.</p><p>The camp is now home to 5,000 displaced children, women and men from both Malawi and Mozambique who fled their homes with the arrival of Cyclone Idai.</p><p>She says, once the waters have subsided, she would like to go back and begin a new life again.</p><p><strong>Oxfam is there</strong></p><p>Today, Malita is among the 1,000 households at the camp that are receiving hygiene kits from Oxfam.</p><p>“We really needed soap here. We lost everything in the flood, but today marks a new beginning for us, thanks to the Oxfam support. I have a baby and two other daughters and these buckets and soap will make it a bit easier to take care of my children.”</p><p>John Makina, Oxfam in Malawi Country Director says “People have been left with nothing. They need help now and in the months and years ahead to rebuild their communities in a way, which equips them for a world where climate change means extreme weather events such as Idai happen more often.</p><p>“Idai is yet another deadly warning of the impact of unchecked climate change unless governments, particularly major emitters, fail to cut emissions fast.”</p><p>Surely the 5000 children, women, men and very old people I walked among at the camp must not be subjected to this ever again. When they have played no role in degrading our environment, why should they continue paying the steepest price?</p><p><a rel="nofollow" href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/emergencies/cyclone-idai-malawi-mozambique-and-zimbabwe"><strong>Donate now to Oxfam's flood response</strong></a></p><p><em>This entry posted on 26 March 2019, by Daud Kayisi, Oxfam Media &amp; Communications Coordinator.</em></p><p><em>Top photo: A family dig for their son who got buried in the mud when Cyclone Idai struck in Chimanimani about 600 kilometers south east of Harare, Zimbabwe, Tuesday, March, 19, 2019. Credit: Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi/AP/REX</em></p><p></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Cyclone Idai and floods hit Southern Africa: the reality of climate change</h2></div> Tue, 26 Mar 2019 17:12:42 +0000 Guest Blogger 81914 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81914#comments "I signed up to save lives" - Personal report from Oxfam's Cyclone Idai response http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81909 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>Stewart Muchapera, Oxfam Media and Communications Lead, gives a personal report from Beira in Mozambique, on our relief efforts after Cyclone Idai devastates southern Africa.</strong></p><p><strong></strong>My alarm clock goes off at 4 am. I had deliberately placed it away from my bed so I would be forced to get up.</p><p><span>For days I had been trying to get on a flight into Beira, the port city in Mozambique where cyclone Idai made landfall, and so I couldn’t afford to miss this one.</span></p><p><span></span><span>As the plane begins its descent into Beira, I get my first glimpse of the damage inflicted by Idai and the floods that preceded it.</span></p><p><span></span><span>I knew Beira had been hit hard – that 90 percent of the city was still under water - yet nothing could have prepared me for what I saw.</span></p><p><span></span><span>Beira resembles a city at war: homes have been razed to the ground as if bombed from the air; some are submerged in water; roofs have been blown away; trees uprooted, and fields and crops flooded.</span></p><p><span><a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/emergencies/cyclone-idai-malawi-mozambique-and-zimbabwe" rel="nofollow"><strong>Donate now to Oxfam's flood response</strong></a></span></p><p><span><img alt="Cyclone Idai hit landfall on the night of 14-15 March causing extensive damage in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Mozambique with homes, agricultural land completely wiped out in some areas. Credit: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam" title="Cyclone Idai hit landfall on the night of 14-15 March causing extensive damage in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Mozambique with homes, agricultural land completely wiped out in some areas. Credit: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam" height="960" width="1280" class="media-element file-default" data-delta="4" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/img-20190312-wa0041.jpg" /></span></p><p><em><span>Cyclone Idai hit landfall on the night of 14-15 March causing extensive damage in Zimbabwe, Malawi and Mozambique with homes, agricultural land completely wiped out in some areas. Credit: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam</span></em></p><p><span></span><span>On arrival the airport is abuzz with activity. It’s the only place in Beira with functional telecommunications so the United Nations and many international aid agencies have made it their base – and this is where I will be living for the coming days.</span></p><p><span></span><span>Much of the building resembles a war room: maps cover the walls and everywhere; men and women are huddled together trying to work out how to get aid out to people in desperate need.</span></p><p><span></span><span>There is the constant noise of helicopters and planes taking off with emergency supplies for areas in the city and beyond that are only accessible by air.</span></p><p><span></span><span>Oxfam too is working a local partner organization, AJOAGO, trying to organize a helicopter to distribute family kits to communities in Buzi, one of the worst hit areas of the city where families are reported to be living on the rooftops of flooded houses.</span></p><p><span></span><span>Each family kit contains blankets, a bucket, mosquito nets, a jerry can, spoons and cloth wrappers. The hope is these kits will help prevent the spread of deadly diseases such as cholera and malaria.</span></p><p><span><img alt="Survivors of Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, face water and electricity shortages and are at risk of waterborne diseases carried in contaminated flood water. Credit: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam" title="Survivors of Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, face water and electricity shortages and are at risk of waterborne diseases carried in contaminated flood water. Credit: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam" height="1125" width="1500" class="media-element file-default" data-delta="1" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/116169lpr-water-and-electricity-shortages-1500.jpg" /></span></p><p><em><span>Survivors of Cyclone Idai in Beira, Mozambique, face water and electricity shortages and are at risk of waterborne diseases carried in contaminated flood water. Credit: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam</span></em></p><p><span></span><span>While we are waiting for the flight, I head for Dondo, about 30 kilometers out of Beira, where a camp has been set up for displaced people. With my notebook and camera, I spend the afternoon listening to inspirational men and women who, despite losing everything, still wear a smile on the weary faces.</span></p><p><span></span><span>“There is nothing we could have done - we were in its path. We lost everything - our homes, blankets and food. We are waiting for the rains to subside so that we can go home and rebuild,” said Jacinta Verisha, a mother of four who lost her home and now living in a tent donated by <a href="https://www.fdfa.be/en/grant-to-oxfam-solidarity-for-coordination-of-cosaca-consortium-in-mozambique-2018" rel="nofollow">COSACA</a>, a consortium of aid agencies including Oxfam, Care and Save the Children.&nbsp;</span></p><p><span></span><span>As I bid farewell to Jacinta l wonder how long she will have to stay in the camp. Will she and her family make it home? Will her kids get back to school? Will they survive the outbreaks of disease such as malaria or cholera that so often strike in the aftermath of major disasters?</span></p><p><span><img alt="The Indian Navy rescue men, women and children stranded by Cyclone Idai in Buzi and surrounding islands, Mozambique. Photo: Tina Kruger/Oxfam" title="The Indian Navy rescue men, women and children stranded by Cyclone Idai in Buzi and surrounding islands, Mozambique. Photo: Tina Kruger/Oxfam" height="872" width="1500" class="media-element file-default" data-delta="2" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/116163-indian-navy-rescue-boats-tina-kruger-1500.jpg" /></span></p><p><em><span>The Indian Navy rescue men, women and children stranded by Cyclone Idai in Buzi and surrounding islands, Mozambique. Photo: Tina Kruger/Oxfam</span></em></p><p><span></span><span>How many more people like Jacinta will I meet? How many more people will have their lives turned upside down as climate change brings more frequent and more destructive weather to our continent?</span></p><p><span></span><span>What I do know is that Oxfam, and our supporters across the globe, will make a huge difference to people like Jacinta, providing emergency assistance such as clean water and shelter to people who desperately need help now and helping people rebuild their communities, and their lives, in the months and years ahead.</span></p><p><span></span><span>I signed up to work at Oxfam to help save lives – being here in Beira is stark reminder of my commitment.</span></p><p><span><img alt="Survivors of Cyclone Idai shelter in abandoned buildings in Mozambique. Photo: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam" title="Survivors of Cyclone Idai shelter in abandoned buildings in Mozambique. Photo: Sergio Zimba/Oxfam" height="984" width="1500" class="media-element file-default" data-delta="3" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/116165lpr-house-contents-sergio-1500.jpg" /></span></p><p><span></span><em>This entry posted on 25 March 2019, by Stewart Muchapera, Oxfam Media and Communications Lead, writing from Beira in Mozambique.</em></p><p><a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/emergencies/cyclone-idai-malawi-mozambique-and-zimbabwe" rel="nofollow"><strong>Donate now to Oxfam's flood response</strong></a></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>&quot;I signed up to save lives&quot; - Personal report from Oxfam&#039;s Cyclone Idai response</h2></div> Mon, 25 Mar 2019 13:17:06 +0000 Guest Blogger 81909 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81909#comments Changing attitudes in Malawi, to end violence against women http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81588 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>Nikki van der Gaag, Oxfam GB’s Director of Women’s Rights, reports from rural Malawi, where Oxfam is working with the First Lady to end gender-based violence and promote gender equality.</strong></p><p>The excitement is palpable. The sun is already hot, but people are gathering in groups to sing and dance. All are in bright colours, but the two that dominate are Oxfam’s purple and black: ‘End Violence against Women and Girls’ robes, and the pale blue of the President’s party.</p><p>We are in Phalombe District, in the south of the country, on the flat plains dominated by Malawi’s 3,000 metre Mount Mulanje. The crowds are gathering in a local school, where a clear area of red earth has been encircled by tents, and, in honour of their visitor, a platform with flowers and a chair.</p><p>They have come on foot and in trucks, old and young, women and men. Many are barefoot, some have hats or handkerchiefs on their heads. Gradually they settle down, standing in the shade or sitting upright, legs outstretched in front of them.</p><h3>Violence is inhuman</h3><p>They are here to see <strong>Malawi's First Lady, Professor Gertrude Mutharika</strong>, who is an Oxfam Ambassador on ending violence against women and girls. She is accompanied by seven other Ambassadors, including Malawi’s first female Chief Justice, Anastasia Msosa; Paramount Chiefs, Gomani and Kawinga; Senior Chief Chikumbu and Senior Chief Kachindamoto (a woman who is a tireless campaigner against child marriage, visiting homes and communities to stop the practice); Skeffa Chimoto, a popular Malawian musician; and <a href="http://faithmussa.com/" rel="nofollow">Faith Mussa</a>, a Malawian gospel singer who performs not only in the villages of his country but on stages around the world.</p><p>The presence of the men as well as the women is evidence of the fact that women’s voices alone, are not enough in this patriarchal society. Faith and Skeffa tell me how part of the ambassador role is to go around villages playing music and speaking about the importance of girls’ education and ending violence. Faith also takes his voice to the churches, where elders also listen.</p><p>‘I came from a woman’, says Skeffa, ‘why should I beat a woman? Violence is inhuman.’</p><h3>Violence against women is increasing</h3><p>Their voices, and the First Lady’s are sorely needed. Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world, <a href="https://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/closing-the-divide-in-malawi-how-to-reduce-inequality-and-increase-prosperity-f-620463" rel="nofollow">where inequality is on the rise</a>. It is also one of the world’s worst places to be a woman – and getting worse rather than better. It went down 20 places in the <a href="https://www.weforum.org/reports/the-global-gender-gap-report-2017" rel="nofollow">2017 Global Gender Gap Report</a>, ranking 101 out of 144 countries.</p><p>The percentage of women who have ever experienced physical violence has increased from 28 per-cent in 2010 to 34 per-cent in the <a href="https://dhsprogram.com/pubs/pdf/FR319/FR319.pdf" rel="nofollow">2015-16 Demographic and Health Survey</a>.</p><p>And In 2014, women’s representation in parliament dropped from 43 to 32 MPs.</p><p>Not only this, but almost <a href="http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2013/child_marriage_20130307/en/" rel="nofollow">50 per cent of girls can expect to be married before they are 18</a>. This is despite the efforts of the government to outlaw the practice, a Gender Equality Act, passed in 2013, and a Gender Ministry and a Women’s Caucus in Parliament.</p><h3>Changing social norms</h3><p>Changing attitudes and behaviors – known as social norms – is therefore key. And this event aims to be part of that change.</p><p>The First Lady’s arrival is heralded more by a sort of indrawn breath from the crowd, rather than the cavalcade that sometimes announces a person of importance. She is wearing an elegant tailored dress made out of the Oxfam material.</p><p>The speeches go on for a couple of hours, interspersed with groups of women and school children performing songs and dancing.</p><h3>Violence, development, poverty</h3><p>Finally the First Lady moves to the microphone. She doesn’t pull her punches, speaking of incest, rape of orphans, violence in the family, and the importance of girls going to school. She says that she agreed to become an Oxfam Ambassador because gender-based violence not only harms women and girls, it holds back the country’s development:</p><p>‘When women and girls are subjected to gender based violence of various forms, they are affected both physically and emotionally, as such, they are unlikely to take part in development activities. This reduces the number of Malawians that could take part in development.’</p><p>The crowd listen in rapt silence. And then, suddenly, the event is over. As the First Lady’s car sweeps down the road out of the school, the stage, banners and tents are already being taken down. People stream away in all directions, some along the road, some through the fields of corn and sunflowers. Many of the school children, girls included, are on bicycles. They are still lively, despite the long day.</p><h3>Signs of change</h3><p>Perhaps the conversations over dinner tonight will begin to open up the kinds of debates between couples, parents and children, elders and the youth, and within communities, that are so sorely needed to change both attitudes and behaviors.</p><p>I hope that the example set by the First Lady and others today will begin to make a difference to some of those grim statistics. One sign of change in the days following the event was the suspending of nine primary school teachers in Phalombe District for allegedly having sexual relations with their pupils.</p><p>If these changes in structures, attitudes and behaviors can be made, the women and girls of this beautiful country will have a different kind of future; one that will benefit all its citizens.</p><p><a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/explore/issues/gender-justice" rel="nofollow"><strong>Read more about our work on ending violence against women and girls</strong></a></p><p><em>This entry posted by Nikki van der Gaag, Oxfam GB’s Director of Women’s Rights, on 4 June 2018.</em><br><br><em>Photo: Malawi's First Lady, Professor Gertrude Mutharika, with fellow Oxfam Ambassadors on ending violence against women and girls at the EVAWG event in Phalombe District, Malawi. Credit: Watipaso Kaliwo/Oxfam</em><br><br></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Changing attitudes in Malawi, to end violence against women</h2></div> Mon, 04 Jun 2018 17:44:57 +0000 Guest Blogger 81588 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/81588#comments The daily struggle to survive hunger is Malawi's 'new normal' http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/54882 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>As Malawi experiences the worst drought it's had for 35 years, exacerbated by El Niño, many are suffering from hunger and starvation. Benjamin Phillips, Oxfam Humanitarian Officer, shares with us his experience on a recent visit to the country.</strong></p> <p>‘If you come back in August you (probably) won’t find us here,’ one man I recently met in drought-stricken southern Malawi told me. What was frightening was that I heard this repeatedly from the many families I met with in other parts of the country, currently ravaged by Southern Africa’s worst drought in 35 years caused by the El Nino weather phenomenon.</p> <p>The reality is grim. Poor harvests for the past two years have left millions of Malawians struggling to meet their food needs, and with an international community that has not woken up to respond. People are already going hungry, forced to skip meals or sell assets in order to buy food. Children are either too hungry to go to school or are forced to drop out to look for work to provide food for their families.</p> <p>Seeing it firsthand made me realize how severe the needs are.</p> <h3>The brink of catastrophe</h3> <p>As I walked through the villages and cultivable land of Balaka district in southern Malawi and one of the worst affected areas, the sense that things are worse than usual was evident. Crops have withered without enough rain water, rivers are dry and people have had to dig three times as deep to find water.</p> <p>Stalks of maize grown at this time of the year are thinner than usual. Little to no rain has dried up the soil and the leaves on certain crops are smaller than they should be.</p> <p>It is the subtle tell-tale signs - albeit different from one farm to the other - that reaffirm one collective fear: people are at the brink of catastrophe.</p> <p><img alt="Farmers describe how first flooding and then drought have destroyed crops. Balaka district, Malawi. Credit: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam" title="Farmers describe how first flooding and then drought have destroyed crops. Balaka district, Malawi. Credit: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam" height="680" width="1240" class="media-element file-default" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/farmers-malawi-field-1240x680.jpg" /></p> <p>Maize, the country’s staple, is usually easy to produce therefore can be grown at a large scale. However, the El Nino weather phenomenon has caused longer dry spells and flooding in some areas, destroying crops and significantly reducing harvests. Climate change is set to make weather like this the new normal for places like Malawi, and maize is one of the most vulnerable crops to drought.  </p> <p>The country’s current maize deficit of over 400,000 tonnes reaffirms how the situation has deteriorated since 2015.</p> <p>In June 2016, the Malawian government announced that 6.5 million people would face food insecurity because of the drought. If we all don’t act together and fast, help will not reach those who desperately need it and we risk losing lives. Action is needed now to ensure that people have access to food, when they need it.</p> <h3>Oxfam is there</h3> <p>In Balaka, Oxfam has provided drought resistant crops like sweet potato vines, to enable affected families to continue cultivation even in dry conditions. 48 year old Rose Usi from Balaka’s Njale village said as she didn’t harvest enough maize this year, ‘the potatoes have come to her family’s rescue’. She is able to not only provide quality food for her family but also sell the surplus and use the money to cover other basic needs.</p> <p>Projects such as these not only improve people’s access to urgent food, but also build their crop production skills particularly with the inevitable climate changes. Any surplus sold means that families have an alternative source of income and still maintain local markets.</p> <p>Ultimately, communities are more prepared for and cope better in future emergencies.</p> <p>But funds needed to provide much needed help have been slow or scarce. Oxfam needs $16 million to provide assistance to 650,000 people in Malawi until mid-2017. To date, we have received only 14% of the funding we require to meet these needs. From April to May 2016, Oxfam provided 203,264 drought affected people with cash assistance in Mulanje, Lilongwe and Kasungu districts.</p> <p>Since markets are still functioning in some areas, cash has been an effective way to support both people and local markets. In June, Oxfam assisted over 29,000 people in Balaka district with sweet potato vines, maize and vegetable seeds and fertilisers. We are currently preparing to support a further 77,000 people with cash transfers to enable them purchase food, and 6,000 people with additional agricultural inputs in Balaka and Mulanje districts.</p> <h3>Hunger is not inevitable</h3> <p>When you see the difficulties that people are going through you want to shout from the rooftops and wake the world to stop this catastrophe from unfolding further.</p> <p>Hunger isn’t inevitable. Lives can be saved and livelihoods restored. But, everyone including international donors, national governments and humanitarian actors must do their fair share before it’s too late.</p> <p><em>This entry was posted by Ben Phillips, Oxfam Humanitarian Officer, on 21 July 2016.</em></p> <p><em>Photos: (top) Rose Usi, Balaka district, Malawi. Credit: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam. (middle) Farmers describe how first flooding and then drought have destroyed crops. Balaka district, Malawi. Credit: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam</em></p> <h3>What you can do</h3> <p><strong>Read our <a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/research/preventable-crisis" rel="nofollow">latest report on El Niño</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Read the blog: <a href="https://blogs.oxfam.org/en/blogs/16-02-02-el-nino-climate-change-all-you-need-know">El Niño and Climate change: All you need to know</a></strong></p> <p><img alt="Rose Usi, Balaka district, Malawi. Credit: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam" title="Rose Usi, Balaka district, Malawi. Credit: Daud Kayisi/Oxfam" height="950" width="1900" class="media-element file-default" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/el-nino-malawi2016-12-final-optim.jpg" /></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>The daily struggle to survive hunger is Malawi&#039;s &#039;new normal&#039;</h2></div> Thu, 21 Jul 2016 12:12:05 +0000 Guest Blogger 54882 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/54882#comments Inequality in Malawi – a Dangerous Divide http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/30307 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><em>This entry posted by John Makina, Country Director, Oxfam in Malawi, on 26 November 2015.</em></p> <p>In 2015, eight million people in Malawi – or 50% of the population - are living in poverty. Yet while poverty may be a familiar issue for discussion in Malawi’s development sphere, Oxfam is today putting the spotlight on a less talked about issue, but one that threatens to severely hinder poverty reduction in the country: Malawi’s increasing inequality.</p> <p>Building on the launch of Oxfam’s global inequality campaign <a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/even-it-up" rel="nofollow">Even It Up </a>over a year ago, Oxfam in Malawi today launches its own national report, ‘<a href="https://www.oxfam.org/en/research/dangerous-divide-state-inequality-malawi" rel="nofollow">A Dangerous Divide</a>’, analysing the state of inequality in the country. The study, authored by Dr. Richard Mussa and Dr. Winford Henderson Masanjala of the University of Malawi, highlights some shocking findings. In just seven years, the gap between the richest 10% of Malawians and the poorest 40% has increased by almost a third.  Malawi’s Gini coefficient, the key measure of inequality, also shows the extent to which robust economic growth is benefiting the rich whilst leaving the poor behind. In a period of impressive growth between 2004 and 2011, the Gini has leapt up from 0.39, on a par with Cameroon, to 0.45, on a par with the Democratic Republic of Congo. And if inequality continues to rise in Malawi as it has in recent years, by 2020 1.5 million more Malawians will be poor, in addition to the eight million living in poverty today.</p> <p><img alt="Inequality in Malawi – a Dangerous Divide" title="Inequality in Malawi – a Dangerous Divide" height="396" width="280" style="float: right;" class="media-element file-default" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/malawi-inequality-report-cover-280.png" /><strong>The new report also examines the extent of inequality</strong> in access to healthcare and education. Health inequalities are stark in Malawi, where the richest are able to access high-quality private clinics that are out of reach for the poor. Primary health facilities in Malawi are free at the point of use, meaning they are not as regressive as in many African countries where fees are charged . However, persistent shortages of medicines and staff mean these facilities often provide a very poor quality service, despite the best efforts of their few heroic health workers.  Moreover, the government intends to scale up paying services in four major public tertiary hospitals, namely Queen Elizabeth, Kamuzu, Zomba and Mzuzu Central Hospitals. Given the huge barrier to use that even the smallest user fees represent to the poorest, and particularly women, any move by the government to scale up fees within the public healthcare system is likely to have a damaging effect on people in poverty, and increase inequality.</p> <p><strong>In education, the government has made significant strides</strong> in recent decades. Primary education has been free in Malawi since 1994, and there has also been a big increase in the provision of community day secondary education. Despite this, the study shows how education qualifications remain unfairly distributed in favour of the better-off. While action by the government has borne fruit in reducing this bias towards the rich, at secondary education level recently increased fees could undo all past hard-won progress.</p> <p><strong>Oxfam’s study also assesses the impact of gender inequality</strong>, in particular highlighting how poor women can be trapped in their situation by a perfect storm of discrimination and economic disadvantage. As Margaret from Chikuse village in Dowa district says:</p> <p><em>"My cousins told me to leave the village I have called home since I was born because my father paid dowry to marry my mother, who came from another village. As per tradition, I and my siblings have no “right” to own any piece of land. When I insisted that I had a right to inherit a piece of land that belonged to my father before he died, my cousins resorted to destroying the crops in my garden as a way of trying to frustrate me...One day they torched my house and I was forced to leave. I strongly feel they did this to me because I am a woman, because my brother still lives in the village.</em></p> <p><em>Since 2011, I have been moving from one place to another trying to find somewhere I can settle and be with my children. Sadly I haven’t found anywhere...I decided to check in at this government rehabilitation centre. I am helpless and hopeless.’’</em></p> <p><strong>The study also shows how gender inequality</strong> can compound the impact of other inequalities. For example, in rural Malawi, the richest boys are 28 times more likely than the poorest girls to complete their secondary education.</p> <p>Finally, the new report shows how political power is unequally distributed in Malawi, and how corruption too is fuelling the growing gap between rich and poor. Grand corruption, where the Malawian state is defrauded of hundreds of millions of kwacha, drives inequality not only because it makes a handful of individuals very rich, but also because the money stolen is money that could have been spent on public services such as health and education serving the majority of Malawians.  This dynamic is further compounded when donors suspend their aid to government because of corruption scandals, necessitating further draconian cutbacks in essential services, which hurt the poorest and increase inequality even further.</p> <p><strong>The message from Oxfam in Malawi’s study is clear:</strong> the state of inequalities across a range of dimensions in Malawi - including consumption, education, health, and wealth - clearly represent a dangerous divide.</p> <p>Moreover, reducing inequality will only happen as a result of deliberate joint policy efforts, which for Oxfam in Malawi must focus on strengthening free at the point of use public services for all, supported by increasing public revenues raised from progressive taxation, and tackling gender inequality.</p> <p><em>This entry posted by John Makina, Country Director, Oxfam in Malawi, on 26 November 2015.</em></p> <p><em>Photo: Bwalia ‘Bottom’ Hospital in Lilongwe, Malawi. Patients wailt for treatment in the pre-labor ward in crowded conditions. Credit: Abbie Trayler-Smith/Oxfam</em></p> <p><strong>Download the report: <a href="https://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/file_attachments/rr-inequality-in-malawi-261115-en.pdf" rel="nofollow">A Dangerous Divide: The State of Inequality in Malawi</a></strong></p> <h3>What you can do now</h3> <p><strong><a href="https://act.oxfam.org/international/even" rel="nofollow">Act now to close the widening economic inequality gap</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Share this graphic</strong></p> <p><a href="https://blogs.oxfam.org/sites/default/files/richest-10-percent-malawi.jpg"><img alt="Graphic: economic inequality in Malawi" title="Graphic: economic inequality in Malawi" height="800" width="1600" class="media-element file-default" typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://l.blogs.oxfam/sites/default/files/richest-10-percent-malawi.jpg" /></a></p> <p> </p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Inequality in Malawi – a Dangerous Divide</h2></div> Thu, 26 Nov 2015 16:00:57 +0000 Guest Blogger 30307 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/30307#comments Un salaire décent pour les cueilleurs de thé, boisson la plus consommée au monde http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/10305 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>L’effondrement tragique d’une usine de confection textile au <a href="http://www.lesechos.fr/entreprises-secteurs/grande-consommation/actu/0202743896847-les-enseignes-textiles-sous-pression-apres-le-drame-de-dacca-563939.php" target="_blank" title="Les enseignes textiles sous pression après le drame de Dacca - Les Echos" rel="nofollow">Bangladesh</a> a douloureusement attiré l’attention sur les mauvaises conditions salariales et de travail endurées par les millions de personnes qui fabriquent nos vêtements ou produisent notre nourriture.</strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/fr/cultivons/policy/comprendre-questions-salariales-industrie-the" target="_blank" title="Comprendre les questions salariales dans l’industrie du thé" rel="nofollow">Un nouveau rapport</a></strong> publié par Oxfam et l’<strong><a href="http://www.ethicalteapartnership.org/" target="_blank" title="Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP)" rel="nofollow">Ethical Tea Partnership</a></strong>, un groupement de 28 fabricants de thé, confirme que la main-d’œuvre à la base de la boisson la plus prisée au monde ne fait pas exception. Mais il apporte aussi une lueur d’espoir : les choses bougent.</p> <p>Incapables d’établir si la main-d’œuvre des plantations de thé reçoit ou non un salaire décent, les entreprises et les ONG ont tenu un dialogue de sourds pendant des années. Pour tenter de clarifier la situation, un groupe d’organisations, dont Oxfam, l’<strong><a href="http://www.ethicalteapartnership.org/" target="_blank" title="Ethical Tea Partnership (ETP)" rel="nofollow">Ethical Tea Partnership</a></strong>, la <strong><a href="http://www.idhsustainabletrade.com/" target="_blank" title="IDH - Sustainable Trade Initiative" rel="nofollow">Sustainable Trade Initiative</a></strong> (IDH), <strong><a href="http://www.unilever.com/" target="_blank" title="Unilever" rel="nofollow">Unilever</a></strong> et les organismes de certification <strong><a href="http://www.rainforest-alliance.org/fr" target="_blank" title="Rainforest Alliance - Français" rel="nofollow">Rainforest Alliance</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.fairtrade.net/" target="_blank" title="Fairtrade International" rel="nofollow">Fairtrade International</a></strong> et <strong><a href="https://www.utzcertified.org/" target="_blank" title="UTZ Certified" rel="nofollow">UTZ Certified</a></strong>, a fait exécuter une évaluation indépendante de la rémunération et des avantages perçus par la main-d’œuvre dans les plantations du Malawi, de l’Indonésie et de l’État indien de l’Assam. </p> <p><strong>Tous les acteurs du secteur se seront sentis mal à l’aise à la lecture des conclusions du rapport.</strong> Au Malawi, bien que conforme aux exigences légales minimales, le montant cumulé du salaire et des avantages des cueilleurs de thé – hommes et femmes – correspond approximativement à la moyenne pour le pays, mais seulement à la moitié environ du seuil de pauvreté de 2 dollars par personne et par jour, établi par la <strong><a href="http://donnees.banquemondiale.org/indicateur/SI.POV.RUHC" target="_blank" title="Ratio de la population pauvre en fonction du seuil de pauvreté national (% de la population rurale) - Banque mondiale" rel="nofollow">Banque mondiale</a></strong>. Dans l’Assam, en Inde, les cueilleurs de thé gagnent à peine plus que le seuil de pauvreté de la Banque mondiale et moins que le salaire indien moyen. Au Java occidental, en Indonésie, les revenus des cueilleurs se situent bien au-dessus du seuil de pauvreté, mais ne représentent que le quart de ce que la population indonésienne gagne en moyenne. </p> <h3>Un traitement injuste</h3> <p><strong>Il ressort de l’étude qu’une série de facteurs profonds et complexes maintiennent les salaires à un niveau bas.</strong> Un des principaux problèmes réside dans le fait que la rémunération est fixée pour l’ensemble du secteur – il n’y a pas de différence de rémunération d’une plantation à l’autre – et qu’elle est fixée au niveau du salaire minimum légal. Or celui-ci est souvent loin de suffire aux besoins de base d’une famille. Sont également en cause l’extrême variabilité de l’offre et de la qualité des avantages en nature, tels que la garde des enfants ou le logement, et le fait que les travailleurs, notamment les femmes qui constituent la majorité de la main-d’œuvre, n’ont guère voix au chapitre dans les négociations salariales. </p> <p>Clairement, les cueilleurs de thé ne sont pas gâtés. Il est aussi évident qu’aucune organisation ne peut, à elle seule, résoudre ces problèmes. Des mesures s’imposent à l’échelle du secteur. </p> <h3>Une action concertée</h3> <p><strong>Heureusement, les résultats de l’étude ont convaincu de l’urgence du problème</strong> tous les membres de la coalition, y compris les fabricants de thé, et ceux-ci s’engagent à y remédier. </p> <p>Pour l’heure, la coalition s’efforce de sensibiliser le secteur et d’associer un plus grand nombre de parties prenantes à cette initiative, y compris les gouvernements, les syndicats, les distributeurs et d’autres fabricants de thé. Elle met en outre sur pied plusieurs projets nationaux, au Malawi d’abord, visant à lutter contre les bas salaires et, plus généralement, la pauvreté dans les communautés productrices de thé et à inspirer le changement dans le reste du monde. </p> <h3>Des cueilleurs de thé aux consommateurs</h3> <p><strong>Il convient également de rassurer les personnes qui achètent des produits certifiés</strong> : les organismes de certification se sont engagés à améliorer leurs critères relatifs à la main-d’œuvre salariée et à exiger que les plantations augmentent progressivement les rémunérations jusqu’à atteindre le niveau d’un salaire décent. </p> <p><strong>C’est un bon début, mais il faut aller plus loin.</strong> Pour que les travailleuses et travailleurs puissent recevoir un salaire décent, d’autres facteurs ne relevant pas du champ de l’étude doivent également être revus, notamment le prix auquel les fabricants de thé, les distributeurs et, en fin de compte, les consommateurs achètent le thé, ainsi que la répartition de ce prix dans l’ensemble de la chaîne de valorisation.</p> <p><strong>Nous ne pouvons pas résoudre ce problème du jour au lendemain.</strong> Mais nous travaillons sur la question depuis quinze ans et il s’agit là de notre meilleure chance de réellement améliorer les conditions de vie de centaines de milliers de cueilleurs de thé. J’espère que, dans deux ou trois ans, les femmes employées dans les plantations de thé, à travers le monde, commenceront à voir une réelle différence. </p> <p><em>Photos : Abbie Trayler-Smith</em></p> <h3>En savoir plus</h3> <p><strong>Téléchargez le rapport </strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/fr/cultivons/policy/comprendre-questions-salariales-industrie-the" target="_blank" title="Comprendre les questions salariales dans l’industrie du thé - Projet multipartite mené par Oxfam et Ethical Tea Partnership dans le cadre du programme d’amélioration de la situation du thé de l’IDH" rel="nofollow">Comprendre les questions salariales dans l’industrie du thé</a></p> <p><strong>Découvrez <a href="http://www.behindthebrands.org/fr" target="_blank" title="La face cachée des marques" rel="nofollow">la face cachée des marques</a></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Un salaire décent pour les cueilleurs de thé, boisson la plus consommée au monde</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_en first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-02-behind-world-favorite-brew-living-wage-tea-pickers" title="Behind the world’s favorite brew: a living wage for tea pickers" class="translation-link" xml:lang="en">English</a></li> <li class="translation_es last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-05-02-detras-infusion-favorita-del-mundo-un-salario-digno-para-los-recolectores-de-te" title="Té con sabor amargo. La lucha por un salario digno para los recolectores y recolectoras." class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> </ul> Fri, 03 May 2013 08:44:28 +0000 Rachel Wilshaw 10305 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/10305#comments Behind the world’s favorite brew: a living wage for tea pickers http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/10303 <div class="field field-name-body"><p><strong>The tragic collapse of a garment factory in <a href="http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22296645" target="_blank" title="Bangladesh textile workers' deaths 'avoidable' (By Emily Young, BBC News)" rel="nofollow">Bangladesh</a> has put a spotlight on the poor pay and working conditions endured by millions of people who make our clothes or grow our food.</strong></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/grow/policy/understanding-wage-issues-tea-industry" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">A new report launched</a></strong> today by Oxfam and the <strong><a href="http://www.ethicalteapartnership.org/" target="_blank" title="Ethical Tea Partnership's website " rel="nofollow">Ethical Tea Partnership</a></strong> (a group of 28 tea companies) shows workers behind the world’s favorite brew are no exception but it also gives us real reason to hope that things are about to change.</p> <p>For years, companies and non-governmental organizations (NGO) have been talking past each other; unable to agree whether workers on tea estates are paid a living wage. To try get a clear picture a group of organizations including Oxfam, the <strong><a href="http://www.ethicalteapartnership.org/" target="_blank" title="Ethical Tea Partnership's website " rel="nofollow">Ethical Tea Partnership</a></strong>, the <strong><a href="http://www.idhsustainabletrade.com/" target="_blank" title="IDH - The Sustainable Trade Initiative" rel="nofollow">Sustainable Trade Initiative</a></strong> (IDH), <strong><a href="http://www.unilever.com/" target="_blank" title="Unilever's corporate website" rel="nofollow">Unilever</a></strong>, and the certification organizations <strong><a href="http://www.rainforest-alliance.org.uk/" target="_blank" title="Rainforest alliance's website" rel="nofollow">Rainforest Alliance</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.fairtrade.net/" target="_blank" title="Fairtrade international's website" rel="nofollow">Fairtrade International</a></strong> and <strong><a href="https://www.utzcertified.org/" target="_blank" title="UTZ Certified's website" rel="nofollow">UTZ Certified</a></strong>, commissioned an independent assessment of workers’ pay and benefits on plantations in Malawi, Indonesia and Assam in India. </p> <p><strong>The findings made uncomfortable reading for everyone involved.</strong> The report found that despite meeting legal minimum wage requirements the combined value of tea pickers’ pay and benefits in Malawi is around average for the country but only about half the <strong><a href="http://data.worldbank.org/topic/poverty" target="_blank" title="World Bank - Poverty" rel="nofollow">World Bank’s poverty line</a></strong> income of $2 per person per day. In Assam, India, tea pickers earn just above the World Bank poverty line and under the average Indian wage. In West Java, Indonesia, pickers’ incomes are well above the poverty line but only a quarter of what the average Indonesian earns. </p> <h3>A raw deal</h3> <p><strong>Researchers found a number of deep rooted and complex factors keeping wages low.</strong>  A key problem is that pay is set for the whole sector - there is no difference in pay from one plantation to the next - and that it is pegged to the legal minimum wage which is often well below the level needed for meet a family’s basic needs. Other issues include the huge variation in the quality and take up of ‘in-kind’ benefits such as childcare or housing and the fact that workers, particularly women who make up the majority of the workforce, have little say in negotiations over pay.  </p> <p>It was clear that tea pickers are getting a raw deal. It was equally clear that no one organization can solve these problems alone. Action is needed across the industry.</p> <h3>Concerted action</h3> <p><strong>The good news is that, after seeing the results of the research</strong>, all members of the coalition - including the tea companies - now recognize the urgency of the problem and are committed to tackle problem. </p> <p>The coalition is now working to raise awareness within the industry and to get more stakeholders involved in tackling the issue including governments, trade unions, retailers and other tea companies. Starting in Malawi, it is also developing a number of national projects to tackle low wages and broader poverty issues for tea communities and inform change across the globe.  </p> <h3>From tea pickers to consumers</h3> <p><strong>Consumers of certified products can also be reassured</strong> that certification organizations have committed to improve the certification process for waged workers so that it requires plantations to gradually increase workers’ wages to the level of a living wage.  </p> <p><strong>This is a great start but it can't end there.</strong> Other factors, which fall outside the scope of this research, must also be tackled if workers are to receive a living wage. This includes the price that retailers, tea companies and ultimately consumers pay for their tea and how it is distributed along the value chain.   </p> <p><strong>This isn’t a problem we can fix overnight.</strong> But in 15 years of working on these issues it is the best chance we have had to make a real difference to the lives of hundreds of thousands of tea pickers. In two or three years from now I hope women working on tea plantations around the globe will start to experience real change.</p> <p><em>Photos: Abbie Trayler-Smith</em></p> <h3>Related links</h3> <p><strong>Download the report: <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/grow/policy/understanding-wage-issues-tea-industry" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Understanding Wage Issues in the Tea Industry</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Check out what's <a href="http://www.behindthebrands.org" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">behind the brands</a></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Behind the world’s favorite brew: a living wage for tea pickers</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_fr first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/fr/blogs/13-05-03-salaire-decent-cueilleur-the-boisson-plus-consommee-monde" title="Un salaire décent pour les cueilleurs de thé, boisson la plus consommée au monde" class="translation-link" xml:lang="fr">Français</a></li> <li class="translation_es last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-05-02-detras-infusion-favorita-del-mundo-un-salario-digno-para-los-recolectores-de-te" title="Té con sabor amargo. La lucha por un salario digno para los recolectores y recolectoras." class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> </ul> Thu, 02 May 2013 23:00:00 +0000 Rachel Wilshaw 10303 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/10303#comments Té con sabor amargo. La lucha por un salario digno para los recolectores y recolectoras. http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-05-02-detras-infusion-favorita-del-mundo-un-salario-digno-para-los-recolectores-de-te <div class="field field-name-body"><p>El trágico derrumbe de una fábrica textil en <a href="http://internacional.elpais.com/internacional/2013/04/25/actualidad/1366907042_936828.html" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Bangladesh</a> ha puesto en el ojo de mira las deplorables condiciones laborales y salariales de los millones de personas que fabrican nuestra ropa o cultivan los alimentos que comemos. </p> <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/es/crece/policy/comprender-salarios-industria-te" rel="nofollow"><strong>Un nuevo informe</strong> </a>publicado hoy por Oxfam y <strong><a href="http://www.ethicalteapartnership.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Ethical Tea Partnership</a></strong> (coalición formada por 28 empresas de la industria del té) muestra como los trabajadores y trabajadoras que producen la infusión predilecta del mundo no son una excepción. A pesar de esto, el informe también nos da motivos para esperar que las cosas cambien y pronto. Durante años las empresas y las organizaciones no gubernamentales (ONG) han debatido sin escucharse las unas a las otras, incapaces de ponerse de acuerdo sobre si los trabajadores y trabajadoras de las plantaciones de té reciben un salario digno. Para intentar obtener una visión más clara de su situación, un grupo de organizaciones –entre ellas Oxfam, Ethical Tea Partnership, <strong><a href="http://www.idhsustainabletrade.com/" rel="nofollow">Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH)</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.unilever.com/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Unilever</a></strong> y los organismos de certificación <strong><a href="http://www.rainforest-alliance.org.uk/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Rainforest Alliance</a></strong>, <strong><a href="http://www.fairtrade.net/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Fairtrade International</a></strong> y <strong><a href="https://www.utzcertified.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">UTZ Certified</a></strong>– han realizado un estudio independiente sobre los salarios y retribuciones de los trabajadores y trabajadoras de las plantaciones de té de Malawi, Indonesia y Assam (India). <p><strong>Las conclusiones extraídas del estudio ofrecen una visión incómoda para todos</strong>. El informe concluye que, a pesar de que los salarios se ajustan al mínimo legal establecido, el valor combinado de las retribuciones y prestaciones que reciben los recolectores de té en Malawi coincide con la media salarial del país pero apenas supera la mitad del “umbral de pobreza” fijado por el <strong><a href="http://www.bancomundial.org/" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Banco Mundial</a></strong> en 2 dólares por persona y día. En Assam (India), el salario de las personas que recolectan té es algo superior al valor fijado por el Banco Mundial pero está por debajo de la media del país. En Java Occidental (Indonesia), los salarios de los recolectores de té están muy por encima del umbral de la pobreza pero suponen tan sólo un cuarto del salario medio indonesio. </p> <h3>Una injusticia</h3> <p><strong>En el análisis se han identificado una serie de factores muy enraizados y complejos que mantienen congelados los bajos salarios</strong>. Uno de los principales problemas detectados es que el salario, fijado para todo el sector en su conjunto (sin diferencias de una plantación a otra), se ajusta al mínimo legal pero, a menudo, es inferior al necesario para cubrir las necesidades básicas de las familias. Otro de los problemas identificados es la gran variación en la calidad y aceptación de las prestaciones en especie (como el cuidado infantil o la vivienda), así como el hecho de que la opinión de los trabajadores, especialmente de las mujeres –quienes conforman la mayor parte de la mano de obra–, apenas es tenida en cuenta durante las negociaciones del salario.  </p> <p>Además de denunciar el injusto salario que los recolectores y recolectoras de té reciben, el informe muestra claramente que <strong>ninguna organización puede resolver estos problemas por sí sola</strong>. <strong>Es necesario que toda la industria en su conjunto emprenda acciones.</strong></p> <h3>Una acción conjunta</h3> <p>Las buenas noticias son que, tras analizar los resultados obtenidos, todos los miembros de la coalición –incluidas las empresas de té– reconocen la gravedad del problema y se han comprometido a abordarlo. </p> <p>Así, la coalición trabaja ahora para sensibilizar a la industria e involucrar a otros actores, entre ellos gobiernos, sindicatos, minoristas y otras empresas, para hacer frente a esta cuestión. Además, por ejemplo en Malawi, se están comenzando a desarrollar una serie de proyectos en el ámbito nacional para combatir los bajos salarios así como otras cuestiones más amplias relacionadas con la pobreza que afecta a las comunidades productoras de té y promover el cambio en todo el mundo.  </p> <h3>De los recolectores de té a los consumidores</h3> <p><strong>Los organismos de certificación también se han comprometido a mejorar sus procesos</strong> para evaluar los salarios de los trabajadores y trabajadoras y que, así, las plantaciones incrementen sus retribuciones hasta alcanzar un salario digno. </p> <p><strong>Es un gran comienzo pero los esfuerzos no pueden terminar aquí.</strong> También se deben abordar otros factores, fuera del alcance de este estudio, si se quiere lograr que los trabajadores reciban un salario digno,  por ejemplo, el precio que los minoristas, las empresas de té y, en última instancia, los consumidores pagan por el té y cómo este se repercute a lo largo de la cadena de suministro.   </p> <p>Este no es un problema que se pueda solucionar de la noche a la mañana.  Pero, tras 15 años trabajando en estas cuestiones, es nuestra mejor opción si queremos lograr marcar una diferencia en las vidas de los cientos de miles de personas que recolectan té. Espero que dentro de dos o tres años las mujeres que trabajan en las plantaciones de té de todo el mundo puedan apreciar un cambio real. </p> <p><em>Photos: Abbie Trayler-Smith</em></p> <h3>Más información</h3> <p><strong>Lee el informe: <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/es/crece/policy/comprender-salarios-industria-te" rel="nofollow">Comprender los salarios en la industria del té.</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Conoce nuestra campaña <a href="http://www.behindthebrands.org/es" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">Tras la Marca</a></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Té con sabor amargo. La lucha por un salario digno para los recolectores y recolectoras.</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_en first"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/en/blogs/13-05-02-behind-world-favorite-brew-living-wage-tea-pickers" title="Behind the world’s favorite brew: a living wage for tea pickers" class="translation-link" xml:lang="en">English</a></li> <li class="translation_fr last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/fr/blogs/13-05-03-salaire-decent-cueilleur-the-boisson-plus-consommee-monde" title="Un salaire décent pour les cueilleurs de thé, boisson la plus consommée au monde" class="translation-link" xml:lang="fr">Français</a></li> </ul> Thu, 02 May 2013 15:23:36 +0000 Rachel Wilshaw 10306 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blogs/13-05-02-detras-infusion-favorita-del-mundo-un-salario-digno-para-los-recolectores-de-te#comments Dear African leaders: A little less conversation, a little more action please! http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/9188 <div class="field field-name-body"><p>Earlier this week, leaders of over 50 African countries packed their bags and headed home from the <strong><a href="http://www.africa-union.org/root/au/index/index.htm" rel="nofollow">African Union</a></strong> (AU) Summit in Uganda. So after months of planning for the event, I can take a break and reflect back on what happened at the meeting!</p> <p>This year, the AU Summit focused on maternal and child health, two of the <a href="http://www.mdgmonitor.org/" rel="nofollow"><strong>Millennium Development Goals</strong></a> that are furthest of track. It’s a scandal that during the three days of the meeting, 2,000 women and 37,000 children will have died in Africa, mostly from preventable causes. This Summit was a key opportunity for African leaders to commit to doing something about it. </p> <p>Oxfam joined forces with a range of partners including <a href="http://www.fairplayforafrica.org/" rel="nofollow"><strong>Fair Play for Africa</strong></a> and <a href="http://www.safaids.net/" rel="nofollow"><strong>SAfAIDS</strong></a>, to pressure governments in the weeks leading up to the meeting. Alongside the usual rallies, NGO forums and lobby meetings, Oxfam also organized a <a href="http://www.oxfamblogs.org/eastafrica/?p=323" rel="nofollow"><strong>mock debate</strong></a>, the first stunt of its kind at the AU Summit, where actors used puppets and masks to play the role of Presidents in Africa to a lively audience and the media. </p> <p>On Sunday, musicians from across the continent performed an <a href="http://www.oxfamblogs.org/eastafrica/?p=309" rel="nofollow"><strong>all-day concert</strong></a> to demand ‘health care for all’. Legendary South African star <a href="http://www.princessofafrica.co.za/" rel="nofollow"><strong>Yvonne Chaka Chaka</strong></a> – the Princess of Africa – headlined the event and ended with a clear message to African leaders: “This continent is for all of us who live in it, not just you.” </p> <p><strong>So what did African governments agree this week?</strong></p> <ul><li>Leaders have re-committed to spending 15% of their government's budget on health – the so-called <a href="http://www.un.org/ga/aids/pdf/abuja_declaration.pdf" rel="nofollow"><strong>Abuja target</strong></a> was first promised nine years ago but only <a href="http://www.ansa-africa.net/uploads/documents/publications/Equinet_Abuja_2008.pdf" rel="nofollow"><strong>a few countries have reached it</strong></a>. </li> <li>They pledged to increase the number of community health workers in their countries and to make health care free for mothers and children. </li> <li>And they’ve committed to setting up an AU task force on maternal and child health that will track progress on meeting targets.</li> </ul><p>These are fine words, but they will be meaningless if they are not backed by concrete actions and funding for health care in African countries. If we are really going to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, we must stop talking and start acting.</p> <p>It’s been a privilege to see the impact that our campaigning has achieved; many of the recommendations proposed by our coalition have been adopted by African leaders. But our biggest challenge is yet to come – to hold our Presidents truly accountable for their promises this week.</p> <h3>Act now</h3> <p><strong>Join our demand that world leaders keep their promises</strong><strong>: <a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/health-education/pledge" rel="nofollow">Sign the </a></strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/health-education/pledge" rel="nofollow"><strong>Health &amp; Education For All Pledge</strong></a></p> <p><strong><a href="http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/health-education" rel="nofollow">Read more about the campaign</a></strong></p></div><div class="field field-name-title"><h2>Dear African leaders: A little less conversation, a little more action please!</h2></div><ul class="links inline"><li class="translation_es first last"><a href="http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/blog/10-07-29-queridos-lideres-africanos-hechos-no-palabras" title="Queridos líderes africanos: ¡Más hechos y no tantas palabras!" class="translation-link" xml:lang="es">Español</a></li> </ul> Thu, 29 Jul 2010 11:26:46 +0000 Brenda Asiko 9188 at http://l.blogs.oxfam http://l.blogs.oxfam/es/node/9188#comments