A Place that Empowers…
Over 80% of the displaced population within North Darfur IDP camps are women and children. They have suffered displacement, trauma, and loss of family members. But Darfur’s women are strong, innovative, and natural leaders. At DPDO’s Women’s Centers, they are learning to reclaim their roles as leaders and peacemakers.
Skills Training is currently offered in of solar cooking and first aid. DPDO plans to initiative midwife training in 2011. Other areas of training, as requested by the women, will be introduced as funding becomes available.
Solar Cooker Training
Because of increased desertification and rapid population shifts, finding firewood around Darfur IDP camps is increasingly difficult. Women have a tough choice: purchase expensive wood in the market, or venture far from the camp in search of it. Leaving the camp puts women at risk of attack or rape. At the Women’s Centers, DPDO has introduced a simple, inexpensive solution to this problem: the solar cooker.
Solar cookers are portable, homemade ovens that channel the sun’s heat to cook food. They are constructed by covering a cardboard frame with aluminum foil to provide a reflective surface around a pot of food. The pot is wrapped with a plastic bag to trap heat. It cooks all the staples of the Sudanese diet in as little as one to two hours. For more information on solar cookers, click here.
DPDO holds training workshops at the Kassab and Abu Shouk Centers to teach women to construct and use solar cookers. In July 2010, US Special Envoy Scott Gration attended a solar cooker training at Abu Shouk. His son Jonathan raised money to sponsor the training. General Gration presented each women with her solar cooker and supplies during the workshop graduation ceremony.
First Aid Training
Darfur’s IDP camps are isolated and vital medical services often cannot reach those who need them. There are no pharmacies where one can buy bandages or aspirin. Even small wounds can get infected and become very dangerous.
At DPDO’s Women’s Centers, first aid trainers prepare women to respond to simple and more serious maladies and injuries. DPDO provides trainers from the Sudanese Red Crescent and first aid kits.