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Women empowerment takes center stage at local company

Female staff at Del Monte fruit processing company were celebrated in an effort to empower women in line with the International Women’s month celebrations.

The company paid tribute to the women and praised them for being diligent workers that were crucial to the growth of the company and economy of the region and nation as a whole.

Speaking at the celebrations, the company Managing Director Mr Stergios Gkaliamoutsas said significant achievements had been made in terms of female empowerment in the workplace.

“Currently, 45 percent of our 7000 employees are women. Women hold 10 of the 54 senior management positions representing 10 percent of the total, and there is still room for improvement,” Gkaliamoutsas said.

“Furthermore, equal opportunities are given to both men and women in recruitment, special assignments and promotions, which enable our female employees to take advantage of these opportunities to enhance their leadership skills and talents,” he added.

“We do not discriminate against women when it comes to employment opportunities. We have also set up elaborate sexual harassment policies and company cultures that direct employee behavior within the company. Participation in trainings and workshops on sexual harassment and how to avoid it is mandatory and we have all participated in them,” noted Gkaliamoutsas.

The company has partnered with donors like the United Nations Foundation and the County government to ensure that 10,000 women receive information pertaining to reproductive health, cancer, menstrual health, contraceptives, sexually transmitted diseases and gender-based violence. The information is being offered through the issuance of newsletters, pamphlets and fliers.

In addition, expansion is underway on the existing company’s on-site health clinics to accommodate and provide reproductive health services and family planning for both the employees and community at large.

“Women play a pivotal role in the success of any society and culture and without the uplifting of women, no society can prosper. From office jobs to taking responsibility for house work, and doing both roles effortlessly, they are the backbone of the society,” said Sarah Ogongo, Deputy Director, Regional Integration while speaking at the event.

The event was in line with the five components of women empowerment i.e. sense of self-worth, right to have and determine choices, right to access to opportunities and resources, right to have power to control their own lives and the ability to influence the direction of social and economic order regionally and nationally.

By Hellen Lunalo

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