Factors that enhance Muslim women participation in community development: a case study of Nakasozi Pre-School
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This study was based on hypotheses that; objective programs in the areas of education, awareness, and access to information have been proved to be essential in the struggle to empower Muslim women to occupy their spaces more reasonably; and, appropriate Islamic teaching aimed at emancipating women from male dominance as traditionally and culturally practiced, and raising their social status as equal human beings, encourages Muslim women active involvement and participation in community development activities and related agendas. The overall objective of the study was to identify factors that enhance Muslim communities to encourage their women folks to play active and leading roles in public social development activities thereby enhancing purposeful involvement and participation. Specific objectives included; to identify at least three major factors that enhance active involvement and participation of Muslim women in community activities; to interrogate the Holly Koran and Hadith in support of women freedom and liberty; and, to recommend appropriate strategies to enhance active grassroot Muslim communities’ involvement and participation in organized development activities. Key findings of the study were consistent with the hypotheses mentioned. The study found out that programs like MRCU deliberately conceived and organized with a principle aim of empowering the most vulnerable members of community i.e. Women produce overwhelming positive results. There is evident that women associated with MRCU are increasingly taking up central roles and responsibilities in community development agendas. It was also noted that logical balanced interpretation of Islamic Holy Scriptures (the Koran and Hadith) and teaching facilitates understanding (among the Muslim communities) of women as equal human beings who have independent places in society. The study recommended among other things that Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC) should take lead in promoting Muslim women emancipation efforts through education programs aimed at empowering the masses on issues regarding human dignity and basic rights. The study also calls on partners in development to target empowering UMSC as a civil society to champion plural values that enhance human development and sustainability. It is also recommended that Islamic preaching in mosques and other forums should be guided by insisting on appropriateness and fairness to all members of society. The study attracted 37 adult oral discussants (Note: the original number had been anticipated to be 65 including the learners. However, this was not possible due to unforeseen circumstances).