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Women’s Day event spreads message that immigrant women must get involved

Last update - Saturday, March 15, 2014, 03:23 By Metro Éireann

At the end of 2013, Adaku Ezueda took a group of migrant women on a trip around Leinster House. “Somebody said she didn’t even know what ‘Taoiseach’ is, or who it is,” the i-Smile International founder recalls. “It is shocking how much people are isolated.”

On Tuesday 4 March, Ezueda’s organisation hosted a celebration at the Mulhuddart Community Centre ahead of International Women’s Day, in order to spread the message that migrant women can and should be involved in shaping their communities.
About 80 people milled around the room decorated with African-themed artifacts, met new friends, watched a drama, and tucked into African food.
A performance by a group of women, including a number of asylum seekers, went down particularly well, said Ezueda.
The Dublin-based i-Smile International was set up in August last year with the aim of getting migrant women “to use their strengths, to help people come out of their isolation.
“I try to make people believe in themselves again, to see themselves as useful,” Ezueda added.
It takes patience and energy to bring people out of their shells. Ezueda said she drove some of those in attendance to the event from a reception centre, so that they wouldn’t be out of pocket if they came.
Meanwhile, keynote speaker Cllr Mary McCamley called on women to “be the change” they want to see in their communities, and get involved in local politics and businesses.

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