Simbi, Huye

Case study

Kaneza Josiane

The impact of travelling long distances for paid work is felt keenly by single parent Josiane
Josiane feels that it is her responsibility to do unpaid care work because traditionally it is the work meant for women at home. However combining it with paid work is challenging.

Josiane Kaneza is a single parent aged 34 living in Huye District, Rwanda. She has had no formal education. Josiane lives with her two children, a daughter aged 13 and a one-year-old boy. Her daughter attends school. Josiane does some paid farming work for neighbours in order to support her family, typically working for six hours a day. She negotiates her payment before starting work and sometimes is paid in the form of food, depending on the level of negotiation and payment available. 

Josiane’s unpaid care work at home includes fetching water, collecting firewood, washing dishes, cleaning the house, sweeping the compound, washing clothes, cooking, farming and taking care of her children. She is supported by her daughter when she comes back from school. Josiane explains,  

‘when my daughter is around she helps me to do some care work like cooking, washing dishes, cleaning the compound, washing clothes, collecting firewood and cleaning the house.’ 

Combining paid work and unpaid care work is hard. In fact, Josiane sometimes gets paid work far away from home and travels with her baby, leaving no one at home. When she is back, she has too much care work and feels tired. The place of work that Josiane regards as most important for her does have childcare facilities. 

Josiane feels that it is her responsibility to do unpaid care work because traditionally it is the work meant for women at home. However combining it with paid work is challenging. She does not get enough time to rest because she leaves home early in the morning and comes back in the evening to care activities such as cooking food and cleaning.  

Josiane feels that the government should provide health insurance to all the people in her community who are poor, because some cannot afford it. The government should also provide livestock to enable these people to get milk and manure to improve their living standards. Finally, Josiane thinks that the government should provide training on modern farming methods to increase productivity levels. 

About Kaneza Josiane

Household (Nuclear)
Female headed
2 children
Male(s) absent
No care responsibilties for disabled people
No migrant(s)
No care responsibilties for older people
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Activities shown are a single day snapshot in the life of the woman.