March 8th is International Women’s Day in Mongolia as it is around the world. But, how does International Women’s Day in Mongolia relate to Eternal Landscapes? Those of you who have travelled with us know that we employ only Mongolian female trip assistants – Mongolian women working in tourism as a way of improving their lives, supporting their families, and for the independence it brings. We also work countrywide with a network of families that we form long-term local community partnerships with. And we work in partnership with small Mongolian projects and NGOs a number of which work to improve the lives of women in Mongolia. This blog post focuses on what International Women’s Day in Mongolia
Our trip assistants represent a broad spectrum of Mongolian society and include herders, a widow, a mum of three, a single mum of one, a mum of four, and a dedicated student training to be a GP. Many are English teachers. Pride runs deep in our female team and we have chosen them as they have a willingness to do right, a desire to learn, and have a genuine love for and connection with their country. It’s a joy to see them develop as women and to see them go from strength to strength.
For International Women’s Day in Mongolia, we asked them two questions – what do they most want for women in Mongolia and what do they most want for themselves as a woman in Mongolia?
Odnoo is from the small community of Erdenedalai in Dundgobi Aimag (the middle Gobi) but is now based in Ulaanbaatar. Although she is an English teacher, she likes to work in tourism so that she can develop her skills and language and pass this new knowledge on to her young students.
To help empower Mongolian women by organising and arranging meetings and sports events in rural Mongolia to bring women together.
To make my life interesting and powerful. And to carry on playing sports as much as I can.
Part of our Erdenedalai family in the middle Gobi, Tuya is based in Ulaanbaatar and her main profession is as a teacher. Outside of school term she is a loyal and hardworking member of our team. I asked her recently about her career – she replied that her focus in life was just to be a good person and role model – for her young family, for the school children she teaches and for the younger less experienced members of the Eternal Landscapes family as well.
For them to be independent, strong, and well educated
To be a good mum, daughter, and wife but also to be independent, educated, and stronger.
The Galbdrakh Family
The Galbadrakh family is a young family – yak herders – that make their home in the district of Tsenkher in the Khangai Mountains. Terbish-Ragchaa and her husband Galdbadrakh are members of the Cooperative Ar Arvijin Delgerekh – an NGO that works solely with yak herders in Arkhangai Province in the central heartland of Mongolia helping them to produce spun yak down thus helping to sustain and improve the livelihoods of the member herders as it allows them to diversify and increase their income (the herders being paid the full value of their harvest for a higher price than the local market).
We asked Terbish-Ragchaa and Galbadrakh what do they most want for the future of their daughters and their answer was ‘to educate their girls to the best of their ability, for them to be independent, but for them to keep a connection to their traditions and culture.’ They feel the challenges are ‘protecting and supporting women’s rights. Sometimes men prefer that women just continue in a traditional more subservient role. Some men think that women don’t need to be educated, and that their role is just to care for the family and look after their husbands and kids. But nowadays, things are changing especially for the younger generations which is good.’
Having grown up in the countryside and studied to be an accountant, Zaya is now focusing on her plan to eventually study abroad. Until that happens, she is improving her language. She particularly likes history and is striving to learn more about her home country. Her dedication and enthusiasm for EL – our team, guests, and philosophy – is what makes her such a great member of EL.
I want to study more about the world, read more and travel more.
Upcycling For International Women’s Day In Mongolia
We work in partnership with the Mongolian Quilting Centre, established in 2005 by Selenge Tserendash to make a difference in the lives of disadvantaged and unemployed women in Mongolia. For International Women’s Day in Mongolia, they held an ‘Upcycled Crafts – Redesigning Waste’ event which included a fashion show of clothes and articles made from old clothes and waste materials including plastic bags. Selenge and her designer Ganchimeg wanted to let Mongolian people know that old clothes can be restyled (“In this post-pandemic economic crisis, fashioning using second-hand clothes is timely”) and that it is possible to contribute to the protection of Mongolia by helping to reduce waste and by making positive change. As well as the fashion show workshops there were During the event, there will be workshops on upcycling. Alongside the Mongolian Quilting Center, other NGOs that work on Green Technology are presenting their work at event.
From Ulaanbaatar, Deegii studied as an English teacher at the Mongolian National University of Education. As well as education, another of her passions is conversation with open-minded people. Degii likes to work in tourism for the opportunity it gives her to learn something new. And believes it will greatly help with her contribution to the field of education.
I think that there is so much on women’s mind that we never publicly express. I just want these things to the women in Mongolia.A society without violence against women. , A freedom to express our views without fear, and strength to listen to our minds.
I want to be a good person who has purpose, and aspirations, and who is independent.
If you’re interested in the work we do with women in Mongolia then look at our Mongolia women-only tour or get in touch with your questions.
Jess @ Eternal Landscapes