Mbombela - The Mpumalanga legislature will host a Women's Parliament on Friday with the intention of improving the lives of local women, especially those in rural areas.
Spokeswoman for the provincial legislature, Tsholofelo Moreosele, said there are a number of programmes aimed at empowering women, but that rural women were not always able to access these programmes.
She said rural women were constrained by tradition where men are regarded as the breadwinners and women as housewives.
Those who may have access to land, did not always know how to use the land effectively, she added.
"They also lack access to financing due to the inability to develop viable business plans and proposals," she said.
She said other issues that need to be raised during the Women's Parliament include the effects of the global economic meltdown, adding that the financial crisis was having a serious impact on funding for women's programmes.
"Programmes that were started during the time of economic growth may be at risk," she said.
The theme of the Women's Parliament will be: Working together with women to intensify oversight to foster service delivery.
Meanwhile, Mpumalanga Premier David Mabuza and other members of the provincial cabinet will travel to the village of Phake outside Siyabuswa on Monday to hand over RDP houses as well as other goods to needy people identified in the area.
The Department of Human Settlements will hand over the RDP houses to nine women, while the Department of Culture Sport and Recreation will hand over a gym and soccer kits to 20 soccer and netball teams.
The Department of Finance will hand over beds, kitchen tables, chairs, stoves and gardening tools to impoverished families. The Department of Education will hand over musical instruments, including pianos, to four local schools.
National Women's Day commemorates the historic 1958 women's march to the Union Buildings in Pretoria where South African women from all backgrounds confronted the Apartheid regime about the oppressive pass-laws.