While this piece is from 2016, it shares an important perspective; it is important to understand and pursue gender equality and economic empowerment based on context and location. The authors argue against the use of universal definitions of economic empowerment and gender equality, because these definitions do not recognize the many variations in economics and what it means to have economic security and mobility. While authors focus on Fiji and the Solomon Islands, the arguments are important to consider in broader contexts as well. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/0966369X.2016.1160036?journalCode=cgpc20
The connections between women's reproductive empowerment and economic empowerment is a recent area of analysis, and evidence over the last five years has been emerging that demonstrates the associations between greater reproductive freedoms and women's increased participation in economic activities. Read more about the intersections of women's economic and reproductive empowerment here: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13545701.2019.1674451
How can we encourage female economic empowerment? WI-HER Program Coordinator Maddison Hall talks about the importance of providing financial literacy education to teach women how to invest both in themselves and their communities.
By Paula Majumdar, May 2020 After an interview with Dr. Michael Mboya, a Monitoring and Evaluation Specialist at the Ministry of Health in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, I gained some insight as to how impactful our Act to End Neglected Tropical Diseases | East gender equity and social inclusion (GESI) trainings are for our participants. I really appreciated his enthusiasm for the topic and hope that we have the opportunity to foster this type of eagerness among participants in the future. Here are his responses below: Before this training what did you think of the word gender? Prior to the training I was already familiar with the concept of gender, however this training brought greater awareness around social inclusion. I learned more about marginalized groups and other pockets in society that are less fortunate. […]
By Helen John, Gender, Social Inclusion, and Community Engagement Advisor, Integrated Health Project (IHP) Bauchi State, Nigeria COVID-19 and Gender. Women Twice at Risk In December 2019, the world witnessed a major event which has now affected all of us in some way – the outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Coronavirus was declared a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC) by the World Health Organization (WHO) in late January 2020 and has since spread to many countries and territories across the globe. COVID-I9 is an illness which affects the respiratory system. According to the WHO, most people infected will experience mild illness and recover without special treatment. However, older people and those with underlying medical issues like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, chronic respiratory disease, and cancer are more at-risk and may become more seriously ill. Disease outbreaks affect women and men differently, and pandemics make existing inequalities for women, girls and discrimination of other marginalized groups such as persons with disabilities and those in extreme poverty, worse. This needs to be carefully considered, given the different impacts surrounding detection and access to treatment for women and men. […]
By Stella Abah, Gender, Social Inclusion, & Community Engagement Advisor, IHP Kebbi State, Nigeria The PM of SEMCHIC shares background on the workplan and costing templates. Photo Credit: IHP. “Gender integration” and “mainstreaming” are phrases that we frequently use, but I often hear from colleagues, ‘what does that really mean,’ and ‘what does that look like in practice’? Though the terms may sound similar they are in fact not interchangeable. Gender integration is the process of assessing the implications for women, girls, men, boys for any programs and activities, whereas gender mainstreaming is the process of assessing the implications for women, girls, men, boys for any action plans, legislation, and policies. We know that integrating gender and social inclusion into all stages of activity planning, design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation is critical to achieving the goals of the Reproductive, Maternal, Newborn, Child Health, Malaria, and Nutrition (RMNCH+NM) program that we support in Kebbi State in Northern Nigeria, through the USAID Integrated Health Program (IHP). Sometimes, however, even we gender advisors can get stumped when asked to identify tangible examples of gender and social integration. I saw this gap as an opportunity to showcase some of my recent experiences to demonstrate how natural and beneficial this process can be to men, women, boys, girls and society at large. […]
Facility Staff educating women on hand washing and GBV during ANC and postnatal visit at Kanya PHC Every pandemic, disease outbreak or crisis of any kind affects women, men, boys, girls and individuals of diverse gender identities differently. These effects are further compounded with several intersectional factors of exclusion such as disability and ethnicity. COVID-19 is no different, and undoubtedly within Kebbi State, women, girls and marginalized communities will be among the populations most affected by the pandemic. This is in part due to gender norms, which are endemic to the State and Nigeria as a whole. Gender norms are values and practices that affect everyone at all times and in every walk of life. Due to inequitable distribution of power, wealth, opportunities and access to vital health services, COVID-19 will intensify gender issues and imbalances. There is, however, an opportunity to improve relations and responsibilities among the genders if we choose to take it. […]
Engaging Men: The Panacea for Achieving Gender Equality in Maternal and Child Health By Helen John, Gender, Social Inclusion, and Community Engagement Advisor, Integrated Health Project (IHP) Bauchi State, Nigeria Maternal mortality is unacceptably high. Globally, approximately 295,000 women died during and during pregnancy and childbirth in 2017. The vast majority of these deaths (94%) occurred in low-resource settings, and most saddeningly of all, most could have been prevented. Reduction of maternal mortality and infant mortality account for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) objectives 3.1 and 3.2 respectively and are recognized as vital to ensuring more equitable and healthier lifestyles across age and gender by 2030. To improve maternal and infant mortality rates, improved access to and quality of health services is crucial. In Nigeria, men are seen as “gatekeepers” in the family, with the power over decision making and resources. One avenue to increasing women’s access to care is the increased engagement of their male partners in the pregnancy and general maternal, newborn and child health (MNCH) decisions within their families. […]