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Feed the Future Partners in Tanzania Strive for Better Gender Integration in Projects

Continue reading our March newsletter

On International Women’s Day, 2012, Feed the Future Tanzania held a one-day Gender Planning Workshop for implementing partners to reflect on key economic, policy, and social challenges and opportunities for women.

The purpose of the workshop was to discuss how to reinforce the critical role of gender in Feed the Future activities, to understand gender integration best practices, and to establish a process for continual information sharing related to gender across Feed the Future implementing partners.

Participants in the workshop familiarized themselves with U.S. Government gender analysis policies and instruments such as the Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index. They also identified key challenges to enhancing women’s empowerment and reducing gender gaps in Tanzania’s Feed the Future projects, including: inadequate staff training on gender issues and integration; indifferent attitudes amongst staff towards the issue of gender; striking the balance of closing gender gaps and empowering women without positioning men at a disadvantage; and lack of a common perception over the importance of conducting a gender assessment within each project.

As a result of the workshop, the implementing partners agreed to form a joint Gender Working Group to strengthen gender integration as a cross-cutting issue and facilitate dialogue among one another on gender-related issues affecting their projects. They stressed the need for staff to adopt the roles of “gender champions” to ensure representation and inclusive coverage of gender issues.

Capacity building and training for the gender champions was identified as an important factor to enhance integration. The group will begin moving forward to address these issues and support gender integration throughout all aspects of Feed the Future programming in Tanzania.

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