«Women-only focus group discussion in Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. 17 August 2011 i Version 1 – August 2011 Contents Abbreviations and Acronyms Executive ...»
Addressing women’s time constraints by reflecting on women's specific productive and reproductive labour commitments and including women in the selection and development of labour saving tools. It is important to ensure that men understand the value of women’s labour through gender sensitisation.
Supporting women’s functional literacy by ensuring that literacy training is included in existing capacity development activities and is linked to both the particular activities that women are involved in and the programme's actions to address women’s time and mobility constraints.
Supporting women’s extension, training and information needs by adapting training to women’s capacity and priorities, using innovative methods of participatory (or peer) learning and increasing the use of women extension workers.
Increasing women’s access to financial services by focusing on the suitability of products from a gender perspective, and linking to financial institutions that have the capacity to design and provide ethical products better suited to women’s needs.
A number of complementary actions to the practical actions in WFP P4P Occasional Paper II
have been identified, including:
Linking to organisations that support women’s access to land, e.g. through leasing arrangements and joint purchase.
Focusing on ‘women’s crops and productive activities’, ensuring that women’s role in the value chains of these crops and food products are maximised. This might include supporting the capacity development of women traders.
Supporting access to rural labour markets, ensuring that quality jobs are provided.
Highlighting the successes of women farmers within the programme.
6.4 Possible operational approaches to gender To support implementation of the gender strategy, an overall operational approach to gender needs to be articulated. The proposed gender framework distinguishes between
three operational approaches to gender:
Gender blind: The programme does not distinguish between women’s and men’s roles and assumes equal access to resources.
Gender aware: The programme understands and takes into account gender differences in roles and access to resources but does not seek to challenge the status quo. In other words, the programme addresses and deals with the effects of gender specific constraints, without aiming to contribute towards addressing the causes of the issues affecting women. This may end up contributing to changing the status quo of gender relations in anticipated or unanticipated ways and can have both positive and negative impacts on women.
Gender transformative: The programme sets the transformation of unequal gender relations, i.e. contributing to addressing the structural constraints to women’s empowerment, as an explicit goal.
The four groups of women identified will require different approaches if P4P is to promote their productive activities, market integration and empowerment. As implied above, P4P is current set up to primarily target group 1, with limited outreach to group 2. However, if WFP is willing to make changes to currently implementation plans, the programme could also target groups 3 and 4. This implies that there are two programmatic approaches to
Basic programmatic approach Through this approach, the programme will target mostly FHHs/OWPs (or women producers of crops currently procured through P4P) because these are free from the structural constraints that somehow prevent women from controlling the production and trading of cash crops and household incomes. These women own land and have thus, to a large extent, already achieved a certain level of empowerment. They might be disadvantaged in comparison to their male counterparts for a variety of reasons: lack of access to labour, constraints on time, and so forth. This option would essentially constitute a gender aware approach, with potentially some transformative effects. P4P would not focus on addressing the root causes of women’s empowerment, but rather choose to support women that fit mostly within the P4P mandate and address the effects of their disadvantaged position.
There are a number of activities that could be implemented to support these women to
better integrate into P4P. These include:
Supporting FOs’ capacity to mainstream gender beyond quotas, ensuring that women actually benefit from their membership and have a voice in decision-making processes.
This would imply, for example:
Gender awareness to FOs’ management structures (managers and board members included).
FOs with capacity to have their own gender strategy (i.e. strategic objectives on gender in overall organisational plan).
FOs with capacity to set a gender budget.
Supporting gender-sensitive capacity development (i.e. training adapted to women’s
needs), for example:
Extension training based on demonstration.
Enabling women trainers to operate as village extension training focal points, specifically to cater for the needs of FHHs/OWPs.
Working closely with women to assist them on identifying their own training needs.
Increasing access to capital to invest in women’s productive activities (e.g. for inputs, technology and additional labour on their farms), preferably on a revolving-fund basis.
Working through existing customary traditions to support FHHs’/OWPs’ lack of access to labour. In some cases the community provides support, but it seems to be the case that these forms of support are not as common anymore. However, they can still be used as leverage to galvanise support for this group of women who are likely to have less access to labour.
Women unpaid family workers, or wives of smallholder famers, can also be targeted through a gender aware approach. These are women that are linked to P4P through their husbands and primarily partake in P4P activities through supporting their husbands on their farms. These women can be targeted in several ways and these interventions can both have
opportunities and risks. Some examples:
Focus on extension/capacity development that is attractive to male farmers’ wives; and ensure it includes them. These women will learn about staple crop production and thus contribute to their husbands’ objective of selling surplus produce through P4P.
Opportunities: Women may become more confident and learn transferable skills to support their own productive activities. Training of men and women together may mean that husbands and wives make more decisions jointly in the household and men learn to respect women’s views more.
Risks: The fact that woman become even more competent and productive in the farm work may also mean that they will dedicate more time to it and less time to the production of other subsistence crops than staples that contribute to household food diversity. This may undermine household food and nutrition security, and diminish women’s access to a part of the household income that to an extent they do control.
Access to labour-saving technologies adapted to the needs of women (e.g. culturally appropriate weeding tools).
Opportunities: Women’s work on their husbands’ plots would become less burdensome (both in terms of time and physical exertion), and additional time may be used by women to spend on their own productive activities.
Risks: Time released is just reinvested in men’s productive activities, with no change in gender relations and women having less time for their own crops.
By supporting the membership of wives in FOs and giving them a voice in decisionmaking could allow these women to force their own agenda onto FO agendas.
Opportunities: This additional voice might be used for issues related to P4P (e.g.
purchase of grinding mills to make their P4P work more effective) and unrelated to P4P (e.g. demands for training that support their own priorities).
Risks: If this membership requirement is simply nominal and unsupported by other measures, women can actually be detracted from setting up their own collective structures which would allow them to develop areas where other ambitions lie.
Enhanced programmatic approach Through this approach, the programme sets as an explicit goal the transformation of unequal gender relations, i.e. its contributes to addressing the structural constraints to women’s empowerment. In the context of this approach, the programme could target, women producers/petty traders and women casual agricultural labourers without a link to P4P (or linked to P4P through their husbands), as well as women unpaid family workers and
current producers. Some suggested actions under this approach include:
Procurement of women’s traditional crops/food products as described in Section 5.7.2.
In some cases this might mean revising the country implementation plans only slightly, to start the procurement of pulses for instance or to increase its involvement in processed food products with greater nutrition value (e.g. milk powder and blended foods). Since WFP’s food basket includes such products as vegetable oil and milk powder, there is potential to also procure such products locally from women. This would need to include specialised training (in the domain of food processing) and promotion of women’s groups to achieve the potential of scale production, and allow these producers to expand to other markets. Some country programmes are already following this approach. There might also be scope to expand the overall WFP food basket to include such products as fruit puree, dried fruit and tinned fish, but that might be beyond the scope of P4P.
Working with partners that focus on securing land rights for women as a first prerequisite of their entry into market-oriented agriculture. There are examples of country programmes supporting such efforts, particularly working with women-only groups and joint rights to land.
Strategic gender sensitisation activities, such as inspirational talks for women and men from successful women, and working with other types of women’s groups to encourage their involvement in market-oriented agriculture.
P4P programmes at country level are in a position to decide where they can and wish to position themselves in the context of these operational approaches and it is important to note that gender aware and gender transformative categories are not mutually exclusive.
Not all programmes want and can become gender transformative. It is possible for an essentially gender aware programme to contain, at the outset, one or two gender transformative components or to move towards more aims and activities.
The P4P programme offers WFP and its partners a unique opportunity to target women more effectively and efficiently. Implementing these recommendations, as part of a comprehensive gender strategy, will ensure that WFP can better support women’s integration into the ‘purchase-for-progress’ model in cost-effective and locally empowering ways. This will assist WFP and agencies like WFP to achieve the dual aim of feeding the hungry and poor whilst building the resilience of local communities.
Annex 1: Glossary To support the reading of this report, the terms below are defined with reference to a variety of sources, rather than only official WFP definitions.
Agency The capacity of men and women for willed and voluntary action which is not given by social structures (Jackson and Palmer-Jones 2000).
Empowerment A series of processes and changes whereby women and men’s agency is expanded, i.e. the processes by which the capacity to make strategic life choices and exert influence is acquired by those who have so far been denied it (ALINe 2010; Kabeer 2010).
Gender The term gender refers to culturally based expectations of the roles and behaviours of men and women. The term distinguishes the socially constructed from the biologically determined aspects of being male and female. Unlike the biology of sex, gender roles and behaviours and the relations between women and men (gender relations) can change over time, even if aspects of these roles originated in the biological differences between sexes. 92 Gender equality Gender equality between women and men refers to the equal rights, responsibilities and opportunities of women and men and girls and boys. Equality does not mean that women and men will become the same but that women’s and men’s rights, responsibilities and opportunities will not depend on whether they are born male or female. Gender equality implies that the interests, needs and priorities of both women and men are taken into consideration recognising the diversity of different groups of women and men. Gender equality is not a women’s issue but should concern and fully engage men as well as women.
Equality between women and men is seen both as a human rights issue and as a precondition for, and indicator of, sustainable people-centred development (WFP 2009a).
Gender equity Gender equity means fairness of treatment for women and men, according to their respective needs. This may include equal treatment or treatment that is different but which is considered equivalent in terms of rights, benefits, obligations and opportunities. In the development context, a gender equity goal often requires built-in measures to compensate for the historical and social disadvantages of women. Equity is a means. Equality is the result.93 Gender mainstreaming Gender mainstreaming is the process by which reducing the gaps in development opportunities between women and men and working towards equality between them become an integral part of an organisation's strategy, policies and operations, and the focus of continued efforts to achieve excellence.
IFAD’s Gender Glossary, available http://www.ifad.org/gender/glossary.htm UNESCO’s Gender Mainstreaming Implementation Framework, available http://portal.unesco.org/en/files/11483/10649049699Definitions.doc/Definitions.doc Institutions The ‘rules of the game’ (norms, values, traditions and legislation which determine how people are supposed to act/behave), and the ‘actors’ (organisations) and their capacities that operate according to these rules.
Well-being A state of being with others, where human needs are met, where one can act meaningfully to pursue one's goals, and where one enjoys a satisfactory quality of life94.