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IASC Gender Handbook THE BASICS Different Needs Equal Opportunities


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Title: IASC Gender Handbook THE BASICS Different Needs Equal Opportunities

IASC Gender Handbook
THE BASICS Different Needs Equal
  • Dr. Madhumita Sarkar
  • GenCap Gender Advisor
  • UNRC Sri Lanka

Schematic Diagram for Gender Equality Programming
The Goal
The human rights of women, girls, boys and men
are equally promoted and protected and gender
equality is achieved
Targeted action based on gender analysis
Gender Mainstreaming
Programmes to empower women and girls
Human rights based approach to programming
Gender based violence programming
Strategies Programmes
Sexual exploitation and abuse programming
Gender balance in agencies
A gender analysis informs programme planning,
implementation and evaluation
Framework for Gender Equality programming
  • Analyze gender differences
  • Design services to meet the needs of all
  • Access ensured for all
  • Participate equally
  • Train women and men equally
  • and
  • Address GBV in sector programs
  • Collect and analyze and report sex/age
    disaggregated data
  • Target action based on gender analysis
  • Coordinate actions with all partners
  • ( IASC Gender Handbook in Humanitarian Action)

Targeted Action Based on Gender Analysis
  • Conflicts/disasters have very different impacts
    on women, girls, boys and men. They face
    different risks and are victimised in different
    ways. Paying attention to gender means
    recognizing the different needs, capacities and
    contributions of women and men, girls and boys.
  • Gender equality is about ensuring that the
    protection and assistance provided in emergencies
    is planned and implemented in a way that benefits
    men and women equally, taking into account an
    analysis of their needs as well as their
  • Gender is not an issue or a sector on its own.
    It is integral to every issue and area of work.

Gender Analysis Main Points
  • Always ask about the differences between womens
    and mens experiences.
  • Ask questions about the responsibilities,
    activities, interests and priorities of women and
    men, and how their experience of problems may
  • Seek the inputs and views of women as well as men
    about decisions that will affect the way they
  • Avoid assuming that all women or all men share
    the same needs and perspectives

Gender Analysis Main Points
  • Undertake participatory assessment with women,
    girls, boys and men together and separately.
  • Consult with the entire affected population
  • Use the information to guide your programmes

Good practice following the Orissa cyclones. For
example, in distributing blankets, Concern asked
women to form a committee, allowed them to
identify the most needy and then distribute the
blankets themselves. A weaving project started
by ActionAid was applauded because weavers were
able to intervene they were subsequently taken
to another area to select their own cotton and
then given assistance with marketing
Gender Mainstreaming
  • Gender mainstreaming is a means of
  • attaining gender equality. It is an approach
  • used to integrate womens and mens needs
  • and experiences into the design,
  • implementation, monitoring and evaluation of
  • Policies and Programmes in all political,
  • economic, religious and societal spheres so
  • that women and men benefit equally, and
  • inequality is not perpetuated.

WHO DOES WHAT? What do men and women do and how
and where do they do it? When doing Gender
Analysis of a community, we could ask What roles
do men and women typically play in the
community? What is the kind of work, men and
women commonly do in the community? Who works for
pay? How much does men and women get paid for the
same work? (eg at the construction site, while
making roads, etc) Who cares for children and
does other family work (reproductive work)? Who
cares for the children when women go out to
work? How many hours a day are spent on home and
family care? And by whom? What number of hours
are spent doing unpaid, underpaid, or undervalued
work and by whom? Is there a family member
involved in a community organization or volunteer
work? Who, And for how many hours a week?
When doing Gender Analysis of a program, we could
ask What roles do men and women typically
play in the program? Does the program ensure
equal opportunity to men and women in different
positions, Does the program change the activity
patterns of men or women, and how? Does the
program increase or decrease women or mens
workload (reproductive or productive)? Does the
program address the specific needs of men and
Questions on Access and Control
  • Who has access and control over resources,
    information, knowledge, networks, services and
    decision making?
  • On whose name is the house / property registered?
  • Are women paid different wages than men for the
    same work?
  • Who controls household income?
  • Which decisions in the home do men and women
    typically make?
  • Which decisions in the community do men and women
    typically make?
  • What level of education and/or training do men
    and women have?
  • Who has access to information on health, poverty
    alleviation programs, trainings, government
    initiatives, food for work programs, etc
  • Who has access to services like health care,
    education, etc?
  • Who takes decisions on participation in different
    foras in the community like LOCAL POLITICAL

When doing Gender Analysis of a program, we could
ask Who makes decisions and who does the
groundwork in the program? How many men and women
are involved in the programming planning and
execution? What knowledge do women and men have
about the particular sector or issue addressed by
the program? Do women and men have equal access
to program events, benefits or services? Who
benefits the most from the program?
Questions on Influencing Factors
  • What is the social, political and/or economic
    factor that explains the answers to the above
  • What are the cross-cutting issues?
  • In this step we are basically looking at why the
    responses to roles and responsibilities and
    access and control are the way they are. What are
    the influencing factors? The influencing factors
    could be
  • Caste
  • Religion
  • Disability
  • Geographic location
  • Values
  • Economic status
  • Political ideology/ structures/ institutions
  • Education/training
  • Policies

Questions that could be asked to the
community Does GENDER affect the roles and
responsibilities in the home/community/programs? D
oes GENDER affect the way the roles are valued/
or responsibilities given to men and women? Does
GENDER/caste/religion/ geographic location affect
access to services? Does GENDER/caste/religion/dis
ability/ sexual orientation affect participation
in institutions? How does caste/culture/
religion/ disability affect the distribution and
consumption of food/ access to education/
mobility? How does violence within the family and
community affect participation in programs? Does
political structures/ideology affect
participation of women and men in these
  • Good practice is noted in response to the
    Mozambique flood when agencies took a long-term
    approach to recovery that
  • included joint tilling of land, joint housing
    registration in a couples name or the womans
    name in female headed households, and womens
    obligatory participation in construction

GAD lessons from the Australian Aid Program
  • The Indonesia Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies
  • The project recognized the different roles that
    men and women play in supporting women during
    pregnancy and childbirth.
  • In designing health education and health outreach
    activities, the project undertook
    gender-sensitive surveys and used the findings to
    develop health communication materials and
    strategies that took into account the gender
  • The information was used to develop a GAD
    strategy and health communication activities in a
    way that recognized the need for different
    messages and approaches for men and women.
  • The project incorporated gender issues in health
    worker training and in training for master
    trainers, to ensure their sensitivity to gender
    when developing future health worker training.
  • Furthermore, it incorporated gender in the
    development of the activity monitoring system

  • Empowerment is about people - both women and
  • men - taking control over their lives setting
  • own agendas, gaining skills, building self
  • confidence, solving problems and developing self
  • reliance. In essence, empowerment implies a
  • shift in the power relations that cause a
  • social group to suffer low social status or
  • injustice.
  • During a visit to a Tsunami camp location in
    India it was observed that some men, women and
    children were sitting under trees away from the
    main cluster of camps. When asked, the men
    reported, these are lower caste community and
    work on our boats as laborers. They are not
    affected by the tsunami.

  • During one of the initial trainings with Mahila
    Samakhya, a programme for women's equality and
    empowerment in India, we were discussing change.
    We were talking about what kind of world would we
    like to have and what all needs to be changed. We
    used the metaphoric symbol of a cot for present
    system whose four legs are uneven. So when we
    sit on it we shake which makes us uncomfortable
    and insecure. "What shall we do?"

Women empowerment is associated with changing
power relationships in all spheres of life
Human rights-based approach to programming
  • It identifies rights-holders and their
    entitlements and corresponding duty-bearers and
    their obligations, and seeks to strengthen the
    capacities of rights-holders to make their claims
    and of duty-bearers to satisfy these claims. A
    rights-based approach also emphasizes principles
    of participation and empowerment of women and
    accountability for violations of their human

Immediately on arrival in the camp 21 men are
rounded up and put in jail, they are in lock up
for the past three months… Girls cannot go to
school alone they need to move in groups…
Gender-based violence programming
  • Gender-based violence against women, girls, boys
    and men increases in conflict situations. These
    violations undermine and place barriers to the
    enjoyment of rights and the attainment of gender

What is GBV?
  • UNHCR (2003)
  • Any harm that is done against a persons will
    based on their gender and that has a negative
    impact on that persons physical and
    psychological health, development, and identity
  • IASC (2005)
  • An umbrella term for any harmful act that is
    perpetrated against a persons will, and that is
    based on socially ascribed (gender) differences
    between males and females

GBV in Conflict
  • Random
  • By-product of the collapse in social and moral
  • War booty
  • Systematic
  • Carried out to destabilize populations and
    destroy bonds
  • Aim is often for maximum humiliation and shame
    for survivor and her family

GBV in Conflict
  • Stop resistance through fear
  • Womens bodies are used to send a message to
    opposing groups
  • Tool for ethnic cleansing
  • Public rape to encourage flight
  • Forced impregnation, mutilation of genitals and
    reproductive organs, intentional HIV
    transmission, murder of pregnant women

GBV in Conflict Other Examples
  • Rape, sexual slavery, forced prostitution, forced
  • Girl child soldiers expected to provide sexual
    services in addition to other duties
  • Exclusion from Recovery programs
  • Ongoing victimization

Other forms of GBV Not necessarily
  • Rape, sexual abuse, incest
  • Trafficking
  • Pre-flight or while fleeing
  • Refugee/IDP girls sometimes disappear (no data)
  • Harmful Traditional Practices
  • Forced/early marriage
  • Sex-selective abortion, infanticide, neglect (60
    million girls missing worldwide)
  • FGM (90 million girls in Africa)
  • Domestic Violence
  • Sexual Exploitation

  • Lack of understanding of GBV attitudes and
    behavior of helpers (us)
  • Under-reporting
  • Not a priority (Life saving issue?) The women and
    child desk/Crime against women desk as it is
    known in different countries is not recognized as
    an important desk/ not invested with many powers
  • Lack of data it doesnt happen
  • You dont understand our culture.
  • We dont have that here.
  • It is a private matter.
  • Laws and policies in the country

Case study
  • The Australian Women at Risk Program is designed
    to identify
  • refugee women at risk in refugee camps or during
  • conflicts to fast track their removal to safe
  • Since its inception the project has failed to
    meet its modest
  • quota. Despite sixteen million refugee women and
    children less
  • than a third of the annual allocation of sixty
    visas were
  • issued.
  • What could be the difficulties in identifying
    women at risk?
  • What needs to be done?

The problem
  • The potential key to the problem was identified
    when it was found that seven out of the 22 senior
    male officials used a revealing phrase in the
    difficulties faced in identifying women at risk.
    They described that the trauma that some women
    experience was only rape implying that rape was
    insufficient ground for considering a woman for
    the project.

If only rape was the criterion we could send you
most of the women. It happens all the time
specially single young women, we cannot do much
about it…..
An official said rape is not the criterion for
according refugee status so it cannot be applied
to the project. More extreme forms of violence
need to be experienced.
Rape is so common , that is the way women got
extra food from the guards.
Some women exploited their sexuality within the
camp situation to get favors from the guards
It happened to them even before they came, so
women are used to it sort of expect it so dont
see it as violence like beaten up or tortured.
From refugees, race and gender the multiple
discrimination against refugee women- by Eileen
Pittaway and Linda Bartolomei
Gender balance in humanitarian agencies
  • Gender balance is a human resource issue
    referring to the number of women versus men
    employed by agencies (international and national
    staff) and in programmes that such agencies
    initiate or support, such as shelter/WATSAN/food
    distribution programmes.

Sexual exploitation and abuse programming
  • While SEA can be perpetuated by anyone, the term
    SEA has been
  • used in reference to sexual exploitation and
    abuse perpetrated
  • by personnel of our organizations, including both
    civilian staff and
  • Uniformed peacekeeping personnel.
  • Sexual Exploitation
  • Sexual exploitation means the ABUSE of a
    position of
  • vulnerability
  • differential power or
  • trust
  • for sexual purposes
  • Sexual abuse occurs when there is a physical
    intrusion of a sexual nature
  • by force
  • under unequal conditions or
  • under coercive conditions.

Sexual exploitation and abuse programming
  • Sexual exploitation and abuse by humanitarian
    workers constitute acts of gross misconduct and
    are therefore grounds for termination of
  • Sexual activity with children (persons under the
    age of 18) is prohibited regardless of the age of
    majority or age of consent locally. Mistaken
    belief in the age of a child is not a defence
  • Exchange of money, employment, goods, or services
    for sex, including sexual favours or other forms
    of humiliating, degrading or exploitative
    behavior is prohibited. This includes exchange
    of assistance that is due to beneficiaries.

Sexual exploitation and abuse programming
  • Sexual relationships between humanitarian workers
    and beneficiaries are strongly discouraged since
    they are based on inherently unequal power
    dynamics. Such relationships undermine the
    credibility and integrity of humanitarian aid
  • Where a humanitarian worker develops concerns or
    suspicions regarding sexual abuse or exploitation
    by a fellow worker, whether in the same agency or
    not, s/he must report such concerns via
    established agency reporting mechanisms.
  • Humanitarian workers are obliged to create and
    maintain an environment which prevents sexual
    exploitation and abuse and promotes the
    implementation of their code of conduct.
    Managers at all levels have particular
    responsibilities to support and develop systems
    which maintain this environment.

A gender analysis informs programme planning,
implementation and evaluation
What do we analyze?
  • Analyse the impact of the humanitarian crisis on
    women, girls, boys and men.

Design Services
  • Design services to meet the needs of
  • women and men equally. Each sector
  • should review the way they work and
  • make sure women and men can
  • benefit equally from the services, for
  • example there are separate latrines
  • for women and men hours for
  • trainings, food or non-food items
  • distribution are set so that everyone
  • can attend, etc

Ensure access
  • Make sure that women
  • and men can access
  • services equally.
  • Sectors should
  • continuously monitor
  • who is using the
  • services and consult
  • with the community to
  • ensure all are accessing
  • the service

Ensure participation
  • Ensure women, girls, boys and
  • men participate equally in the
  • design, implementation,
  • monitoring and evaluation of
  • humanitarian response, and
  • that women are in decision
  • making positions. If it is
  • problematic to have women in
  • committees, put in place
  • mechanisms to ensure their
  • voices are brought to the
  • committees

Train women and men equally
  • Ensure that women and
  • men benefit equally
  • from training or other
  • capacity-building
  • initiatives offered by the
  • sector actors. Make
  • certain that women and
  • men have equal
  • opportunities for
  • capacity building and
  • training, including
  • opportunities for work
  • or employment.

Address gender-based violence
  • Make sure that all sectors
  • take specific actions to
  • prevent and/or respond to
  • gender-based violence.
  • The IASC Guidelines for
  • Gender-based Violence
  • Interventions in
  • Humanitarian Settings
  • should be used by all as a
  • tool for planning and
  • coordination.

Disaggregate data by age and sex
  • Collect and analyse all
  • data concerning the
  • humanitarian response
  • by age and sex
  • breakdown, with
  • differences analysed and
  • used to develop a profile
  • of at-risk populations
  • and how their needs are
  • being met by the
  • assistance sector.

Targeted Actions
  • Based on the gender
  • analysis, make sure that
  • women, girls, boys and
  • men are targeted with
  • specific actions when
  • appropriate. Where one
  • group is more at-risk than
  • others, special measures
  • should be taken to protect
  • that group. Examples
  • would be safe spaces for
  • women and measures to
  • protect boys from forced
  • recruitment.

  • Set up gender
  • support networks to
  • ensure coordination
  • and gender
  • mainstreaming in all
  • areas of
  • humanitarian work.
  • Sector actors should
  • be active in coordination
  • mechanisms.

Checklists to assess gender equality programming
  • All actors should use the basics, protection
    and participation checklists in addition to
    their sector-specific checklist.

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