Agriculture / Event / Gender news / ILRI / PIL / Value Chains / Women

Gender experts meet to develop strategies to integrate livelihoods and rights in women’s empowerment programs

Florence Chepkirui, a blind dairy farmer in Saoset village in Kenya's Bomet County

Florence Chepkirui, a blind dairy farmer in Saoset village in Kenya’s Bomet County (photo credit: ILRI/Paul Karaimu).

On 25 February 2013, some 25 gender researchers, development practitioners and women’s rights advocates will meet at the Nairobi campus of the International Livestock Research Institute (ILRI) for a day-long workshop to discuss practical ways of simultaneously integrating economic development and rights in programs aimed at empowering women.

This integrated approach will improve the impacts – at both individual and household level – of livelihood and rights programs that target women.

Development interventions aimed at enhancing women’s empowerment often do not combine women’s economic opportunities and women’s rights.

However, researchers have recently recognized that providing women with economic opportunities does not necessarily result in their empowerment. Similarly, women’s awareness of their rights without the financial resources to exercise those rights often does not lead to empowerment.

The upcoming workshop therefore seeks to develop strategies to simultaneously integrate livelihoods and rights in development interventions aimed at enhancing women’s empowerment through livestock microcredit and value chains.

The participants will share their experiences of simultaneously integrating livelihoods and rights in programs that target women.

They will also discuss the findings of a pilot study in Kenya to measure impacts of livelihood projects on women’s empowerment, including rights, using the adapted Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture Index (WEAI).

Representatives of the following organizations are expected to attend the workshop: CARE International, the East Africa Dairy Development project, the Ford Foundation, ILRI, Juhudi Kilimo, the Kenya Agricultural Research Institute, Kenya Women Holding, Moi University and the University of Nairobi.

For more information, please visit the workshop web page.

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