United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM)

UNIFEM South Asia Office

Governance

 

2001-2002

Mainstreaming Gender:

UNIFEM facilitates gender mainstreaming by using a participatory bottom-up approach. Linking grassroots women’s voices and concerns with policy-makers, UNIFEM has effectively used this approach in the Peasant Women’s Summits in Bangladesh, India, Nepal and Pakistan, in the Preparatory Process to Beijing and in engendering National Planning in India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka with respective Governments. These were in response to preserve the continuum of UN conferences and meetings, leading the process to its logical conclusion - for women to be part of the planning process itself.

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Follow-up to Advocacy for the Ninth Five Year Plan in India: UNIFEM’s Ninth Plan intervention made it evident that women were handicapped in every area of their lives by a lack of access to information. In response, UNIFEM has undertaken initiatives in different parts of India, in an effort to institutionalize the process of information access and dissemination. It has supported the setting up of Resource and Information Centres in the North East by the North-East Network, in West Bengal by the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences and Sanchetna and in Maharashtra by the Stree Aadhar Kendra. These Centres are designed to collect, collate and disseminate information key to women’s lives in the appropriate language and packaging to meet existing needs. They provide access to information on options, changes, markets, opportunities, policy directions, and on various international declarations pertaining to women’s rights, to women in the urban and rural areas. Creating an interface between the government and women’s groups and collectives, they act as a link between women’s organizations and state agencies to generate public advocacy and strengthened knowledge-base facilitating access to development programmes that state agencies offer.

Operationalizing the National Policy for the Empowerment of Women 2001:

Working closely with the Department of Women & Child Development (DWCD), Government of India, and New Concept Information Systems, UNIFEM is supporting the drawing up of a central level action plan to operationalize the National Policy for the Empowerment of Women. The process involves translating the National Policy of Women 2001 into a set of concrete actions through a consultative participatory process with all stakeholders, in close association with the Core Group, appointed by DWCD.

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