2024-06-14

Ministry of Gender to adopt new plans that will address gender-based disparities

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The Ministry of Gender, Community Development, and Social Welfare says it plans to adopt new plans that will address gender-based disparities exacerbated by vulnerability to natural disasters among women and girls.

Principal Gender Officer in the ministry, Stephano Joseph said the initiatives seek to empower women to actively participate in disaster preparedness and response thereby reducing the gender disparities prevalent in such situations.
He was speaking at the end of a gender and power analysis report validation meeting in Blantyre.
The meeting disseminated the analysis and recommendations of a report which was conducted and presented by Christian Aid in partnership with FOCESE.
Head of Programs at Christian Aid, Dunia Mphande, said the analysis was conducted to empower women’s groups, enhancing their capacity to advocate, lead, and engage in disaster risk reduction and resilience building.
The report was funded by Australian Aid through UN Women.
Far too many girls, especially those from the poorest families, still face gender discrimination in education, child marriage and pregnancy, sexual violence, and unrecognized domestic work. These are some types of gender inequality.
Empowering women is essential to the health and social development of families, communities, and countries. When women are living safe, fulfilled, and productive lives, they can reach their full potential. contributing their skills to the workforce and raising happier and healthier children.
Disaster preparedness and response depend on gathering, analyzing, and acting on timely and accurate information before (hazard and early warning information), during (disaster needs assessment), and after disasters (progress of post-disaster recovery).
Preparing for disasters saves countless lives, speeds up people’s recovery, and saves money. The IFRC supports National Societies to continually improve their local preparedness and response capacity ultimately preventing and reducing the impacts of disasters on communities.
Men and women consequently often consider women’s lack of power ‘natural’ and appropriate. This, for example, significantly reduces women’s access to decision-making as they may lack self-confidence or be actively prevented from speaking up in public meetings.
Disaster risk reduction (DRR) is aimed at preventing new and reducing existing disaster risks as well as managing residual risk. DRR contributes to strengthening resilience and the achievement of risk-informed sustainable development.

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