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close this bookPoverty Elimination and the Empowerment of Women (DFID, 2000, 51 p.)
close this folder5. Priorities for DFID
View the documentProgress so far
View the documentPurpose of the strategy
View the documentSpecific objectives
View the documentSetting priorities
View the documentChannels for action

Specific objectives

5.11 DFID's strategy will aim to support the achievement often specific objectives, consistent with both the International Development Targets and the global Platform for Action, and with the analysis set out in the situation analysis in this paper. The specific objectives are set out in Box 3, along with examples of the kinds of actions we might support to achieve them.

Box 3. DFID objectives and examples of actions

Objective 1.
To promote equality in rights for women and men through international and national policy reform.

· Development and implementation of equal opportunities policies.
· Gender aware approaches to international agreements and regulations.
· Development of new tools for analysis and international and national policy making, including better statistics.

Objective 2.
To secure greater livelihood security, access to productive assets, and economic opportunities for women as well as men.

· Improved access to financial services for women.
· Improved access for women to affordable energy, water and sanitation, and transport services.
· Reforms to land and inheritance laws.
· Improved information flows, particularly for women farmers and entrepreneurs.
· Adherence to core labour standards.
· Development of 'family friendly' employment practices.

Objective 3.
To further close gender gaps in human development, particularly education and health

· Development of policies and programmes to remove gender barriers to education.
· Development of policies and programmes to support achievement of International Development Targets for maternal mortality and access to reproductive health services.
· Improvements to national statistical systems to provide sex-disaggregated data across all key social indicators.

Objective 4.
To promote the more equal participation of women in decision making and leadership roles at all levels.

· Capacity-building and other support to women's organisations.
· Electoral and other reforms to remove barriers to women's participation in public life.
· Public awareness campaigns to challenge gender stereotypes.

Objective 5.
To increase women's personal security and reduce gender-based violence.

· Reform and strengthening of criminal and civil law.
· Awareness-raising of women's rights among police and judiciary.
· Public information campaigns.
· Support to women's organisations.
· Improved knowledge and statistics.

Objective 6.
To strengthen institutional mechanisms and national machineries for the advancement of women in governments and civil society.

· Civil service and public spending reforms to establish and support appropriate government structures.
· Strengthening of role of civil society organisations in advancing gender equality.
· Public awareness campaigns.

Objective 7.
To promote equality for women under the law and non-discrimination in access to justice.

· Reform and strengthening of criminal and civil law.
· Support to legal literacy programmes.
· Training and capacity building for police judiciary, and organisations in civil society.
· Public information campaigns.

Objective 8.
To reduce gender stereotyping, and bring about changes in social attitudes in favour of women.

· Support to media projects and campaigns, including gender training for journalists and programme makers.
· Support to women's organisations.
· Awareness-raising among policy makers and political leaders.

Objective 9.
To help develop gender aware approaches to the management of the environment and the safeguarding of natural resources.

· Gender aware planning and women's participation in the development of National Strategies for Sustainable Development.
· Strengthen tenure and common property rights in line with gender equity.
· Ensure that local planning and access to natural resources is gender aware.
· Improved data and research.

Objective 10.
To ensure that progress is made in upholding the rights of both girls and boys within the framework of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

· Implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
· Improved data, research, and statistics.
· Support to programmes to eliminate the worst forms of child labour.

5.12 The achievement of some of these objectives will require continued progress along familiar lines. Others will need new approaches and the development of more incisive tools and methods. All depend on strong political will, backed up by appropriate resources. Promoting equality for women can be controversial and may provoke opposition or provoke intense public debate. Additional resources are not always implied, as many of these objectives should be achievable through the more equitable distribution of existing resources. As gender gaps close, economic benefits should flow which will make more resources available, thus creating a virtuous cycle which will further accelerate the pace of change.

5.13 Most of the objectives refer to country level work, but all depend on action at the regional and international levels too. Achievement of greater livelihood security, for example, will depend on the reform of global frameworks for trade regulation and codes of conduct as well as on changes in regulations and the creation of opportunities at the country level. It is also important to note that the objectives are highly interdependent. Thus, while better access to education will help women to equip themselves to take a more prominent role in public life, more women will need to find their way into positions of power and influence before they gain a real voice in public policy. At the same time, it will be difficult for women to rise to positions of seniority and influence in society without major changes in attitudes and values. These changes, in turn, will accelerate as women have more opportunities to demonstrate their leadership capabilities.

5.14 The achievement of these objectives will depend on the continued strengthening of the 'twin-track' approach, combining focused actions aimed at women's empowerment and gender aware action in the mainstream of development work. In all cases, gender sensitive social assessment work will be required to ensure that policy and practice are informed by a full understanding of the diversity of women's experience and aspirations.