A PAPER PRESENTED AT A GENDER AND HUMAN RIGHTS
WORKSHOP FOR COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS
AT HOTEL GARDENS, KAWEMPE MBOGO
LINDA TUMUSIIME MUGISHA
IMPORTANCE OF GENDER IN DEVELOPMENT
What is Gender?
Gender refers to the social differences between females and males through out the life cycle. Gender determines the roles power and resources for females and males in any community and therefore it is not only about women. The roles may include productive activities such as farming, reproductive roles such as child bearing and rearing.
These social differences are learned and are embedded in every culture although they are changeable and may be different from one culture to another.
Why the focus on gender?
The focus on gender has been due to the need to address women’s needs and circumstances as they are more disadvantaged than men although it is important to also understand the needs of men and boys. For instance in some cultures women are perceived to be subordinate to men from some proverbs such as “ A doomed clan is that whose women fight with spears, ‘where there are no women, women become judges etc.
The focus is therefore to ensure that inequalities among boys, girls’ men and women, are reduced and to create an understanding of human rights among women and men. To also increase the presence and capacity of women to participate in decision making at all levels.
To ensure that gender concerns are catered for at all levels of planning.
We are all expected to address gender issues. Policy makers, community based workers and law enforcement officers however are expected to ensure that all peoples needs both men and women are met equally and their rights protected. Gender enables the classification of roles socially rather than based on sex (biological and physiological characteristics).
What is Gender equality?
Gender equality refers to the equal enjoyment by females and males...