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A training marked the launch of capacity building efforts on the new UN-REDD Gender Marker Rating System, an effort to promote gender equality within the 2018-2020 Technical Assistance Programme by establishing a clear framework for identifying areas for mainstreaming gender and for monitoring progress.

“We found that the national forest inventory teams with women participating were more sensible than the men-only teams” stated NFMS Team Leader Julian Fox at the recent UN-REDD Gender Marker Training session.  This comment was among a number of interesting observations shared at the event, held at FAO headquarters on 27 November 2018. 

Without a doubt, climate mitigation efforts, including REDD+, can greatly benefit from greater recognition of the benefits that women’s participation, deep knowledge and contribution bring to the sector. Similarly, mainstreaming gender within REDD+ processes can help countries attain their climate goals while also ensuring women and men are equitably empowered to play active roles in forest management, and that benefits from forests and emissions reductions are distributed equitably among them.  More proactive involvement of women is necessary in all steps – from REDD+ consultations and capacity development to fieldwork, decision-making and benefit sharing. 

It is for precisely these reasons that the UN-REDD Programme developed its Gender Marker Rating System and is now taking active steps to train its team on its use. The training goes beyond simply updating Programme staff on the System itself. It is also focuses on building their capacity on how to integrate gender within activities, establish indicators and targets, as well as monitor and report, on a yearly basis, how such actions contribute to achieving gender equality and the empowerment of women. For example, during the November 2018 training, participants discussed appropriate entry points and brainstormed on specific actions they could take to mainstream gender into project outputs.  For example, it was suggested that online platforms for forest monitoring start to collect data on the sex of the users and consider steps to increase female access to these platforms.  Since November, a number of additional capacity building sessions on the Gender Marker Rating System have taken place and included an in-person training at UNDP offices in Bangkok and two webinars in early 2019, with the goal of reaching UN-REDD colleagues based in the various locations.

The UN-REDD Gender Marker Rating System has allowed the UN-REDD team to establish a baseline and to systematically track and monitor the gender responsiveness of the Programme’s outputs. A baseline survey showed that 24% of the outputs are already gender-responsive. With the established target set to increase that level to at least 50% over the next two years, it is key that UN-REDD staff has the capacity both on gender mainstreaming and on the use of the Gender Marker Rating System and is committed to working together to achieve this goal. The capacity building sessions have helped to raise awareness, support and confidence within the Team on gender, including in developing gender-specific actions for the 2019 workplan. Moving forward, UN-REDD remains actively dedicated to implementing a range of actions to ensure gender is fully integrated into support provided by the Programme.

Gender marker infographic

 

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Elizabeth Eggerts is a Gender and REDD+ Specialist and UN-REDD gender focal point at UNDP.

Amanda Bradley is a REDD+ Tenure Specialist and UN-REDD gender focal point at FAO. 

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