In view of the critical need to ensure that national REDD-plus strategies address social safeguards, particularly the recognition of the rights and interests of women and other vulnerable groups, IUCN, in collaboration with The Women’s Environment and Development Organisation (WEDO) facilitated a five-day engagement with key stakeholders on the mainstreaming of gender considerations in REDD-plus policy making in Accra from 5th – 9th September, 2011.
The first three days were devoted to the training of gender officers from key government Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) and Metropolitan Municipal District Assemblies (MMDAs) as well as representatives from traditional authorities/communities, civil society and women organizations working in the Environment and the Forestry sector. The workshop took participants through a stepwise process in understanding climate change and its differentiated impacts on women and men, the ecological function of forests in relation to the carbon cycle, What REDD-plus is and the gender considerations needed for a successful regime, amongst others.
This training was followed by a two day workshop for policy level stakeholders which saw the participation of representatives from government, civil society and the media. The Honourable Minister for Environment, Science and Technology, Ms. Sherry Ayittey was the distinguished guest of honour at the event and delivered the keynote address. Participants were sensitized on the importance of acknowledging gender considerations in REDD+ owing to the fact that men and women relate differently to forest resources. Participants also identified the possible entry points for mainstreaming gender considerations in REDD+ processes in Ghana and brainstormed on the definition of a road map for achieving this.
The workshops were organized as part of activities under the on-going IUCN Pro-Poor REDD Project. Lorena Aguilar, Senior Gender Advisor at IUCN and Andrea Quesada, Programme Officer at WEDO were in Accra to lead in the facilitation of the workshops, with logistics and facilitation support from Participatory Development Associates (PDA) Ltd. For more information contact Saadia Bobtoya, the IUCN REDD Project Officer in Ghana at Saadia.Bobtoya@iucn.org