DRH Gender Mainstreaming Workshop
Posted in FGM & Gender by Johanna Wesemann on July 24th, 2007
The DRH has been conducting a workshop on Gender Mainstreaming into the Health Sector, held in Limuru from May 28th to 31st 2007 with participation of high-level MOH decision makers. The workshop has been carried out with support of the GTZ special funds for Gender. The workshop report is about to be published.
Executive Summary of the report
The national policy and legislative environment in Kenya increasingly supports gender equality and empowerment of women. Key policy documents are, however, not yet engendered; despite the National Policy on Gender and Development having been passed, ministries still lack budgetary allocations for gender activities. As a result, development indicators are continuing to decline among women and girls compared to those of men and boys in the areas of HIV and AIDS, school enrolment and dropout, access to reproductive health information and services by adolescents and youth and harmful practices and unwanted pregnancies, family planning, life expectancy, infant and child mortality and maternal health.
To contribute to addressing and reversing this scenario, the Division of Reproductive Health (DRH), within the Ministry of Health is mandated to formulate reproductive health policies, guide and support delivery of quality reproductive health services by the districts, within the framework of the national Reproductive Health Services Strategic Plan (1997-2010). DRH has responded to this commitment by establishing gender mainstreaming structures, programs and activities. The Gender Mainstreaming Sensitization Workshop targeting Divisional Heads and Senior Programme Managers was among the first activity to be implemented at the Kenya Institute of Education in July 2006 and was expected to catalyze change and transformation in the Health Sector. The â€œGender Mainstreaming into Health Sector Sensitization Workshopâ€ is the second workshop and targeted senior policy makers of the MoH and senior staff from the Division of Reproductive Health and University of Nairobi.
DRH organized this four-day â€œGender Mainstreaming into Health Sector Sensitization Workshopâ€ for Senior Policy makers of the MoH, senior staff from the Divisions of RH, Immunization (KEPI), Health Promotion (DHP), Division of Nursing (DON), NASCOP-HIV/AIDS, HMIS, ICT, DRSRS and Child Health. The Nursing Council of Kenya (NCK), KMTC, and University of Nairobi also sent their representatives. A total of 25 participants attended the workshop. The workshop aimed to enhance participantsâ€™ understanding of gender concepts and the process of gender mainstreaming as an entry point to the wider gender mainstreaming in the Health Sector in the country. The workshop was implemented through a series of sessions in plenary and through group work and reports managed and coordinated by Consultants and facilitators.
The WHO Gender Training Module, Gender Analysis Tool was used for identifying gender gaps, issues in the Health Sector, their causes and prioritizing them and developing responsive sustainable cost effective plans and activities. The process involved gender sensitive and responsive analysis, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation (M&E) and resource mobilization. The goal is to promote equity and equality of treatment and access to and control of resources and benefit by women and men. Also included was the gender responsive budgeting that requires budgets to clearly disaggregate its beneficiaries along clear engendered lines.
The facilitators pointed out the need for high level collaboration and coordination in gender mainstreaming, focus on advocacy and Behaviour Change Communication, political, social and economic commitments for gender mainstreaming, institutional capacity building and documentation of good practices in gender mainstreaming. Participatory evaluation of the workshop confirmed that the workshop objectives were achieved.
It was noted that DRH has taken an important step towards gender mainstreaming within its programmes but that this initiative needs to move to the MOH at the Headquarters in order to catalyze gender mainstreaming within all MOH programs and though a plan of activities roll down to the districts and communities. Participants further emphasized that an inter-sectoral gender working committee needs to be formed at the MOH headquarters to coordinate gender mainstreaming in all health programmes.