The Gender Monitoring Office together with its key partners from Thursday to Friday last week held a retreat in Rubavu District to discuss on programmatic delivery and internal mechanisms to drive the transformational journey at the institutional level.
The two-day retreat brought together all GMO staff and representatives of different development partners, Civil Society Organizations and other stakeholder institutions. These include among others the Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion, UNWOMEN, UNDP, Action Aid, Care International, UNICEF, Rwanda Religious Leaders Forum, Commission Episcopale pour la Pastorale des Jeunes and Pro-femmes Twese Hamwe.
Partners’ support Commended
Opening the Retreat, the Chief Gender Monitor Rose Rwabuhihi strongly commended GMO key partners in helping the Office to continuously deliver on its mandate of promoting the gender accountability at all levels. She also hailed their efforts and commitments in advancing the gender agenda in Rwanda.
‘‘Today we are here as GMO to reflect on our work as institution towards delivering on our mandate. We thank you for your support in the journey of promoting gender accountability. Our Office has a huge mandate which cannot be achieved without your endless support,’’ said the Chief Gender Monitor.
‘‘Our Office is committed to continue working with you to ensure men and women enjoy equal rights and opportunities,’’ she said adding that Rwanda has what to build on in regards to promotion of gender equality.
Generally the two days of the retreat were a good opportunity for the institutional self evaluation and setting up strategies for further delivery and how the Office can overcome some of the challenges that it faces in daily service delivery.
Messages by some Partners
During the retreat, partners also got the opportunity to express their views on the existing partnership and how it can be strengthened.
The Resident Representative at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Mr. Stephen Rodriques said: ‘‘Women and men have born equal, they must enjoy equal opportunity.''
‘‘Promoting Gender Equality is not something deliberate. It is rather a fundamental Human right commitment. We have to synergize to ensure we effectively deliver on this commitment,’’ he added.
The country Director of Action Aid, Josephine Uwamariya said: ‘‘as the civil society, our contribution should include raising awareness to show the community that Gender Equality is not a myth, rather a reality. As Action Aid, we will ensure we continue to contribute to this journey.’’
Uwantege Carine of the UN Women said: ‘‘we have to do more accountability dialogues at different levels of specific service delivery including Media and Faith Based Organizations to increase gender accountability.
The Retreat took the following resolutions:
Collaborate with accountability institutions in terms of coordination and information sharing for effective service delivery;
Conduct in joint with partners more gender oriented dialogues that are not only targeted to the community, rather they should be engagement of different stakeholders at both central and local levels to ensure mindset change, and these dialogues should be oriented to specific service delivery sectors (media, FBOs, CSOs, etc.);
Ensure enforcement of implementation of guidelines on capacity development of institutions on gender equality;
Strengthen communication on Gender Equality promotion and the issue of GBV in terms of contents/messaging through different communication channels including ICT existing opportunities;
Develop and share basic and targeted gender mainstreaming and monitoring tools to be used by different stakeholders in their efforts to contributing to influence planning, implementation and reporting;
Conduct regular gender oriented assessments to leverage qualitative impact of gender equality and equity, as well as communicate and disseminate documented findings for gender evidence based advocacy;
Strengthen engagement with media and academia for the promotion of gender equality and awareness raising;
Scale up the gender equality champions in various sectors (CSOs, FBOs, Public and Private Sectors, etc.);
Convene national and international conference on Gender Equality for experience sharing and awareness raising.