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“Gender participation in community projects” conferences started under Second Rural Investment Project (North-West zone)

5-03-2013, 16:11, Saw: 328

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Second Rural Investment Project organized regional conference on “Gender Participation in Community Projects” in Barda town of North-West zone on March 04, 2013. The conference was attended by community members and municipal representatives of Arabachilar, Korpusindiran, Mirzajafarli, Iravanli, Gapanli, Borsunlu, Kabirli, Khoruzlu, Garadaghli, Sarov, Khinali, Mollajalilli and other partner communities. This conference was Second Rural Investment Project’s contribution to the activities carried out to improve and expand women rights in the country. AzRIP-2 Deputy Director and Community Development/Capacity Enhancement Manager Gulbaniz Ganbarova and North-West zone Program Specialist Khudayar Gulmaliyev made speeches that covered information about the responsibilities of women and men in social development processes, and gender equality that regulates balance in the rights, obligations and activities of women and men. Speakers also mentioned AzRIP’s sensitivity in this sphere as one of the main targets of AzRIP strategy is to achieve enhanced women participation in the implementation of community projects. G. Ganbarova emphasized the importance of participation which needs to be main point of focus. AzRIP Project Assistance Team Leader Kamala Aghayeva made presentation on “Gender participation in AzRIP operational zones”. Information provided about the women’s and men’s rights, responsibilities and activities, gender, gender and sex, gender equality was reinforced by interactive exercises attended by participants. The presentation covered detailed information about women participation in mobilization, training, cross visits, community networking, opening ceremonies of completed projects and in other activities. Here the presenter talked about women leaders in the economic zones that AzRIP collaborates with, about participation, community group reinforcement, information dissemination, training and capacity building, collaboration with women in neighboring communities, high level arrangement of community driven ceremonies etc. It also presented women’s role and achievements in the involvement of vulnerable groups and participatory approach, their solidarity during problem selection, planning the community project, proper development of project proposal and budget, participation in project presentation, community fund and its expansion, adjusting in-kind contribution to community’s internal resources and in other similar processes. K. Aghayeva underlined that number of women participants was 6060 out of total 18536 people in 92 mobilization workshops held in North zone, 6909 out of 20871 participants in 95 mobilization workshops in North-West zone and 3565 out of 13510 participants in mobilization workshops held in Nakhchivan zone. Consequently, total number of women participants was 16531 out of 52917 people.

Project staff Telli Ibadova, Nurlan Aghayev, Bakhtiyar Sadigov and Elnara Garakhanova facilitated group works in simultaneous groups on “The role of women in family and community development” and “The role of men in family and community development”. Both group works covered issues related with gender that includes and assesses biological (difference in parts of body, physical difference of biological functions) and sociological (position and role of women and men in community and society) differences, inter-gender relations in the society, as well as the role and responsibilities of men and women in society and some other issues. Participants of parallel groups mentioned that though women and men operate in various areas in the society, it is important to have good relations between them in their social and domestic spheres, dependence of both genders from each-other and ensuring balance between both genders in terms of their dependence and joint participation in the development of society.

Presentation of group works in plenary was made by Sakhavat Mammadova (CG member in Khoruzlu community, Tartar rayon), Bahar Abbasova (Deputy CG leader in Korpusindiran community, Barda rayon), Zakir Bayramov (CG member and Municipal chairman in Kebirli community, Tartar rayon) and Ahliman Allahverdiyev (CG leader in Korpusindiran community, Barda rayon). Presentations covered broad information about the roles of women and men in community development and family and it was emphasized that women participation is critical in making decisions on women-related issues and some problems and project should be considered only by women. Presentations emphasized that it is important to focus on the factors that make gender issues important to community development. These factors include: the role of women in child rearing, importance of women’s duties in household management, and participation of women in some specific protection actions (family planning, woman health, work with teenager girls etc.).

After the lunch, participants were distributed cards as part of the exercise “Who is more important?” where men wrote their ideas about women separately and women wrote their ideas about men. Results of the exercise were presented in plenary that were very interesting for all and concluded that both genders depend on one-another, this dependence and joint participation in the development of society has to be equally balanced for both sides, otherwise it will result in misbalance and unorganized situation in the family or community. During the discussions it was mentioned that some actions are taken to provide equal opportunities for women and men by eliminating certain types of inequality in order to reinforce national mechanisms in many countries, as well as in Azerbaijan. Some community members including Vafa Aliyeva (CG leader in Arabachilar community, Barda rayon), Sabir Aliyev (CG leader in Irevanli community, Tartar rayon), Kamala Humbatova (Gapanli CG leader), Konul Mahmudova (CG Leader, Ismayilbeyli), Tarana Khalilova (CG member, Garadaghli community, Goranboy rayon), Zeynab Hasanova (CG member, Ashagy Balligaya), Ismayil Orujov (CG leader, Mollajalilli community, Goygol rayon) took an active part in the discussions.

Initiative about creating favorable condition and opportunity for continual use of women resources was appraised by all participants in the feedback and suggestions section.

G. Ganbarova made a closing speech after the evaluation session.

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