When reviewing project proposals by civil society organisations applying for development funding, the EU pays great deal of attention to the so-called added-value elements: promotion of gender equality and equal opportunities among them. Thus, we think it is important for Belarusian CSOs to understand what the value-added elements are and how to incorporate them when putting a project idea on paper.
Within our EU-Belarus Task Force, we organised a seminar for over 20 representatives of Belarusian CSOs on how to consider gender aspect while implementing their projects. The event took place on June 26 in Minsk and gathered organisations with very different view on the issue of gender balance and equal opportunities. To help Belarusian organisations discover what added value the gender analysis can provide for their projects, ODB invited Irina Alkhovka, chairperson of the NGO “Gender Perspectives” and the leading expert in gender issues in Belarus to lead the seminar ‘Considering gender aspect while preparing a project proposal’.
In view of the participants, all is clear when gender is the focus of the project but when organisations attempt to address the gender balance issue in projects that do not specifically target men and women, questions pop up.
The participants were presented an overview of the existing EU and Belarusian gender policies, tips how to make a project attractive for their target audience, as well as a list of gender indicators to verify the level of gender blindness and/or gender sensitivity. Mrs Alkhovka presented bright examples of how considering or disregarding gender aspect can influence the project results.
The training participants exercised in developing gender component on case-based examples and had a chance to receive comments by the expert related to their own project ideas.
A mini-survey made at the end of the event showed that majority of organisations are willing to use gender analysis when developing their project proposals and working with their direct target groups. Moreover, many voiced their opinion that having come to the seminar mainly because of the standard donor requirements on the “gender paragraph”, they discovered how important it was to consider gender differences in achieving project results and making them sustainable.
The event is part of the EU-Belarus Task Force programme run by ODB and supported by SIDA.
For the event's photo-gallery, please visit this link.
Presentation by Irina Alkhovka can be found here (in Russian).
A list of indicators (questions) the organisations should ask themselves to check if their project is gender sensitive or gender blind can be found here (in Russian).