The EOWE programme shared a new series of three publications on the experiences and initial impact of the first round of gender-transformative household dialogues conducted in Kenya and Vietnam in 2017. The publications document the stories of men and women from different regions on their process of rethinking gender norms that limit women’s economic empowerment and gender equality in agricultural value chains and presents the programme’s key findings on the patterns of change.
The baseline studies of the EOWE programme show that the success of women in agribusiness is not only determined by the level of access to resources and business assets, but also by gendered-specific behaviour and roles, which influences women’s decision-making power and control around these resources and business assets. Tackling the inequalities that exist between men and women in many rural agricultural societies therefore also requires a change in the deeply entrenched gender norms that are at the root of these inequalities. As an entry point to reflect on and transform restrictive gender norms and power relations, the EOWE programme developed a contextualised Social and Behaviour Change Communication (SBCC) strategy in order to create more equal income and business opportunities and a socially enabling environment for women entrepreneurship in agricultural value chains.
The SBCC strategy consists of interventions at household and community level. At household level, the programme organises facilitated Household Dialogues among targeted family and/or community members to critically reflect and discuss on norms that prevent women from fully participating in and benefitting from economic activities. To ensure sustainability and scale of the positive behaviour change in the communities, influencers and opinion shapers, like elders, religious leaders and community leaders, are invited to participate in community dialogues, that inform the community about the activities and progress the programme is making. In addition, the programme organises SBCC interventions at the community level like commune festivals and radio shows, and encourages participants of the household dialogues to share their experiences with other members in the community.