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National Gender Machinery Institutions cerebrate the progress made on ‘Advancing and Sustaining Gender Equality Gains in Rwanda’ joint project

Kigali, 5 October 2018-The cerebration of the joint program’s key achievement was held on Friday, 5th October 2018 at Park Inn Hotel and attended by Government institutions, UN Agencies private sector, NGOs, civil society and faith based organizations.

The 5-year  program was funded by the Government of Sweden through the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) and implemented by the National Gender Machinery institutions represented by the Ministry of Gender and Family Promotion (MIGEPROF), the Gender Monitoring Office (GMO), the National Women’s Council (NWC), the Rwanda Women Parliamentary Forum (FFRP) through ONE UN in Rwanda, represented by the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women(UN Women), the  United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) at a tune cost of USD 6, 818, 40.

Speaking as the cerebration of the key achievements, The Minister of Gender and Family Promotion Honorable Nyirasafari Espérance greeted the Swedish Government which through the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency continues to support advance and sustain gender equality gains in Rwanda adding that the program that among other achievements played a role in enhancing NGM institutional capacity building.

‘The Joint Program came at a time when MIGEPROF was still very new and at a time when other National Gender Machinery institutions were experiencing various capacity gaps. Since its launch, the program embarked on supporting and strengthening various National Gender Machinery institutions through capacity building initiatives and as a result, we can, today, proudly say that a strong foundation for the National Gender Machinery institutions has been laid down and ready to encounter new sector emerging challenges.’-Noted Honorable Nyirasafari

The Minister added that the Joint Programme has significantly improved coordination of the National Gender Machinery, mind-set change and awareness raising on Gender Equality, accountability and oversight, Women leadership participation; and women economic empowerment.

The Swedish Ambassador to Rwanda Ms. Jenny Ohlsson during her remarks said: ’Gender Equality is a top priority in Sweden and we have a feminist policy. Rwanda and Sweden share the same strategic vision of promoting gender equality in all spheres and the two countries are always back to back in promotion of Gender Equality according to the international ratings.’

The UN Women Country Representative Ms. Fatou Lo said: ‘It is a program that has achieved a lot and we really believe that what has been achieved over the last 5 years can be leveraged to really advance Gender Equality in Rwanda.  We are all happy of the programme's contribution towards transforming the lives of beneficiaries and the entire community at large, translating to more dignified life.’

In regard to mindset change on gender equality issues, men engage approach was strengthened through #HeForShe outreach campaigns and other home grown initiatives like Umugoroba w’Ababyeyi.

Munyana Maximilien Audace, a motorcyclist based in Kigali witnessed how he now understands well the #MenEngage approach due to the joint program: ‘I know #He4She global campaign after being trained by MIGEPROF and I have already signed (smiling). We motorcyclist play a role in fighting GBV by reporting on time any case we come across. If you remember well, a colleague motorcyclist was rewarded for reporting a human trafficking case.’

As part of the joint program implementation, the women empowerment flagship of the program improved living conditions of vulnerable women and girls including former street vendors and teen mothers through earnings generated from startup capital as well as trainings in entrepreneurship, mentorship and leadership that were provided. It also helped in planning and implementing the Gender Budget statement, and the Gender Management Information System (GMIS) was developed to further enhance generation of sex disaggregated data and information to enhance evidence-based planning and decision making hence resulting in improved gender responsiveness of electoral processes and women participation in elections whereby 326 women were registered as candidates in 2018 parliamentarian elections leading to 61% of women representation in the parliament.