Inclusive National Planning
National development strategies guide most development efforts, including those assisted by international partners. Sector plans do the same in distinct areas such as health, education and the environment. Both types constitute important entry points for advancing gender equality. But while most countries now have separate action plans for women’s advancement, far fewer have fully integrated women’s priorities across national and sector strategies.
UN Women brings a long history of experience in more than 60 countries to support the systematic integration of gender equality priorities in national and sector planning documents, their related budgets and mechanisms for accountability.
In Senegal, slow progress in advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment was largely attributed to the lack of policy commitments in an earlier national poverty reduction strategy. When it came time to develop a new strategy, the Government used a roadmap developed by the national women’s machinery through extensive consultations supported by UN Women and the UN Country Team. The roadmap guided the inclusion of gender equality across the strategy, as central to all development policies. The strategy makes direct links between gender equality, good governance, economic growth and social development, and establishes performance indicators for education, health, political participation and economic empowerment. Substantial new resources to promote gender equality will fund priorities such as programmes to stop gender-based violence and help implement the national equality strategy.
Through UN Women partnerships with Mozambique’s Ministry of Planning and Development and the Public Institute of Public Administration, most national and local institutions now have tools to formulate and execute gender-responsive plans and budgets. When work began to develop the latest national poverty reduction strategy, UN Women brought women’s demands, including those of rural women, into the process through a gender advocacy group. The strategy was subsequently adopted; it reflects concerns crucial to women in rural areas, such as enhanced access to land titles, agricultural extension support and financial services.
As part of the preparation of Viet Nam’s new national strategy to prevent and control HIV and AIDS, UN Women and UNAIDS helped the Ministry of Health convene consultations with civil society members, including groups of women living with HIV. One of the strategy’s guiding principles is that prevention and control must be rooted in full respect for human rights, with a focus on women and other vulnerable groups.