Ethnic minority women share experience in promoting socio-economic development

Friday, 2018-10-19 17:59:32
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Ethnic delegates at the seminar share their experience in promoting minority women’s potential for local socio-economic development. (Photo courtesy to UN Women)
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NDO – Over 100 delegates attended a dialogue held in Hanoi on October 19, to discuss good practices on gender mainstreaming in socio-economic development programmes in ethnic minority communities in Vietnam.

The event, co-organised by the Institute for Studies of Society, Economics and Environment (iSEE) and UN Women, with financial support from Irish Aid, offered a space to share and document challenges and successes in ensuring that ethnic minority women are engaged at every stage of the development and implementation of socio-economic development programmes in ethnic minority regions in the Southeast Asian country.

Discussions stemmed from the sharing of ethnic minority women on how they have become active agents of change in their own communities.

The focus of the dialogue was on the ways by which civil society can unite to ensure that socio-economic programmes in Vietnam, including the P135 poverty reduction programme, become more gender-responsive.

The good practices shared at the event presented how ethnic minority women are central drivers of change in their families and communities, helping highlight the importance of civil society organisations in bridging the gap between progressive policies and implementation.

Sam Thi Xinh, a member of the co-research team in Bac Kan province shared: “I am very happy because I learnt about my community’s issues myself, it didn’t come from outsiders. I have an opportunity to speak out based on real evidence.”

UN Women representative, Thuy Thi Nguyen said the event was a platform to unite in the shared goal of creating more space for ethnic minority women to have their voices heard and to hold the authorities accountable for their commitments made to substantive gender equality.

“We strongly believe in the internal capacities of ethnic minorities women. Our roles as a civil society organisation, are to stand by their side, give them trust and provide them with opportunities to exercise their agency and power. And we will continue doing so," said Luong Minh Ngoc, Director of iSEE.

The dialogue also aimed to raise awareness on the challenges and success stories experienced when aiming to ensure gender is mainstreamed in socioeconomic development programmes.