Creating Sustainable Change through Muungano Gender Forum
4 min read
ISF has focused on creating sustainable change through the Muungano Gender Forum. The project has now been evaluated by external consultants.
Muungano Gender Forum (MGF) was established in September 2018 to provide a conducive environment for promoting gender equality among stakeholders in Kisii and Nyamira counties. Over the years, the forum has expanded since stakeholders working in the project areas, as well as county government, have recognized its benefits.
The evaluation noted the impact of the forum in fostering Kisii and Nyamira counties collaborations. The development partners of both counties have been more involved in county planning and activities. The county collaborations have led to enhanced, effective, and harmonized coordination among stakeholders to address gender inequality in key sectors of Kisii and Nyamira counties. The forum has gained increasing visibility due to continued growth and increased attendance.
However, the forum has also faced challenges due to push back from patriarchate who view the project as a threat towards traditions such as FGM and domestic violence as an accepted part of marriage. Long-standing traditions and patriarchal gender norms do not wear off easily. The politicians who attend the forum at times also carry anterior motives of pushing their own political agendas.
To address these issues ISF has focused on creating sustainable change through the Muungano Gender Forum. Nurturing overall continuity and change-makers passing on knowledge to their communities is vital. ISF has also identified the need for grassroot forums through MGF. It is important to engage local administration (chiefs, village elders, religious leaders etc.) to promote gender equality through the introduction of Nyamira grassroot forums.
Ensuring male involvement is also crucial in challenging patriarchal gender norms. ISF has focused on creating generational change to achieve long-term change in society. Paradigm shift is possible when the youth is educated about gender equality challenges and can further pass their knowledge to their future families.
Creating sustainable change that is rooted in society is the foundation of ISF and Muungano Gender Forum.