July 21, 2016

New Partnerships to Support Gender Equality

Written by World Learning

This post originally appeared on Medium.

The traditional donor-recipient relationship is a one-way street, in which donors provide funds for specific programs with a particular set of conditions. However, that model is evolving into a more collaborative partnership through which donors and recipients work together to assess needs, develop goals, and implement programs.

“We don’t call it donors anymore,” said Aldijana Sisic, chief of the United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence against Women of UN Women. “We call it partners.”

Sisic was part of a recent panel discussion focused on the changing role of donors in funding programs to support gender equitable empowerment, which closed FHI360’s Gender 360 Summit in Washington, DC. The conference focused on engaging adolescent girls and boys in achieving gender equality and combating gender-based violence.

“It’s a much bigger process in building the relationship in which we all understand what our common ground is and our goal,” she later added.

World Learning CEO Donald Steinberg led the discussion and in addition to Sisic, was joined by representatives from preeminent funding organizations and agencies from around the world, including Susan Markham, senior coordinator for Gender Equality & Female Empowerment at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID); Rebecca Terzeon, coordinator for Gender & Women at the U.K. Department for International Development (DFID); Bill Costello, minister-counsellor for the International Development Branch at the Embassy of Australia in Washington, DC; and Musimbi Kanyoro, president and CEO of the Global Fund for Women.

Women’s and girls’ empowerment is a growing topic of interest , underscored by the launch of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals this past fall. One of its major goals focuses on gender equality and aims to eliminate violence and discrimination against women, ensure women’s full and effective participation in leadership roles, and provide equal rights for women worldwide by 2030.

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