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Bridging the Gap

Fao's Programme for Gender Equality in agriculture and rural development







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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Economic inclusion and social protection to reduce poverty
    Addressing gender inequalities to mitigate the economic and social impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in rural areas
    2020
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    The COVID-19 pandemic has affected nearly every rural household, with particularly serious effects on the most vulnerable. Mobility restrictions have disrupted livelihoods, while the economic downturn has pushed disadvantaged and vulnerable groups deeper into poverty, creating “new poor” and exacerbating gender and social inequalities. Women and girls have been disproportionally affected, due to existing gender inequalities, including inequitable access to and control over resources and services. School closures, elderly care and overwhelmed health services have increased the demands on women for unpaid care work. Across Europe and Central Asia, the time women spend on unpaid care and domestic work has risen due to lockdown measures, to 3.2 activities per woman versus 2.3 activities per man.
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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    International Mountain Day 2022
    Women move mountains
    2022
    Women move mountains is the theme of this year's International Mountain Day on 11 December 2022. Women play a key role in environmental protection and social and economic development in mountain areas. They are often the primary managers of mountain resources, guardians of biodiversity, keepers of traditional knowledge, custodians of local culture and experts in traditional medicine. Increasing climate variability, coupled with a lack of investment in mountain agriculture and rural development, has often pushed men to migrate elsewhere in search of alternative livelihoods. Women have therefore taken on many tasks formerly done by men, yet mountain women are often invisible due to a lack of decision-making power and unequal access to resources. As farmers, market sellers, businesswomen, artisans, entrepreneurs and community leaders, mountain women and girls, in particular in rural areas, have the potential to be major agents of change. When rural women have access to resources, services and opportunities, they become a driving force against hunger, malnutrition and rural poverty and are active in the development of mountain economies. To trigger real change towards sustainable development, it is important to engage in gender transformative change. International Mountain Day 2022 is an opportunity raise awareness about the need to empower mountain women so they can participate more effectively in decision-making processes and have more control over productive resources. By sharing excellence, opportunities and capacity development in mountains, the Day can promote gender equality and therefore contribute to improve social justice, livelihoods and resilience.
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    Booklet
    Gendered impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on food security, agricultural production, income and family relations in rural areas of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan
    Working Paper, 76
    2024
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    Globally, the COVID-19 pandemic and associated containment measures implemented to control the spread of the virus have exacerbated existing gender inequalities. This paper explores changes in agriculture, food security, nutrition, and family dynamics in the rural areas of Central Asia – specifically, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan – during the pandemic, focusing on women and men. Employing a mixed-methods approach that combines quantitative and qualitative analyses, the findings reveal that rural women were disproportionally affected due to pre-existing gender disparities and limited decision-making power. Women experienced compounded challenges, including increased unpaid work, additional agricultural labour and household chores, difficulties associated with online schooling and healthcare management, limited access to agricultural resources, and a higher risk of domestic violence. The pandemic heightened women’s vulnerability to food insecurity, whereas Central Asian governments’ interventions failed to support all women effectively. The paper concludes with policy recommendations to guide future policymaking, aiming to mitigate shocks and stressors and develop gender-responsive actions that empower rural women and men. These recommendations focus on improving food security and overall well-being in the rural regions of Central Asia, recognizing and addressing the distinct challenges women faced during the pandemic.

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