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Hello everyone, great discussions going on and a great topic for discussions and to hear people's views on the topic. I am glad to give my little contribution. The topic "striving for transformative gender impacts" is best viewed from a collaborative point of view. I would like to give a case study of a project FAO implemented collaboration with Actionaid Kenya. The project “One voice against gender inequity: Addressing Gender inequalities in Food Security and Agriculture recovery in the Horn of Africa drought crisis” targeted mostly women groups in Mwingi and Kyuso wards. The women groups collaborated with youth groups to generate resource maps by use of GIS. The women understood where the health centres were located and the personnel in each health centre. They learned about the location of schools and the number of teachers in each school. They learned the location of water points and many other resources. In addition to this, the women and men in the targeted groups were also trained on the rights of women and human rights in general and understood both men and women had rights and that even women could be appointed to positions of leadership. The men confessed that the training helped them and they promised to support women candidates for elective positions and the women confessed that they were volunteering themselves for elective positions and they were campaigning freely to be elected without fear of being prejudiced or ostracized by the community.
The GIS resource maps helped the women to articulate their development needs with the county government such that the women took lead in discussing what they need the county government to do for them and not what the government should do for them. To me this is was very transformative that brings total transformation to the lives of rural women. The women partnered with the youth from their community who have embraced technology like GIS mapping, mobile technology and translated the information in language simpler for the women. Empowering the women and men in the community with information on development, statistical facts, accountability and leadership, their rights to make choices, training them on public speaking and how to articulate their development issues before policy makers and development actors and how to hold themselves and their leaders accountable and brings lasting transformative impact in our societies. Women can bring transformative impact in their homes and community if their minds are transformed and all limitations imposed on them by culture and traditions is lifted. This project helped me understand that information (empowering information) is power and is liberating and once women are organized into groups, have access to information and have support of men and youth, there is nothing that can stand in their way to transformative development.