Regional Sharefair on Gender and Resilience to Recognize Young Innovators - African Business Magazine
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Regional Sharefair on Gender and Resilience to Recognize Young Innovators

Regional Sharefair on Gender and Resilience to Recognize Young Innovators

UN Women Regional Office for Eastern and Southern Africa in collaboration with IGAD, FAO, IFAD, AfDB, UNISDR among others will host a Regional Sharefair on Gender and Resilience on 9th and 10th November 2016 at the Safari Park Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya. The theme for the Sharefair is on Strengthening Resilience by Empowering Women. 

The Sharefair organizers have also announced ‘The Young Innovators in Agriculture Award’ which aims at recognizing cutting edge innovations in agriculture. The award aims at showcasing innovations that best provide solutions on how women and their communities can build and strengthen resilience through technologies and associated innovative strategies, projects, interventions and methods that can be expanded across Africa. 

Innovators under the age of 35 years are encouraged to share innovations at various stages including projects at a pilot, medium or advanced level that strengthen women’s and girls’ capacities to mitigate, adapt, recover and learn from shocks and stresses while achieving the longer term-goal to reduce vulnerability and increase well-being of women and communities. All submissions will be judged by an independent and credible external panel of experts with strong resilience programming experience. The winning innovator will receive USD 5,000, and USD 2,000 and USD 1,000 for the second and 3rd place respectively. An online catalogue of all innovations received will be created and available online to the public. In addition, the winners will be assisted to patent, scale up and commercialize their innovations.

Participants at the two-day conference will explore the role of women in building and strengthening resilience. The conference will also promote dialogue help and share experiences on gender-responsive resilience-related programmes and policies in Africa. It will also help accelerate development and humanitarian response towards the overall achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals on the continent.

According to UN Women’s Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa, Ms. Izeduwa Derex-Briggs, “Women play an important and active role in all aspects of disaster risk reduction, however, these roles are rarely recognized or included in structured formal systems. Public policy formulation and roll out should ensure that women and girls are not left out. By including women at all levels of society in resilience planning, we will deliver communities that will be able to quickly recover from manmade and natural emergencies.”

Ultimately the Sharefair will facilitate a long-term collaboration amongst regional stakeholders with the aim of identifying problems, adopting data and predictive methods, and mobilizing support and resources to incubate, accelerate, and scale effective solutions. The overall expected outcome will be the creation of a strong regional network to amplify gender resilience solutions beyond the event, thus sustaining change in policy and practice within relevant macro-economic frameworks.

Participants at the Sharefair will examine several issues as outlined below:

  •          Map out and illustrate the vulnerabilities and impacts that disasters have on women and girls, which compromise their resilience, while exploring available options for effective gender-sensitive disaster risk reduction and management.
  •          Show how migration due to disasters greatly impacts women and girl’ ability to thrive in their new settings, and examine how building resilience through effective gender-sensitive disaster risk reduction can help in rebuilding lives at a community’ original location to reduce the need for migration.
  •          Discuss how health challenges caused by disasters, affect women and girls thus disrupting their ability to quickly recover and delve into new and existing options to reduce health risks through gender-sensitive disaster risk reduction programming.
  •          Deliberate on the importance of a gender-sensitive approach to urbanization to reduce the negative impacts and review successful cases of gender-sensitive urbanization that have incorporated disaster risk reduction and management.

The UN system champions a resilience-based approach to a crisis where development support complements the humanitarian response. This allows for both approaches to supplement communities, and local institutions and services to cope with the adverse impacts of the crisis. This approach helps communities recover wherever possible, the basic qualities of life which are essential for human dignity and reconstruct their lives faster and better.

Distributed by APO on behalf of UN Women.

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