This year’s Women Deliver theme, “power,” brought into focus the undeniable shift in public discourse around gender equality and parity. In the last year, we have watched — in real-time — as aid organizations grapple with a myriad of gender-based abuses in their global programming and in the structural systems of their own institutions.
Within development communications, communicating about gender has had its own evolution: dialogue about what a gender transformative approach to development might look like, the inclusion of men and boys in existing dialogue around gender, and a growing global reckoning in the wake of #MeToo.
I was curious to know how development communicators were adapting to the shifts and how the current trends within the public discourse were impacting their work. During a recent On Message digital event, I spoke to communication experts Sarah Lagot Odwong and Susan Krenn.
Highlights from this 30-minute digital event include:
• An overview of what’s changed in gender communications — #MeToo and other pivotal moments in the gender dialogue with the aid sector.
• How to be intentional about checking our own value systems while designing initiatives.
• How to frame internal conversations about the intersectionality of gender in the environments in which it exists: poverty, patriarchy, etc.
• Ways to examine how specific practices within the aid sector can drive or hinder inclusive participation, how to ask the right questions for the communities we serve, and how to work towards programming that’s “fit to purpose.”
Speakers: Sarah Lagot Odwong, communications specialist, Safety4Sisters; Susan Krenn, executive director, Johns Hopkins Center for Communication Programs
Moderator: Carine Umuhumuza, associate director of communications, Devex
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