UNDP focuses on gender equality and women’s empowerment not only as human rights, but also because they are a pathway to achieving the Millennium Development Goals and sustainable development.
Gender equality is also emphasized throughout the portfolios, and specific activities such as a gender audit for the UNDP office and gender mapping of NGOs have been undertaken. The focus of the office on gender equality has been on the community based women’s income generation projects, youth empowerment projects, amendments of laws, capacity building of NGOs, and increasing women’s participation. These have had a positive impact on women’s lives in the communities. A project on Lebanese women’s right to nationality was launched towards the end of 2008. Several awareness-raising activities with business and religious leaders – both men and women – on HIV AIDS were also conducted in 2008.
Gender Equality Partnerships have focused on communities, municipalities, Ministry of Interior and municipalities, Ministry of Justice Prime Minister’s office, and the Ministry of Social Affairs.
UNDP Lebanon coordinates national efforts to integrate gender equality and women’s empowerment into social and local development, democratic governance, crisis prevention and recovery, and environment and Energy. Through our local and regional network, we work to ensure that women have a real voice in all governance institutions, from the judiciary to the civil service, as well as in the private sector and civil society, so they can participate equally with men in public dialogue and decision-making and influence the decisions that will determine the future of their families and countries.
Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
3rd Goal: Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women
Gender equality is a social order in which women and men share the same opportunities, rights, obligations and duties. One of Lebanon’s most remarkable accomplishments- in terms of the strife for gender equality- is the achievement of gender equality in primary, middle and secondary school levels. Despite improvements in the health and education conditions of women, considerable discrepancies exist between male and female participation in economic and political activities. Parliamentary seats held by women in Lebanon dropped to 3.2 % in 2009 (4 out of 128), the same humble situation is applicable to speaking of cabinet positions.