The women participating in GAPP successfully advocated that a portion of the 5% of municipal budgets that is designated by law for gender activities be used specifically to build women-led agricultural enterprises.
Maritza Bruno, one of the project participants, said she appreciated the practical training in how to make policy presentations before the local municipal councils. “We have already presented our first public policy, which was approved. And what we hope is that it now only stays on paper, but is put into action,” she said.
GAPP also worked with men in the communities, providing training that aimed to raise men’s awareness about gender rights and about existing gender inequalities, and include them in the actions needed to decrease these inequalities and to support their partners.
“Being a man isn’t, as they say, being a big shot, but understanding and seeking equality with your partner,” said Maximo Mejía, who participated in the trainings.
The next step for many of these women will be to start their own businesses, said María Juana Díaz, who works in the office of women in one of the municipalities.
“Before, women depended on a man to bring home everything for the household,” she said. “But now women are becoming independent and are starting to dedicate themselves to other projects, like cultivating crops in home gardens, which allows them to become self-reliant and have access to loans from cooperatives and rural credit unions.”
Originally published at www.huffingtonpost.com .