What you need to know:
- Civil Societies Organizations in Isiolo and Marsabit have decried gender inequality, limited resources and patriarchy in the climate change adaptation.
- Myriads of obstacles bar women from being in the lead of the climate change issues.
- Women’s coping mechanisms and recovery from the after-shocks of climate change are relatively aggravated by their vulnerabilities to many disasters.
Civil Societies Organizations (CSOs) in Isiolo and Marsabit have decried gender inequality, limited resources and all-pervading patriarchy in the climate change adaptation and mitigation processes in the two counties.
Speaking during a workshop at Marsabit town on recently, the CSO leaders lamented myriads of challenges in their quest for seeing through level-headed policy-making processes that take into account both women and men’s welfare also known as gender mainstreaming.
Isiolo Voice of Women Network Vice-Chairperson Elizabeth Ibrahim decried myriads of obstacles barring women from being in the lead of the climate change issues which she largely attributed to the all-pervasive patriarchal nature of the pastoralist communities.
“We call for inclusion of women in the climate change and land use policy formulations and debates to help both women and men in realizing our end-games in these critical issues that affect women even more,” Ms Ibrahim said.
She explained that women’s coping mechanisms and recovery from the after-shocks of climate change were relatively aggravated by their vulnerabilities to many disasters.
She cited that when droughts strike in the regions its women and children who are hit by the food insecurity, water scarcity and malnutrition crises.
Her sentiments were echoed by her Marsabit counterpart, the Indigenous Resource Management Organization (Iremo) CEO Eva Darare, who added that women in the two regions often have less access than men, to the resources and information needed to successfully push for the climate change and adaptation agenda.
Ms Darare observed that women play important roles in disaster reduction, often informally, through participating in disaster management and acting as agents of social change.
High illiteracy level
She held that women are also more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change as they rely more on natural resources, and in particular on agriculture, to secure their livelihoods.
Ms Darare lamented that most women are less able - than men - to access the relevant information and skills to manage the impacts of climate change and related disasters due to the high illiteracy levels in the county.
She held that the pastoralist culture and society is mostly considered by different forms of biases based on patriarchy – and is a crosscutting factor in all socio-economic aspects.
Programme Manager of Pastoralist Capacity Development Programme (Pacdep) an Isiolo-based NGO Abdulaziz Jama pointed out that limited budgetary allocation to climate change and adaptation policies, and land use in the county governments’ budgetary allocations was an impediment.
He emphasized the need of multi-sectoral approaches and tightening relations of the multi-stakeholder platforms to realise their goals.
“Unity with purpose for all stakeholders and the devolved units in these two regions to create an enabling environment for economic empowerment,” Mr Jama said.
He asked Isiolo and Marsabit county governments to fast-track the two per cent budgetary allocation to the climate change adaptation programmes as agreed upon by the stakeholders.