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GENDER AND FOOD SECURITY     Habiba Hassan Wassef, MD Nutrition and Health Policy in Development
ROAD MAP• Women of the Arab countries• Cultural and social factors that influence Gender and Food  Security (FS)• “Gender”...
Women in the Arab countries• Human Development Index values for Arab countries span the  whole range from the affluent to ...
The interplay between Islamic teachings and     inherited country specific cultural traditions• Gender equity in society i...
Food Chain ContinuumFork to Farm Consumers                                                               Health and well- ...
Women in the Food Chain Continuum• Food Value Chain (FVC) analysis shows that women are actors and  processors assuming se...
Food Security, ‘Growing healthy and well nourished      people’, and the New Nutrition Project• Changes taking place in th...
Habiba Hassan-Wassef           8Cumulated nutrition related risks throughout life
Food Security, ‘Growing healthy and well nourished  people’, and the New Nutrition Project (contd.)Women have a role to pl...
Measures to optimize women’s impact on FS,  health, nutrition and well being of peopleSome of the measures that have been ...
Research and policy implications• Further develop the FVC analysis methodology to  better serve FS objectives.• Draw on th...
Research and policy implications (contd.)• Investigate the existence of conflict of interest between  policies of concerne...
Women’s multiple and interdependent rolesare viewed as part of an indivisible “whole”Education                            ...
We need to go from mainstreaming of gender concerns… Education Social Political Economic Industry Health Agriculture Envir...
To programmes capable of addressinginterdependent gender issues in an integrated manner       Education       Social      ...
Women, the first providers of food security• By virtue of their responsibility for the prenatal   nutrition of the fetus, ...
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Session 3 b habiba hassan-wassef

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Transcript of "Session 3 b habiba hassan-wassef"

  1. 1. GENDER AND FOOD SECURITY Habiba Hassan Wassef, MD Nutrition and Health Policy in Development
  2. 2. ROAD MAP• Women of the Arab countries• Cultural and social factors that influence Gender and Food Security (FS)• “Gender” FS and nutrition roles across the Food Chain• How FS links with its declared objective of ‘growing healthy and well nourished people’• How FS concerns figure in strategies addressing nutritional problems of the 21st century• Optimizing women’s contribution to FS, health, nutrition and well being of people.• Research, and policy implications Habiba Hassan-Wassef 2
  3. 3. Women in the Arab countries• Human Development Index values for Arab countries span the whole range from the affluent to the least developed• Wide variation exist in the women’s demographic, social and economic indicators between countries and within the same country .• Wide variation also exists in access to basic infrastructure and quality social services• Commendable progress achieved in past decades, yet progress lags behind for access to assets, access to the labor market, political participation, maternal health, and child nutrition.• Country specific profiles of agrifood production systems and food security situation differ widely and so does the role of women’s contribution therein• Health status and educational levels for women vary widely Habiba Hassan-Wassef 3
  4. 4. The interplay between Islamic teachings and inherited country specific cultural traditions• Gender equity in society is promoted by both Islam and Christianity in the Arab region• Islam provides for equality in the rights, duties and responsibilities in financial and economic measures, in political participation, education, social capital, and in compensation for harm• Men do not have privileges over women• Women are not barred from public responsibilities that gives them authority over men• Inherited customs, traditions and social factors can be in conflict with Islamic teachings• Inherited traditions may impose a position of inferiority on women and deprive them of their rights (WHO Regional Consultation, 2004) Habiba Hassan-Wassef 4
  5. 5. Food Chain ContinuumFork to Farm Consumers Health and well- being of consumers Nutrition Processing Nutritional value / digestion / health impacts Safety Organoleptic impact Environment Safe, high-quality foods Preparation Storage / transport / retail Environment ProcessingProduction systems:Agriculture / Fisheries / Aquaculture Habiba Hassan-Wassef 5
  6. 6. Women in the Food Chain Continuum• Food Value Chain (FVC) analysis shows that women are actors and processors assuming several tasks at different levels and activity domains of the five areas covered in the FVC.• The holistic FVC methodology allows identification of women’s contribution to the Food Chain in areas that may not have been acknowledged before.• More updated information is needed on their exact contribution• Enhancing and supporting women’s inputs can represent important support to FS nutrition objectives since women are themselves the strongest link between FS, health and nutrition.• Given that women traditionally dominate the artisanal food production scene, FVC methodology helps them to cost their role in terms of time and effort, and to calculate the market price for the food produced (European funded research project, Egypt)• The FVC analysis draws attention to women’s contribution to the Habiba Hassan-Wassef 6 environmental and food safety aspects of FS
  7. 7. Food Security, ‘Growing healthy and well nourished people’, and the New Nutrition Project• Changes taking place in the profile of nutritional disorders, and in the current risks that impact on the nutritional status across the human life cycle introduce factors that affect the health/nutrition status other than food and nutrient deficiencies.• The New Nutrition Project of 2005 adds an environmental and a social dimension to the science of food and nutrition Habiba Hassan-Wassef 7
  8. 8. Habiba Hassan-Wassef 8Cumulated nutrition related risks throughout life
  9. 9. Food Security, ‘Growing healthy and well nourished people’, and the New Nutrition Project (contd.)Women have a role to play in the following list that contributes to the above FS objective:• Promotion of healthy lifestyles and physical activity; early childhood nutrition (1000 Days Initiative); feeding the elderly; coping with disruption of meals and meal times; correction of faulty food habits; how to cope with novel foods; the meaning of sustainable diets; combating the culture of consumerism; the policy of zero waste; food safety issues and protection from environmental pollution insults; encouraging home based food production; turning food heritage know how to income generation activities; and many more, are all areas where women can have a role to play, thus contributing to food security. Habiba Hassan-Wassef 9
  10. 10. Measures to optimize women’s impact on FS, health, nutrition and well being of peopleSome of the measures that have been identified:• Health of women and their families• Education of girls and literacy of women• Strategies that free extra time for women from household/ family tasks• Removing barriers to political participation, to entry into the labor force, and to advancement in public decision making posts.• Involving women in FS related technology transfer and capacity building activities• Draw on the positive aspects of the local culture Habiba Hassan-Wassef 10
  11. 11. Research and policy implications• Further develop the FVC analysis methodology to better serve FS objectives.• Draw on the wealth of recently produced studies, reports and recommendations to formulate policies for enhancing the gender role in FS.• Analysis of the causal web for the inter-related factors that have an impact on the FS role of women in the socio-cultural context of the Arab countries and use outcomes as a basis for policy/strategy formulation• Identify the education/training needs for professionals of the sectors involved in FS activities at all levels so as to better understand the role and contribution of other sectors towards realization of shared FS objectives Habiba Hassan-Wassef 11
  12. 12. Research and policy implications (contd.)• Investigate the existence of conflict of interest between policies of concerned sectors and Gender promoting FS/nutrition objectives and propose measures for policy harmonization and synergy creation among the various sectors. A good example is the policy on breast feeding• Identify capacity building needs and measures that can facilitate the adoption of a trans-sectoral integrated vision in policy formulation and in the design of integrated multidisciplinary programmes to support women’s contributions to FS/nutrition objectives.• To go beyond “mainstreaming of Gender concerns” and investigate the institutional reform implications for a trans-sectoral policy level coordination mechanism with power of decision on resource allocation based on the analysis of successful examples. Habiba Hassan-Wassef 12
  13. 13. Women’s multiple and interdependent rolesare viewed as part of an indivisible “whole”Education IndustrySocial HealthPolitical AgricultureEconomic Environment
  14. 14. We need to go from mainstreaming of gender concerns… Education Social Political Economic Industry Health Agriculture Environment
  15. 15. To programmes capable of addressinginterdependent gender issues in an integrated manner Education Social Political Economic Industry Health Agriculture Environment
  16. 16. Women, the first providers of food security• By virtue of their responsibility for the prenatal nutrition of the fetus, and• for producing the first food – mother’s milk , and• for abiding by the recommended 4-6 months of exclusive breast feeding,• women provide the cornerstone for a food secure foundation that will later guarantee optimal growth and development of the child into a healthy, socially active and productive adult who has a lower risk of diet related chronic non-communicable diseases. Habiba Hassan-Wassef 16
  17. 17. THANK YOU
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