Gender mainstreaming and sexual and gender based violence training

Police and military officials, as well as civilians, were trained to support UN and AU peace operations.

This course provided military, police and civilian groups with foundational knowledge and skills to more effectively support the mandate of United Nations (UN) and African Union (AU) peace support operations on gender equality and sexual and gender based violence (SGBV) prevention and response.

The ISS’ Peace Operations and Peacebuilding division together with its African Centre for Peace and Security Training (ACPST) provided the training at the request of the Ethiopian government’s Peace Support Training Centre (PSTC). The training was provided under the umbrella of the memorandum of understanding signed between the ISS and the PSTC in April 2016.

The 26 trainees who attended the course comprised military, police and civilian participants from Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia and Malawi. The group was made of 14 women and 12 men, some of whom had experience in an AU/UN peacekeeping mission, while others had been cleared for deployment.

The interactive 10-day training course consisted of role-plays, case scenarios, brainstorming, group and individual presentations, and regular discussion sessions that built the confidence of participants. The curriculum covered the following key learning points:

  • Ability to conduct a gender analysis in a professional manner including in conflict and violent situations
  • Familiarity with the regulatory frameworks on gender equality, women’s rights and women’s empowerment
  • Ability to apply gender mainstreaming principles during mandate implementation in peace operations
  • Ability to implement gender mainstreaming in participants’ current work environment in a professional manner
  • Ability to analyse SGBV in a conflict environment
  • Ability to deal with SGBV in peace support operations
  • Ability to analyse SGBV in peace support operations
  • Ability to develop and implement preventive strategies to respond to SGBV

The course was delivered by a diverse team of experienced facilitators, namely: Riana Paneras (ISS), Meressa Kashu (ISS), Liezelle Kumalo (ISS), Tsion Abebe (ISS Consultant), Irene Limo (ACCORD), Hans-Petter Keilland (Norwegian Police), Tilahun Gebremedhin (PSTC) and Dr Elias Abirha (PSTC).

Overall, 73% of participants said their ability to analyse SGBV in violent conflict environments was ‘excellent’ as a result of the training. 58% said the same with regard to their ability to apply gender mainstreaming principles during peace operations, and 65% indicated that their capability to implement gender mainstreaming within their current work environment would be ‘excellent’.

‘This training is related with the reality of gender, especially in my country. We have poor investigation, poor women empowerment and lack of security, and all of this increases the gender violence,’ said one participant.

The course made a significant contribution to promoting gender sensitive policy and practice in peacekeeping and peace operations, as recommended by UN Resolution 1325 in 2000 and reflected in the AU’s Constitutive Act.

Picture: ©Jacqueline Cochrane/ISS

Development partners
The ISS is grateful for support from the following members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the Hanns Seidel Foundation and the governments of Australia, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the USA.
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