Australia and UNDP Announce Partnership to Support Gender Equality in Mauritius…

The Australian Government will support the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Mauritius to implement projects in collaboration with Stakeholders to strengthen responses to gender-based violence, promote gender equality and achieve the Sustainable Development Goals.  

The new partnership was signed by HE Ms Jenny Dee, Australian High Commissioner and Ms Amanda Serumaga, UNDP Resident Representative at a ceremony held on 01 July 2020, [in the presence of the Hon Mrs Kalpana Devi Koonjoo-Shah, Minister of Gender Equality and Family Welfare, and Hon. MLP Anjela Speville, Chairperson of the Rodrigues Regional Assembly​].

Under the agreement, the Australian High Commission through its Direct Aid Program will provide funding towards the implementation of Pillar 1 (Component 2) of the UNDP Country Programme 2017-2020 on “Addressing Challenges to Gender Equality” with programmes aligned in achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Hon. Mrs Kalpana Devi Koonjoo-Shah, Minister of Gender Equality and Family Welfare laid emphasis on her firm belief that women and girls, everywhere, must have equal rights and opportunity, and be able to live free of violence and discrimination. She stressed on her unflinching determination as Minister of Gender Equality and Family Welfare to reduce all forms of discrimination towards women. In that context, she welcomed the sustained collaboration of International Partners, namely the UNDP and the Australian Embassy, to support her Ministry in its initiatives to achieving gender equality, especially at a juncture where financing of projects is really difficult due to budget limitations. She announced that she will be coming up shortly with a National Gender Policy to engender an all-inclusive legal, policy and administrative framework that will help promote gender equality and equity as an integral dimension of inclusive and sustainable development.

Mrs Spéville stated that the funding being allocated to the Rodrigues Regional Assembly is timely as it will contribute to launching the work of the SDG Committee. It is especially even more timely in the post Covid-19 context, where the strict lock-down measures have impacted in one way or the other on different socio-economic sectors, including tourism. She states, “In Rodrigues, we are proud of our local resources and aspire to building resilience as well as safeguarding our natural resources, livelihoods and empowering our social capital. We will calibrate our Covid-19 Responses to achieve the SDGs. Having baseline data, through the research to be conducted with the support of the UNDP and the Australian High Commission will, therefore, be of utmost importance in this endeavour.”

High Commissioner Dee said the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the challenges women face across economic, security, health and safety spheres.  “Australia is pleased to partner with UNDP working closely with the Mauritian Government at a time when there are increasing risks of gender-based violence as a result of the pandemic.”

Ms. Serumaga mentioned that UNDP engages itself to sustain its actions in Mauritius and Rodrigues to speed up Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment initiatives as the cornerstone of Sustainable Development. She states, “We need to speed-up our actions and align our resources towards targeted programmes for women’s empowerment and gender equality. This is especially significant in the post COVID-19 situation whereby our in-country analysis reveals that women will bear the brunt of the pandemic in a more disproportionate manner within the overall socio-economic landscape.”  

Posted by on Jul 2 2020. Filed under Actualités, Société. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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