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Gender Equality and Social Inclusion

Ensuring projects are designed and managed to promote gender equity and inclusion
Because women and men often use different strategies to improve the economic and physical well-being of their families, businesses, and communities, Chemonics works to ensure that its project activities are designed with an understanding of how and when gender-based differences may affect project impact. The experience of women and men are also shaped by other demographic and cultural factors such as age, geographic location, ethnic and religious identities, and socio-economic status. These identities affect individuals’ needs for, experience with, and access to social benefits and protections, which profoundly influence how to do best development work. We provide tools and strategies that support our staff, clients, and partner institutions in analyzing gender-based differences that — unless recognized and mitigated — can negatively affect project outcomes. Above all, Chemonics strives to advance gender equity and equality through our work around the world.

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With our commitment to gender mainstreaming, we integrate gender into a multitude of different sectors — from climate change to legislative reform to natural resource management. We understand the unique role that gender plays in human trafficking, disability, minority and vulnerable populations, and the, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, and we design and implement activities that respond to the needs of individuals in these groups.
Gender Analysis and Assessments: We use gender analysis and assessments to examine the roles, rights, and responsibilities of men and women and the obstacles, opportunities, and choices available to them in a given society and within a given sector. We work with donor groups, nongovernmental organizations, and government agencies working with gender issues, building on their successes and identifying gender-knowledgeable partners.
Institutional Audits and Policy Reform: We work with government and nongovernmental institutions to audit systems and services to ensure they are sensitive to gender and issues of concern to women and girls. Our analysis aims to ensure legal, educational, political, and economic equity in these institutions. Based on the audit, we recommend policy reform and improvements.
Integrating Gender into Broader Development Efforts: Gender is a crosscutting variable that Chemonics takes into account in all development sectors. The gender practice designs program interventions, monitoring and evaluation tools, and training, and maintains a reporting and communications system that disseminates lessons learned, good practices, and effective strategies to ensure that gender-based differences are considered in all types of development projects.
Land and Resource Rights: Women often face laws and practices that prevent them from owning or inheriting land. Secure tenure and resource rights can empower women to exert influence within households and take steps to protect their health, security, and dignity. Learn more about our cross-cutting work in land and resource rights.

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    Ariana Szepesi-ColmenaresAriana Szepesi-Colmenares is a manager with more than eight years of experience working on citizen security and democratic governance in Latin America and the Carinnbea. In her current role, supports new business efforts to design gender-sensitive projects that advance citizen security and democratic governance, in addition to serving as the gender focal point for projects in Latin America. Prior to Chemonics, Ms. Szepesi-Colmenares worked as a citizen security specialist, working closely with governmental institutions, civil society, and other partners. She has experience working in Argentina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, and Venezuela.Ms. Szepesi-Colmenares holds a master's degree in Latin American studies from Georgetown University and a master's in international relations and political sciences at Sciences PO Bordeaux in France. Read more

    Christy SiskoChristy Sisko is a program management and economic development specialist with experience in designing and implementing programs around financial services, women’s economic empowerment, investment, sector competitiveness and entrepreneurship. She has worked in in Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Moldova, Nigeria, South Sudan, Vietnam and Thailand. Ms. Sisko currently serves as a technical manager for the USAID Asia and Middle East Economic Growth Best Practice project overseeing implementation for activities related to gender-lens investing, equity investment in the MENA region and entrepreneurship. Previously, she served as manager of the Economic Growth and Trade Practice at Chemonics. Read more

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