Winrock has been a recognized leader in fostering women’s empowerment and gender equality since 1989, when it launched the African Women Leaders in Agriculture and Environment (AWLAETM) program to recognize and promote women’s role in agriculture.  Winrock’s efforts in gender integration and women’s empowerment in agriculture and other areas have positioned it as a leader in the field.  Gender equality is also a critical component of Winrock’s commitment to diversity and equal opportunity as an organization.

Winrock recognizes that all genders, adults and children, experience poverty and development differently, based on prevailing social norms and unequal access to resources and opportunities. Gender-based constraints limit the freedom of individuals of all genders to fully exercise their rights and realize their full potential in societies and institutions. Development challenges require solutions that address gender-based constraints and create an inclusive enabling environment for all individuals and communities to contribute to and benefit from development.

Winrock is committed to analyzing gender differences in its programs and creating equitable opportunities for all genders, adults and children, to overcome barriers, contribute to their communities’ development, and realize their full rights and potential.

Winrock also is committed to implementing institutional practices that create equal opportunities for men and women in its work around the globe, and to providing staff with the awareness, knowledge, and tools necessary to implement this policy.

To establish this commitment, Winrock will strive to:

Key Definitions

Gender: The socially constructed roles and responsibilities assigned to males, females, or others in a given culture or location. Ideas about gender are learned and can change over time, and often intersect with other factors such as race, class, age, and sexual orientation.

Sex: The biological differences between males, females, and others especially as differentiated based on reproductive functions. Sex is based on biology, not culture.

Female empowerment is achieved when women and girls acquire the power to act freely, exercise their rights, and fulfill their potential as full and equal members of society. While empowerment often comes from within, and individuals empower themselves, cultures, societies, and institutions create conditions that facilitate or undermine the possibilities for empowerment.

Gender equality: The state or condition that affords all genders equal enjoyment of human rights, socially valued goods, opportunities, and resources. Genuine equality means more than parity in numbers or laws on the books; it means expanded freedoms and improved overall quality of life for all people.

Gender integration: Systematically identifying, and then addressing, gender inequalities during strategy and project design, implementation, and monitoring and evaluation.

Gender justice: The protection and promotion of civil, political, economic and social rights on the basis of gender equality.

Gender sensitive: The ability to acknowledge and highlight gender differences, issues and inequalities to address them in strategies and actions.

LGBT: An acronym for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. There are many other variations on this acronym that are used in different contexts, including, for example, LGBTI, which adds a reference to intersex people; LGBTIQ, which adds a reference to queer and questioning; and LGBTIQA, which adds a reference to asexuals and allies.

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