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The Christian Relief and Development Association (CRDA) has demonstrated its commitment to
gender issues in the past through the establishment of structures such as the Gender working group,
which have carried out various activities. In order to strengthen the gender impact of all its work
and its member organizations CRDA decided to prepare a gender policy. The gender policy is
expected to promote the empowerment of women at programs and organizations levels, including its
Member organizations. The gender policy is developed in line to the strategic direction as defined in
CRDA’s vision and Mission statements.

The decision makers felt that a policy document, with guidelines, will assist CRDA’s staff in
translating the policy goals and principles into reality, thus contributing to the elimination of
discrimination and inequalities experienced by women.

CRDA’s Vision: Contribute to the alleviation of poverty by improving the socio-

economic condition of the poor in Ethiopia and Empowering them to bring about

CRDA’s Mission: Strengthen the capabilities of member agencies to help

disadvantaged communities and groups improve their standard of living and their
control over their own livelihoods on a sustainable basis.

The aim of CRDA’s gender policy is to make the organization and it’s programs gender
sensitive; as well as to assist its member organizations in ensuring their development programs
and projects are planned and implemented in a gender responsive manner. Including resource
allocation and organizational culture is gender sensitive.


The policy emphasizes the cross cutting nature of gender in all CRDA’s work and seeks to
mainstream gender within the organization and in all program efforts; as the policy also
seeks to assist CRDA in integrating gender equity goals and objectives into its entire
organizational processes and structures so that these goals become internalized and

The gender policy will assist CRDA to complement and strengthen the already recognized
importance of gender equity and equality for sustainable development within its member
organizations and development partners.


3.1 Gender Policy Goal

The gender policy goal is to contribute towards making CRDA gender sensitive organization
with gender responsive programs and projects as well as assist member organization become
stronger on addressing gender issues within their organizations and programs. In general the
overall goal of the policy is to:

 Integrate and establish gender equity concerns into CRDA and member organizations

 Improve capacity for planning, developing and implementing gender sensitive programs
and projects

 Seek and alter the subordinate position of women in all aspects and transform existing
gender relations within CRDA and member organizations

 Provide a gender sensitive environment for all CRDA staff.

3.2 Gender Policy Objectives

The general objectives of this policy are:

 To Institutionalize gender within CRDA and to assist members in institutionalizing

gender within their organization and program

 To build the capacity of CRDA’s staff and member organizations in the realization of
gender equality

Given below are the objectives for specific areas covered by the policy.

3.2.1 Organizational Objectives

Objectives related to Political Will:

 To ensure appropriate political commitment

 To implement the gender policy

Objectives related to Organization Culture

 To promote gender sensitivity among all staff

 To set goals towards creating a culture that is supportive of gender equity

Objectives related to organizational Commitment

 To allocate the necessary budget for gender mainstreaming

 To enact affirmative action policy

Objectives related to Technical Capacity

 To equip staff with the knowledge and skill needed for gender mainstreaming and for
making CRDA a gender sensitive organization

3.2.2 Program Objectives

 To ensure gender analysis at all levels of program cycle

 To encourage women’s participation at all level of projects
 To establish a monitoring and Evaluation system that measures the impact of program
on women


The policy objectives shall be achieved through the following strategies:

 Promoting a Gender Analytical Framework that ensures

gender is considered in aspects of programming

 Promoting appropriate education, sensitization and

awareness creation of management, program and support staff to address gender
concerns in their daily work, relations as well as in program/project implementation.

 Adopting explicit advocacy role in promoting gender


 Ensuring that implementation strategies are revised

according to information collected periodically on gender related impact


CRDA’s Gender audit, conducted to develop this policy, aimed at assessing the organizations’
Political will, Organizations’ culture, management’s commitment, and technical capacity. Based
on the result of the gender audit, the following organizational measures are proposed.

5.1 Political Will

Political will is demonstrated through actively implementing the Gender Policy and translating
the policy into practice at all levels. This will require the commitment of decision makers to

enact significant structural changes as well as to provide sufficient technical and financial

Program to integrate gender equity as one of its strategy has to be supported by adequate
institutional capacity and appropriate orientation of staff.

The following policy measures, therefore, need to be put in place:

 Providing the necessary technical and financial resources to translate gender into practice
at all levels

 Put in place a mechanism to regularly monitor the policy instruments and other
institutional measures adopted to achieve gender equity. The Committee should function
in such a way as to allow gender equality to be exercised regarding policy issues related
to staff administration.

 Mainstream gender equality in the recruitment of women as a guiding principle for the
achievement of a better balance in staff sex ratio, especially at senior management level.

 Include gender as criteria for evaluating staff competency in the Performance appraisal

 Mandate the Human Resources Management Section to prepare an annual work plan for
competence building of female staff in areas such as leadership, technical skills and

5.2 Organizational Culture

To build and sustain an organizational environment or culture that is supportive of “Gender

Equity” is the responsibility of all staff in general, and all section heads, and management team
members in particular, all staff members must therefore.

 Work towards eliminating women’s constraints to form networks, mobilize resources and
gain recognition for their contributions;

 Put in place clear norms and rules regarding equitable distribution of support services and
training opportunities to female and male staff.

 Challenge unwritten rules that discourage women to be assertive.

 Refrain from any comments or gestures that indicate a prejudicial view about women in
management positions as not being merit based.

 Understand the intent of the gender policy and other gender equity initiatives

 Set goal towards creating an organizational culture that is supportive of gender equity,
takes initiative to understand and implement the gender policy
 Appreciate and support female staff role as a mother (Some CRDA member organisations
have supportive policy for women).

5.3 Organizational Commitment

The following measures will be used to ensure commitment on gender equality issues within

 That all staff understands gender concepts and are aware of their roles and
responsibilities with regard to the implementation of the policy.

 Put in place a realistic system/mechanism is for the proper planning, monitoring and
implementation of the policy and reviewing of procedures to improve implementation
of the policy;

 Establishment of a structure to oversee the implementation of the Gender Policy and

monitoring of gender issues;

 Indicators developed for staff performance with regard to adherence to the gender

 Regular gender sensitivity workshops will be held to maintain and reinforce the
adoption of equality between women and men as a core value.

 Although both men and women need to have their consciousness raised with regard to
equality issues and the need to counter social prejudice/stereotypes about women and
men, especially prejudice against women, the gender sensitivity workshops will
especially target the participation of men.

5.4 Technical Capacity

The following steps will be taken to enhance the organization’s technical capacity of its staff
with the skills and knowledge needed to make CRDA and its member organizations a gender
sensitive organization.

 All departments and sections will give priority and will have an annual training
targets for improving gender sensitivity and building competence in gender analysis;

 Provide follow-up training and refreshers training on gender sensitivity and gender

 Design training that would ensure the maximum direct application of the tools

 Competencies will be built on gender analysis and conceptual clarity on equality

 Emphases will be given to capacity building of gender focal points and gender
committee members;

 Staff training on gender will emphasis on building sensitivity to women’s needs and
issues and developing abilities to address women’s special needs;

 Skill will be developed to design gender sensitive monitoring indicators during

partners project monitoring;

 Management meetings will regularly assess progress in relation to gender equity.

5.5 Accountability

To ensure accountability of all staff members the following measures will be taken:

 Mechanism to establish accountability of staff to implement the policy will be put in


 Gender awareness and gender sensitive behavior will be included in all job

 Indicators to measure staff performance with regard to gender will be developed;

 Gender knowledge and practice will be used as one of the staff performance criteria;

 Monitoring mechanism will be put in place to ensure the implementation of the



In order to make sure that all program/projects of CRDA and its member organizations projects
are gender sensitive and address gender as a cross cutting issue the following program measures
will be taken:

 Ensure that at least one member of program design team has gender analysis skill
incorporate gender questions and perspectives into projects

 Goal and objectives of program should make explicit reference to gender wherever

 Ensure that gender issues have been addressed in training and research;

 Gender knowledge of outside experts, such as consultants, researchers and trainers
needs to be mandated;

 Promote equal participation of women/men in all CRDA’s activities;

 In line with program/project objectives, undertake policy advocacy on gender


 Raising awareness on issues of women’s legal rights, reproductive rights,

discrimination, inequality, inheritance rights, violence against women etc… should be
given priority


 IEC materials and campaigns should seek to address women’s as well as men’s
interests and concerns with equal consideration;

 Put in place a mechanism/correcting measures to avoid stereotyping and gender-based

discrimination of women at all times and levels;


 Encourage and promote gender issue based networks with other NGOs, including
international NGOs, women’s organizations, human rights organizations, education
institutions, etc;

 Inter-organizational co-ordination and co-operation with Government and NGOs on

various gender issues will be established;

 The National Gender Forum of NGOs, established under the auspices of CRDA, will
be used as an advocacy organ.


9.1. Membership Criteria

The audit finding indicated that commitment and awareness to gender was not part of the
selection criteria for membership. CRDA to play its role of advocacy should ensure that:

 Member’s degree of gender awareness and commitment to mainstream gender in all

activities is used as one of the criteria for membership selection;

 Members are supported to develop, address and ensure gender equity in their
programming and management. Measures for capacity building for partners will be
provided as much as possible;

 CRDA forge partnership & network with organizations having gender expertise for
project implementation, training or technical assistance;

 The sharing of experiences among members of various strategies of promoting gender

equity is promoted.

9.2. Members’ Program Support

Project proposals that have addressed gender issues should be given priorities for financial
consideration. CRDA will play an active role in building the members’ capacity on gender issues
in order to ensure members’ projects have addressed gender issues as much as possible, and
members have understood the importance of gender equality to sustainable development.

A Selection Criteria for funding members’ projects needs to incorporate the following; and
members need to be assisted to meet these criteria.

9.3. Goals/Objectives

Empowerment of the disadvantaged people, especially women should be a priority goal of

members’ project/program proposals. Project goals should seek to promote gender equity by
being gender sensitive so that special measures may be taken for women to compensate for past
inequalities and discrimination

 Explicit references to gender should be incorporated wherever appropriate and explicitly

stated to address women and men’s interests and concerns.

 Challenging gender stereotypes that impede the achievement of equality between women
and men should be a priority goal and objectives of the members’ projects.

 Program/projects should aim at reaching equal an active participation of women in all

levels of project implementation

9.4. Design of projects

During members’ program evaluation and during selection of projects to support the following
issues need to be taken into consideration:

9.5. Needs identification

 The differences between the needs, priorities, access and control of women and men has
been identified;

 Both women and men participated in the needs assessments;

 That special focus was given to needs of girl children and women in designing,
implementing, monitoring and evaluation of the project, in order to ensure equal access
and opportunities and reduce discrimination;

 Assess whether the project will address women’s practical needs or strategic interests or

 Analyze the validity of the stated assumptions made regarding gender.

 Ensure that indicators selected are gender sensitive i.e. are relevant to measuring the
participation, results and changes for both women and men

9.6. Project activities Implementation

Promotion of equal participation of women in all project activities:

 Implementation strategies should be formulated to address the existing un equal gender


 Devise mechanisms for promoting women’s participation in decision making processes at

all levels and in all spheres – projects, programs, community, and family;

 Identify and work to overcome women and men’s constraints to participation, whether
they are physical, social, religious or otherwise;

 Access to information promotes participation, facilitates involvement in decision-making

and contributes to empowerment, therefore project should incorporate activities that will
provide women access to information by including technology-related activities that
targets women;

 Develop capacity of women and address gender-stereotyped roles of women, gender

discrimination and deal with violence against women.

9.7. Program Administration/Management

 Ensure programs and projects have considered and incorporated Gender Policy guidelines
in to programs/projects activities development process and operational guidelines;

 Staffing should be designed to reach gender balance at all levels;

 Set targets for recruitment of women staff to new projects and for filling up of vacancies
in on-going projects;

 While promoting women’s participation in program activities, women’s other
reproductive responsibilities must be taken into account and if necessary support
provided e.g. childcare.

9.8. Monitoring and Evaluation of member’s projects

CRDA should monitor the:

 Participation of women in its funded projects at all levels of projects is carried out;

 Monitoring and evaluation systems should have indicators to measure gender impact
(positive or negative) of projects and programs and should include processes for review
and corrective action;

 The gender policy guidelines is used to revise on-going projects to ensure gender
sensitivity necessary;

 Monitoring tools and processes are made gender sensitive;

 Project/program information is collected in a sex-disaggregated manner so as to provide

gender specific information;

 Projects and programs analyze direct and indirect impact (including control of resources)
on women and men.

 Collecting data on gender impact of CRDA supported projects and disseminating the
information among the members for experience sharing as well as to learn from each

9.9. Building Partners’ Capacity

The audit result indicated only one member has allocated fund to support gender mainstreaming,
therefore there is a need for:

 Financial support for institutionalizing gender with in the partners organization as well as
their programs

 Strengthen the technical capacity of members to mainstream gender both at the program
and organisational levels (practical application of gender) by:
ii Secondment of personnel that can serve as a gender specialist
iii Provision of Training and a refresher course on a continuous basis to assist
members to systematically apply gender in projects

iiii Appointing gender mentors for partners which does not afford a full time
gender expert
ivi Providing training on technical application of gender tools

 Providing financial assistance earmarked specifically for capacity building to

institutionalize gender;

 Encourage members to join the Gender Forum to enhance networking on gender issues
among its members;

 Integrating gender as cross cutting issue in all CRDA s working group

 Assisting its members in their efforts to stopping violence against women and sexual


10.1. Responsibilities

The responsibility for the successful implementation of the policy rests with each staff of CRDA.
In order to ensure that gender equity is a priority within CRDA, solid and tangible support is
required from top-level management. Management at all levels is expected to develop strategies
for providing leadership, setting standards, demanding accountability and rewarding staffs

The ultimate responsibility for the implementation of the Gender Policy however, will lie with
the Executive Management Team (EMT) composed of the Country Director, Managers and
Program Coordinators.

All staff within CRDA is expected to have the commitment and competencies to promote
equality between women and men in relation to whatever issues they are working on.


While the responsibility for promoting equality is shared throughout the organization, there is a
need for special resources and organizational structures to facilitate the work. These include the

 Executive Management Team (EMT) composed of the Executive

Director, Deputy Executive Directors and Department Heads;

 Gender Working forum to assist in mainstreaming gender in all

programs and organizations of members;

 A Gender Adviser (part time) or a full time gender focal person


The first step after the approval of the Policy will be wide dissemination of the policy.
Discussions should be held at all levels to present the objectives and scope of the policy.


The Gender Advisors or the gender focal person (if hired) will prepare annual Plans setting
priorities and targets according to the Policy guidelines. These will be reviewed periodically, at
least every six-months.


The Gender Committee in collaboration with the Gender Advisor or focal person will develop a
performance measurement framework including indicators against which to assess the
implementation of the gender policy

The framework for monitoring will address issues such as:

 The collection and analysis of data disaggregated by sex, as well as by

age and socio-economic groups.

 Analysis of information on constraints to the achievement of gender

equality and progress in the reduction of gender inequalities and the promotion of gender

 Collection of information on non-project activities such as advocacy

and networking.

 CRDA’s organizational capacity to deal with gender issues internally

and with its partner agencies.

 Availability and use of resources earmarked for gender.

 Performance review of the implementation of the policy is the

responsibility of HRD, program managers and the Gender Committee.

The annual plans will also be reviewed during the subsequent years and new plans will be
prepared on the basis of the review. The periodic reviews may lead to the Gender Policy’s being
reviewed and revised, on the basis of experiences.