eu_article_mwea_project_version1_compressed_final.doc - Enhancing the capacity of civil society to promote women’s rights and economic empowerment in

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Enhancing the capacity of civil society to promote women’s rights and economic empowerment in Myanmar Facts and Figures: EU contribution: 300,000 EURO (100% of total budget) Starting date: 16/01/2012 End date: 15/07/2013 Duration: 18 months Beneficiaries: MWEA members Government General Public Since independence in 1948, Myanmar has struggled to achieve democracy, to ensure the rule of law, to uphold human rights and to guarantee fundamental freedoms. Myanmar’s first multi-party elections in 2010 symbolized at least a nominal step away from military dictatorship, and demonstrated increased freedom for civil society to participate in reforms to improve governance in the country. Myanmar’s civil society has however long been repressed or manipulated by those in power. The gradual democratization process now taking place in Myanmar offers to the civil society a crucial CONTEXT WOMEN IN MYANMAR While several notable women such as Aung San Suu Kyi have been prominent in Myanmar civil society’s political struggle, the average women who make up half of the country’s population face many forms of discrimination and violence related to gender, and do not enjoy protection of their human rights and fundamental freedoms. Although Myanmar is a signatory of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) the Working Group on the Universal Periodic Review recently noted serious concerns including: the high prevalence of violence against women and girls, such as widespread domestic violence and sexual violence, low rate of participation of women in all areas of public, political and professional life, and called on the government to ensure equal opportunities for women in the labor market. The various disadvantages that women in Myanmar face in education, reproductive health, and in the labor market are evident in the country’s ranking of 132nd out of 169 countries according to the Human Development Index of 2010, which is calculated to include gender indicators. opportunity to become more involved in encouraging active citizenship and public education in order to contribute to the promotion of good governance. Therefore, with the funding of the EU, ACTED, in partnership with the Myanmar Women Entrepreneur’s Association (MWEA) initiated a project to enhance the inclusiveness and pluralism of civil society and empower underrepresented groups for active citizenship by strengthening the capacity of an existing women’s platform.
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MWEA member participating in exchange visit Outreach to build professional linkages The objective is to promote gender equality and women’s economic empowerment through advocacy within the business sector.
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