Gender budgeting project launched in 10 provinces
Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Şahin (L) speaks with Sabancı Foundation Chairwoman Güler Sabancı during a meeting to launch the gender budgeting project. DAILY NEWS photo, Emrah GÜRELThe Family and Social Policies Ministry, together with local and international partners, plans to begin “gender budgeting” to improve gender equality in 10 local administrations’ budgets as part of a new, multi-partner project.
“You have to give all parts of society equal opportunities. If you ignore half of society from birth with a sexist point of view, then how can you achieve the development targets that you put forward?” Minister Fatma Şahin told journalists at a conference held at the Sabancı Center in Istanbul yesterday.
The three-year U.N. Development of Women’s Human Rights Program was launched by the Sabancı Foundation, the United Nations Development Programme, the U.N.’s women’s agency and the Family and Social Policies Ministry.
The Sabancı Foundation has put forward 1.7 billion dollars toward the project, which will include works in 10 Turkish pilot cities, including Aydın, Çanakkale, Edirne, Erzincan, Eskişehir, Kahramanmaraş, Kastamonu, Kayeri, Kocaeli and Ordu.
The three pillars of the program consist of gender budgeting at local administrations, the Sabancı Foundation Fund Program and the Purple Certificate program, which aims to train at least 200 high school teachers in gender equality subjects.
With the gender budgeting, the budgets of the local administrations will be organized according to the needs of women’s rights and gender equality.
At the same time, the Sabancı Foundation will provide funds to local institutions and nongovernmental organizations working to improve women’s rights, as well as the departments of universities which focus on gender equality.
According to the 2011 report of the World Economic Forum, Turkey ranks 132nd out of 135 countries in terms of women’s economic participation in society, Sabancı Foundation Chair Güler Sabancı said at the event.
“This list shows us that we have a long way to go and we have a lot more to do,” she said.
Successfully completing the project will allow Turkey to join the upper ranks of countries in terms of women’s economic participation in society.
Şahin also said the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women had selected Turkey over two other countries as the location of a new regional office that is set to soon open in Istanbul.