Friday, December 18, 2015
Establishing a Gender Sensitive Energy Sector
Recognizing the significance of promoting gender equality, the Department of Energy (DOE) presented in a Soft Launch the “Gender Toolkit for the Energy Sector” last December 10 in H20 Hotel in Manila.
Working together with the energy Gender and Development-Focal Point System (GAD-FPS) led by outgoing Energy Undersecretary Loreta G. Ayson, CESO I, the Philippine Commission on Women, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the DOE aims to provide a set of guides and reference materials to its internal units, attached agencies, and other offices and organizations in the sector on how to make their operations and programs more aware of, and responsive to the gender concerns of their clients.
Energy Secretary Zenaida Y. Monsada said in a message delivered by OIC-Asst. Secretary Patrick T. Aquino that “Balancing the gender fulcrum requires complementing initiatives from both genders,” emphasizing that the toolkit will bring both genders together and bridge the gap caused by gender disparity and difference in the energy sector.
The toolkit consists of four parts:
1) The GAD Strategic Framework, which affirms the DOE’s role in recognizing, protecting and fulfilling the right of all people to equal opportunities and participation in the energy sector included in the GAD Agenda for 2015-2020;
2) How to Integrate the Twin Goal of Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in Polices, Plans, Programs, and Projects;
3) The GAD Checklist, which serves as a worksheet in designing programs or projects for gender sensitivity or responsiveness; and
4) The Guide in Mainstreaming GAD in DOE, which will be used to ascertain the stage of an agency’s gender-focused efforts and initiatives in addressing related issues and areas of concerns.
Anchored on the Republic Act (R.A.) 7192 otherwise known as The Women in Development and National Building Act and R.A. 9170 on the Magna Carta for Women, the DOE-GAD program is implemented nationwide given the annual allocation of five percent (5%) of its budget under the General Appropriations Act since 1995.
Projects under DOE-GAD program include the renewable energy projects in collaboration with the Affiliated Renewable Energy Centers in state universities, information, education and communication campaigns in various local government units discussing energy safety, and efficiency, capacity building on gender mainstreaming and sensitivity, and projects to increase awareness among high school students on science subjects and encourage them to take up college course relevant to energy. Consultations with the DOE attached agencies are also held yearly, the latest of which was held on December 09.