WHH advocates for gender mainstreaming tool for improved livelihoods

Welt Hunger Hilfe (WHH) in collaboration with Agricultural Gender Roles Extension Support Services (Agresso) on Thursday said gender mainstreaming tool called Household Approach (HHA) is meant to ensure balanced decision making at household level that can also influence families' socio-economic. 

WHH Project Manager, Khama Matupa made the remarks during an open day at Nabale in the area of Sub Chief Chiwalo in Mangochi where WHH was advocating for gender mainstreaming tool which is also being used as part of Covid-19 response in T/A Nankumba's area.  

Matupa observed that most income generation activities and decision making at household level are made by men, adding that the gender mainstreaming tool, HHA helps to balance up the decision making at household level in giving each and every member in the house an opportunity to make a decision that can influence their family's socio-economic success.

“The Household Approach open day is meant to reach out to many households in the communities. WHHs Household Approach programme has almost reached 500 households since the programme commenced in 2020," Matupa added.

Matupa: HHA is an instrumental tool in addressing gender issues. Pic Petro Mkandawire (Mana)

The WHH intervention in Sub Traditional Authority Chiwalo and Traditional Authority Mponda is expected to end this year, according to Matupa.

One of the HHA participants, Jonas Yasini from Njonjolo Village in Traditional Authority Mponda in the district, said through WHH programme his family has improved following the HHA which has seen collective decision making including improved acquisition of assets and equal control of the assets.

“At first we were living in a grass thatched house, we had one bicycle, one chicken, but through household approach programme, my family life has changed since we have managed to build a new house, bought mattresses, goat and a motor cycle,” added  Yasini.

Mangochi AGRESSO, Chimwemwe Chisenga said families are able to make joint decisions, improve power relations and control of assets as well as benefiting together from agricultural products and businesses.

“We are working hand in hand with WHH in making sure that farmers are able to work with their families, make decisions together and it is pleasing to note that this programme has enabled many families to increase agricultural production,” said Chisenga.

The HHA as a tool is also used to reduce gender based violence (GBV), she said, adding that WHH intervention has since encouraged cohesiveness, transparency and in turn reduce gender based violence incidences.

Mangochi District Gender Officer, Metro Chingani said the programme has a transformative approach as it was helping men and women to work together to improve their living standards.

“This is a tool in dealing with GBV because it encourages family to work together since each and every member of the family is able to know what is happening and everybody is involved in affairs of the family,” she added.

In his remarks, Sub Traditional Authority Chiwalo said WHH intervention in his area has brought very positive results, adding that the intervention has improved people's living standards in his area.  

Sub Chief Chiwalo: WHH interventions have brought positive results in my area. Pic, Petro Mkandawire (Mana)

“Let’s come together and hold hands to fight gender based violence through this programme and if we work had our vision will be realised,” said Chiwalo.

WHH is a non-governmental organization founded in Germany and is currently implementing various interventions in Malawi in collaboration with different sectors such as agriculture and water to improve the livelihoods of rural communities.