Gender equality: How the pandemic amplified pre-existing prejudice, and what you can do about it.

The pandemic has pushed back the timeline required to achieve gender equality from 100 to 136 years. We will examine what led to these increased barriers and what we can do now to assist in achieving gender equality.

Sometimes, working hard is simply not enough.

Since the year 2006, the World Economic Forum (WEF) has issued an insightful report on the topic of the Global Gender Gap. Trending in 2020, the closure of the Global Gender Gap was estimated to require as long as 99.5 years to be attainable. In 2021, the gap continues to widen, with an estimate of 135.6 years for women and men to reach parity [1]. A 36-year gain marks the largest jump in one year since the report first began in 2006. Some news reports have speculated that the impact of the pandemic on women is likely to be underestimated given that the available data has been using the same methodology for the past. Looking at only four indicators: economic opportunity, political power, education, and health.[2]

The evolving roles of men and women, alongside the changes required to guarantee LGBTQA+ rights needs organizations to work towards diversity and inclusion practices to sustain peace within communities. But what would it take for humanity to reach gender equality. Here are 5 organizations we recommend you to know to get started:

  1. The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) is the UN agency dedicated to gender equality. It was established to accelerate progress toward meeting women’s needs across the world and to support the UN members in achieving global standards of gender equality. The agency also works closely with civil societies and governments to design and implement policies, laws, and services that benefit women.

  • Equality Now was founded in 1992 with the mission of promoting legal advocacy to protect the human rights of women and girls. The foundation uses legal means to create an equal and just world for women and girls. Equality now not only attracts global attention for stories of individual cases of abuse but also cooperates with policymakers to pressure national governments to adopt and enforce effective laws.
  • The Global Fund for Women is one of the world’s leading organizations for gender equality and human rights for girls and women. The organization was created with the mission to amplify the courageous work of women who are building social movements and challenging the status quo within patriarchal societies. The organization’s campaigns include but are not limited to zero violence, political and economic empowerment, and sexual and reproductive health rights for women globally.
  • The Men Engage Alliance (MEA) is unique in its purpose of educating and engaging men and boys in the struggle for gender equality, while also working to build and advance gender justice by supporting men’s positive involvement in peacebuilding. Its mission is to achieve a world in which all people can enjoy healthy and equitable relationships and reach their full potential. The MEA works in several areas, promoting sexual and reproductive health rights, increasing HIV and AIDS treatment, ending violence against women and girls, advocating for LGBTQA+ rights, preventing child sexual exploitation, sexual abuse and trafficking, supporting male-led initiatives for women’s and children’s health, and addressing macro-level policies that reinforces gender inequalities.
  • Rise Up is an organization that works on mobilizing women and girls to transform their lives, families and communities by investing in local solutions such as education against gender-based violence, to strengthening of local leaderships, and building movements. The organization’s network is composed of 500 leaders who have directly benefited around seven million girls and impacted around 100 laws and policies in Africa, Latin America, South Asia, and the US.

Surely there are more than five organizations out there for you to consider, but by connecting with just one, it will open up an arena of possibilities for you to discover just what kind of inclusive leadership style is right for you.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s head right to it!

[1] Global Gender Gap Report 2021. World Economic Forum. Reports. 30th March 2021. Website. Cited on June 17th, 2021.

[2] Haynes, Suyin. The Global Gender Gap Will Take an Extra 36 Years to Close After the Covid-19 Pandemic, Report Finds. Times. March 30th, 2021. Website. Cited on: June 17th, 2021.

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