This International Women’s Day – HRF aims to highlight the difference its donors make for women around the world.
HRF’s work places women at the forefront of its planning and design of programmes and maintains the centrality of women across the entire programme cycle.
Our work looks beyond equality and takes a gender-equitable approach. HRF engages in contexts where women are often disadvantaged through a combination of cultural sensitivities and socio-economic barriers by ensuring we prioritise equity, rather than solely equality, we focus on issues such as access and cultural appropriateness.
For example, our water supply programme with UNICEF in Mosul, Iraq, focused on utilising vulnerability criteria, where we ensured women-headed households were targeted first by water trucking. Although not obvious at first, by delivering to households directly, women without access, either due to domestic duties, or cultural implications, received water.
Whereas this may not have been the case if water points in streets were solely our solution. Instead, we adopted both options and provided all water trucks with gender-sensitive call cards, that households were provided, so complaints and feedback could be provided to a third party agency. This is just one example of how HRF puts women at the centre of its programmes, to empower them in environments where they are disempowered.
We recognise education not just as an opportunity but as an obligation for everyone. Everyone, regardless of their status, belief or background, has the right to adequate education.
This is why HRF has empowered girls with education through its Iqra Project for many years. This project is based in Pakistan and targets poor illiteracy, which is under 10% in rural areas.
Girls who do not receive an education are more likely to be exploited or forced into slave labour when they become adults. From our permanent offices in Islamabad and Isakhel, HRF identifies children most in need of an education and change their lives by enrolling them back into school.