Tag Archives: gender

Gender-Based Violence Information System Design

by Stacey Berlow of Project Balance. Stacey co-facilitated a session on a Gender Based Violence Information System in Zambia at MERL Tech DC.

John and Stacey croppedA big thank you to our client, World Vision, and to Yeva Avakyan, Head of Gender and Inclusion at World Vision USA, for inviting Project Balance to participate in the recent panel sessions at MERL Tech and InterAction.

We participated on the panels with World Vision colleagues Holta Trandafili, Program Quality Specialist and John Manda, Senior Monitoring and Evaluation Technical Advisor Zambia last week (September 6-8th). The sessions received a lot of great feedback and participation. Yeva and her team put together this impactful video about the prevalence of gender based violence in Zambia and how One Stop Centers provide needed services to women and men who experience violence in their lives. World Vision works in close collaboration with the Zambian government to roll out gender based violence support services.

The Zambian 2014 statistic are compelling:

  • 37% experienced physical violence within the 12 months prior to the survey.
  • 43% of women age 15-49 have experienced physical violence at least once since age 15
  • 47% of ever-married women age 15-49 report ever having experienced physical, sexual, and/or emotional violence from their current or most recent partner
  • 31% report having experienced such violence in the past 12 months.
  • Among ever-married women who had experienced IPV in the past 12 months, 43% reported experiencing physical injuries.
  • 10% of women reported experiencing violence during pregnancy.
  • 9% of women who have experienced violence have never sought help and never told anyone about the violence.

The drivers of GBV include:

 

  • Norms that teach women to accept and tolerate physical violence, and teach men that it is normal to beat his wife.
  • Extreme poverty, high levels of unemployment
  • Women’s extreme economic dependence on men
  • Socialization practices of boys and girls in schools and the community
  • Sexual cleansing practices
  • Belief that having sex with a child who is a virgin will cure HIV/AIDS
  • Initiation ceremonies that encourage young women to be submissive
  • Forced early & child marriage

An occasionally connected system was built that allows facilities to enter and save data as well as run reports locally and when there is an internet connection, the data automatically synchronizes to a central server where data from across all facilities is available for reporting.

GBVIMS_System_Setup

A participant asked John how data collected was used and if technology positively impacted the program. John gave some concrete examples of how the data showed differences in the number of people receiving certain types of services between facilities and regions. The Zambian team asked “Why the differences?”. This led to analysis of processes which have been adjusted so that survivors can receive medical and psychological help as soon as possible. The technology allows trends to be identified earlier through automated reporting rather than having to hand calculate indicators at the end of each reporting period. As the technology provider, we were excited to hear that the GBVIMS is being actively implemented and program participants and managers are using the data for decision making. It’s wonderful to be part of such a passionate and professional team.

Using an online job platform to understand gender dynamics in the Mozambican informal labour market

Oxford Policy Management Consultant Paul Jasper’s self-professed professional passion is exploring new ways to use data to improve policy making in the Global South. At MERL Tech London in 2016, he presented on two tech-driven initiatives in Mozambique–Muva and Biscate. In his talk, he explains why these are two great examples of how programming and social policy can benefit from innovations and data coming from the tech sector.

Muva is a program that aims at testing new ways of improving women’s access to economic opportunities. It works primarily with women and girls in urban areas of Mozambique and across all sectors of the economy. Its beneficiaries include employees, self employed people, and micro-entrepreneurs. While conducting its work, the program recognized that one key characteristic of the Mozambican economy is that the informal sector is pervasive. Over 90% of new jobs in sub-Saharan Africa were produced in the informal sector. Given this quality, the challenge for organizations like Muva is that because it is an informal sector, there is very little quantitative data about it, and analysts are not quite sure how it works, what dynamics are in operation, or what role gender plays.

This is where UX, a startup based in Maputo, was able to step in. The startup noted that the majority of jobs in informal sector were assigned in old-fashioned way–people put up signs with a telephone number advertising their service. They came up with an USSD-based solution called Biscate. Biscate is a service that allows workers to register on the platform using normal mobile phones (few people have access to smartphones) and set up advertising profiles with educational status and skills. Clients can then check the platform to find people offering a service they need and can leave reviews and ratings about the service they received.

UX has soft-launched the platform and registered 30 thousand workers across the country. Since its launch, Biscate has provided unique data and insights into the labor market and helped close the data and information gap that plagued the informal sector. Muva can use this info to improve women’s access to opportunities. The organizations have partnered and started a pilot with three objectives:

  1. To understand dynamics in the informal labor market.
  2. To test whether Muva’s approaches can be used to help women become more successful in the informal sector.
  3. To influence policy makers that want to develop similar programs by producing valuable and up to date lessons.

See Paul’s presentation below if you’d like to learn more!