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Women for Natural Resource Governance Program

FROWI is working to ensure that women have better access to, and control of, natural resources such as land, water, forests and minerals to improve the chances of long-term peace. Women in Uganda are primarily responsible for meeting the water, food and energy needs of households and communities. Many women are also active in forestry and artisanal mining.As such, they play a critical role in the use and management of natural resources. Despite this, women remain largely excluded from owning land, benefiting from resource wealth or participating in decision-making about resource management. This exclusion often extends to negotiations over the way that natural resources are allocated, with the result that women’s specific needs are rarely met.

Failing to seize the opportunity presented by women’s roles in natural resource management can perpetuate inequity. For example, giving women farmers the same access to assets and finance as men could help increase yields on their farms by 20 to 30 per cent. Natural resources, such as mineral wealth, have the potential to provide significant sustainable employment opportunities for women. Grassroots Women and girls also routinely experience physical insecurity when carrying out daily tasks linked to natural resources like rape, harassment and other forms of violence when they have left homes to collect such essential resources as firewood and water. Environmental degradation has intensified the problem and is forcing women to travel longer distances for example searching for firewood. FROWI is working to;

  1. Promote women’s participation in formal and informal decision-making structures and governance processes related to natural resource management
  2. Explore opportunities for empowering women to effectively use, manage, make decisions on and benefit from natural resources.
  3. Providing opportunities to increase Women’s participation in decision-making at all levels, and to enable them to engage in economic recovery more productively.
  4. Addressing issues of inequality related to resource access and ownership, participation in decision-making and benefit-sharing early on in the peacebuilding process is therefore a critical condition for lasting peace and development.
  5. Implementing measures to protect women from resource-related physical violence and other security risks.
  6. Removing barriers and creating enabling environment to build women’s capacity for productive and sustainable use of natural resources.
  7. Creating partnerships, building networks and increasing cooperation to pursue women’s empowerment and sustainable natural resource management together with other actors.