Data from the cocoa value chain, for example, show that women make up 47.2% of the rural population, but their participation in the labour market is almost 30% lower than that of men. Some of the reasons for the situation of women in rural areas are related to their limited access to paid work or productive assets and their high involvement in reproductive and domestic tasks.
This panorama makes us reflect on the gender gaps that exist in the inequality of opportunities that negatively affect women, and even more so women in rural areas, where the families of the Colombia + Competitiva Programme projects are located.
Likewise, this situation encourages us to recognise intersectionality and allows us to consider that there are intersecting inequalities or other factors, such as age, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability and religious affiliation, among others, that exacerbate the existing gaps.
The Colombia + Competitive Program promotes gender equality based on the INTERSECTIONALITY approach. Gender is our entry point for examining social inclusion issues, but from there, we ask how gender intersects with other dimensions of social and cultural identity, such as ethnicity, religion, age, geographical origin, etc.
There is significant female participation in the 15 sustainable value chain projects of the Colombia + Competitiva programme. Of the total beneficiaries, 32% are women, which means that 1,090 women are actively involved in the development of the four value chains.
Through the mechanism of sustainable value chains, we are promoting actions that will lead to greater social well-being, which includes a change in the current mentality to one where women's leadership and participation will be increased, and that will also promote the economic empowerment of women and men equally, increase women's productivity and income by 35%, and have a more effective advocacy system to shape policies at the organisational, corporate and institutional levels that will consolidate the processes of change in a permanent and positive way.
The programme is committed to Swisscontact's methodological approaches, which take gender equality into account and, hand in hand with our implementing partners, close the gaps in order to achieve gradual and progressive results and impacts that raise awareness and give visibility to the women involved at the root of the production process, as well as mechanisms for the social and economic empowerment of the beneficiary populations and the population in general.