Colombia

WOMEN LEAD IN EMERGENCIES Global Learning Evaluation Report

CARE’s Women Lead in Emergencies (Women Lead) model has been developed to operationalise CARE’s commitment to women’s leadership as one of our four focal areas for Gender in Emergencies.1 Women Lead supports women within communities at the frontline of conflict, natural and climate-related hazards, pandemics and other crises to claim their right to a say over the issues that affect them, and to participate in emergency preparedness, response and recovery.
The Women Lead model looks to address fundamental gaps in humanitarian response that result in the exclusion of women from meaningful participation and leadership in the decisions that affect their lives.

Since 2018, CARE has piloted Women Lead in 15 locations in Colombia, Mali, Niger, the Philippines, Tonga and Uganda. In 2020, Women Lead worked directly with 804 women’s groups. Through piloting this approach in diverse locations and within different types of humanitarian crisis, Women Lead has sought to understand challenges, barriers and enablers regarding this kind of programming in different contexts.
Women’s confidence, knowledge and self-efficacy: The evaluation identifies considerable qualitative evidence of increases in confidence, knowledge and capacities. Participants identified the Women Lead model as being relevant to their needs and accessible to them. We can see evidence of women identifying Women Lead as an important enabler of collective action – supporting women to raise their voice, advocate for their needs and engage more effectively with stakeholders. Quantitative surveys support these findings. In Niger, 88% of Women Lead participants feel confident in their knowledge of their rights compared with 58% of non-participants. In Uganda, 58% of Women Lead participants reported ‘confidence in accessing services’ compared with 40% of non-participant women who said the same.
2. Women’s presence and meaningful participation in decision-making: The evaluation finds that Women Lead increases women’s presence, regularity of attendance, and meaningful and effective participation in decision-making community settings. In Niger, 91% of women who participated in Women Lead had attended formal community meetings and almost 60% said they had attended these meetings regularly compared with only 34% of non-Women Lead participants. This had occurred despite men in the community previously challenging women’s presence at these meetings. The Women Lead model appears to normalise women’s presence in decision-making spaces, and we see some evidence of women forming their own decision-making forums and creating opportunities for themselves to make decisions, take action or hold leaders to account. In Uganda, the South Sudanese Refugee Women’s Association has formally registered to become the first recognised women's community-based organisation in Omugo settlement. We also see the incorporation of Women Lead groups in Colombia, where groups have formally registered and started to offer services to other women.
3. Women’s informal and formal leadership: We see strong evidence of women feeling empowered to take up leadership positions within their community, both formally and informally. In Niger, women are significantly more likely to be leaders in their communities than non-participants (31% of Women Lead participants compared with 9% of non-participants). In Uganda, 22% of Women Lead participants hold leadership positions in their communities compared with 14% of non-participants. In Colombia, for which we have pre- and post-comparison data available for this indicator, before Women Lead 21% of members held leadership positions within their community. This had increased to 40% by the time of this evaluation. However, there is scope to enhance this work further and for there to be more consistent promotion of women’s leadership through work around political representation, leadership style and horizontal/inclusive decision-making processes.
September 2022 – Global Evaluation Report vii
4. Women take collective action: The Women Lead approach both helps empower women and serves to address complex barriers to their meaningful participation. Women Lead action plans are a useful tool to mobilise women for collective action to advocate for women’s needs and wants, organise peer support and solidarity activities, and improve their communities by engaging power-holders. Action has also frequently been taken to tackle the preconditions for participation and, in the action plans available for analysis, 42% of actions related to livelihood and income generation. This highlights the importance of women being free to prioritise according to their needs, to ensure they can tackle the preconditions of participation where necessary. We can also see clear qualitative evidence of women taking collective action to make change within their communities. This includes:
• Influencing humanitarian actors and local authorities to address the needs of women and the community: In Uganda, group members successfully advocated for humanitarian response actors to move the food distribution site closer.
• Advocating to address an injustice: In Niger, women had difficulty accessing maternity services owing to high costs. The Women Lead groups advocated to the district medical officer and the head of the hospital – and achieved a considerable reduction in the cost of accessing hospital services.
• Connecting and complementing community actors: In Uganda, Women Lead groups took a lead in addressing community tensions. For instance, when there were tensions around access to land and firewood, women worked with leaders from different communities to put in place agreements on the use of natural resources.
• Direct delivery and problem-solving: We see examples of women working to respond directly to the needs of their peers. In the Read More...

Expanding Learning on the Effectiveness of Integrating Gender-based Violence Prevention, Mitigation, and Response and Cash and Voucher Assistance

This program aimed to include adult women and men, aged 18 years or older, who were survivors of or at risk of GBV, including those with diverse SOGIESC and those living with a disability or disabilities. CORPRODINCO caseworkers were all female and enrolled survivors who voluntarily disclosed an incident of GBV. Caseworkers assessed participants’ need for cash assistance for protection, examining the economic drivers of their exposure to GBV risks, as well as the financial barriers to their recovery; this process took place according to the program’s standard operating procedures, which were aligned with best practice guidance and tools. Survivors who met the program’s eligibility criteria and were enrolled were guided through the steps of the cash referral during GBV case management by their caseworker. Read More...

An Operational Learning Brief on Integrating Cash Assistance into Gender-Based Violence Programming in Ocaña, Colombia

With the deterioration of the economic and political situation in Venezuela, a humanitarian crisis has spilled into 16 countries across Latin America and the Caribbean, including Colombia. Colombia hosts 2.4 million Venezuelans as at
2021. Internal displacement and confinement escalated in 2019, due to a variety of armed non-state actors competing for income from narcotrafficking, human trafficking, and illegal mining.2 Despite being increasingly overshadowed by the Venezuelan migration crisis, the preexisting internal conflict in Colombia has ensured that the country has the second-largest number of internally displaced persons in the world (after Afghanistan), with an estimated 9.2 million people experiencing protracted displacement. Read More...

The Effectiveness of Cash Assistance Integrated into Gender-Based Violence Case Management for Forced Migrants, Refugees, and Host Nationals in Norte de Santander, Colombia: A Quasi-Experimental Mixed-Methods Evaluation

As a complement to core aspects of GBV case management, preliminary evidence finds that cash and voucher assistance (CVA) may strengthen survivors’ capacities to recover from GBV and enable access to services. For example, CVA can help a GBV survivor to pay the costs associated with fleeing an abusive relationship, such as temporary accommodation and transportation, and to access legal assistance. There may also be indirect pathways in which CVA could be used by survivors and individuals at risk to reduce their exposure to GBV, such as decreasing their financial dependence on abusive partners or family members and shifting power dynamics in intimate relationships. Read More...

Women’s Voice and Leadership Program Formative Evaluation

The formative evaluation of the Women’s Voice Leadership (WVL) Program covered the period from its announcement in June 2017 to March 2021. The evaluation had three objectives: to determine if and to what extent Global Affairs Canada was “fit for purpose” to support WVL as a feminist program; to determine if WVL’s design features and implementation modalities were relevant and appropriate to address the needs of women’s rights organizations (WROs), and to determine WVL’s progress toward results. Read More...

Informe Final “MUJERES, DIGNIDAD Y TRABAJO” Programa Igual Valor, Iguales Derechos, CARE América Latina y El Caribe”

Este proyecto tiene como meta contribuir al mejoramiento de la situación de las Trabajadoras Remuneradas del Hogar en América Latina por medio de estrategias de formación, incidencia, comunicación y desarrollo económico. Y a la vez a su autonomía y empoderamiento para que incidan en políticas públicas, a favor del cumplimiento de sus derechos humanos y laborales en Ecuador, Colombia y Brasil.
Read More...

ON THE FRONTLINE: Lessons on health worker empowerment through the COVID-19 pandemic response

Around the world,frontline and community health workers serve to connecthealth services, commodities, and informationwiththose who need them. Equippedwith the relevant skills and community trust, theycanstrengthen health systems by bridginggeographic and financial accessibility gaps for rural, hard-to-reach, and vulnerable populations through last-mile health delivery. When integrated into national and local healthcare systems, community health workers can additionally help patients navigate complex systems of care and ensure care continuity across services. Historically during times of health crises, global governments and organizations have often relied on community health workforces as frontline responders to deliver life-saving care to disproportionate l y affected populations. The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic was no exception, with many countries mobilizing their existing community health worker programs or initiating new ones to assist with pandemic response . Leveraging lessons learned through its decades long support and implementation of frontline and community health worker initiatives across 60 countries, CARE developed guidelines for community-level pandemic response and disease prevention during this time. In June 2020, CARE partnered with Abbott to launch a one-year in-depth primary care response to the COVID-19 pandemic Read More...

Colombia: Vouchers for Sexual Reproductive Health (SRH) Services

This study is part of a larger multi-country study by CARE entitled “Cash and Voucher Assistance for Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights Outcomes: Learnings from Colombia, Ecuador, Lebanon and Somalia.” As a result of Venezuela’s socioeconomic and political crisis, there have been massive migratory flows of people from Venezuela into Colombia.1 According to the Interagency Coordination Platform for Refugees and Migrants, as of May 2020 over 1.76 million Venezuelans had fled to Colombia with many continuing to walk to and across the Southern Border with Ecuador as caminantes.

CARE Colombia began direct operations in the country in 2019, focusing primarily on the needs of Venezuelan
refugees and migrants in Pamplona, Norte de Santander and, later, Bucaramanga, Santander. Cash and Voucher
Assistance then (CVA) are primary modalities for CARE Colombia, particularly for its SRHR and protection portfolio.
Working with populations on the move as was was the case in this program, together with high levels of unmet SRHR needs resulted in a unique operating environment for a voucher intervention supporting SRHR programming.
This case study focuses on the design of the programming only. Due to the timing of the review, no substantive data on the user experience of the vouchers or outcomes could be captured. Read More...

CASH AND VOUCHER ASSISTANCE FOR SEXUAL REPRODUCTIVE HEALTH AND RIGHTS LEARNINGS FROM ECUADOR, COLOMBIA, LEBANON, AND SOMALIA

CARE is committed to ensuring that projects with cash and voucher assistance (CVA) are designed with and for women and girls, addressing recipients’ needs, challenges, and opportunities. CARE has invested in research on how to make CVA work for women and girls through gender-sensitive approaches to framing processes and outcomes of the modalities. As a widely accepted method of increasing access to services and improving autonomy, dignity, and resilience, programming with CVA has been integrated into numerous sectors to improve the lives of displaced communities, particularly the most underserved. To date, CARE’s CVA has primarily been used for food security and livelihood outcomes and multisectoral outcomes via multipurpose cash (MPC) transfers. Now, aligned with its strategic intent, CARE is investing in sectoral areas where CVA is less often used and that are of primary interest for women and girls, including gender-based violence (GBV) response and sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).

Building on extensive experience with CVA and SRHR programming, CARE conducted a study to investigate how outcomes for the pilot initiatives using CVA for SRHR compare to global learnings, and to identify opportunities for strengthening and expanding pilots for long-term programming. The study reviewed programming in four contexts (Colombia, Ecuador, Lebanon, and Somalia). The initial study was undertaken by two consultants, one focused on Lebanon and Somalia and one focused on Colombia and Ecuador. Data collection included 25 remote key informant interviews (KIIs) with CARE staff at the global and country levels as well as staff from partner organizations, followed by After Action Reviews with each country team and a validation meeting. All activities were undertaken in either English or Spanish and transcripts were analyzed using data analysis software. Analysis was conducted both by country and across contexts to identify commonalities and thematic learning, mostly led by CARE technical advisors. Read More...

Latin America & Caribbean: Venezuelan Migrants & Refugees in Colombia

This Rapid Gender Analysis provides preliminary information and observations on the different needs, capacities and coping strategies of Venezuelan migrant and refugee women, men, boys, and girls in Colombia. It seeks to understand how gender roles and relations have changed as a result of the crisis and share recommendations for how the humanitarian community can more effectively consider these changing dynamics to better meet the different needs of women, men, boys and girls of different ages, abilities and other contextually relevant forms of diversity. Read More...

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