By Alex Abutu
The AATF and Tanager announced a two-year partnership agreement (2020 – 2022) aimed at integrating nutrition and mainstreaming gender into the Foundation’s Nutrition, Food Quality and Post-Harvest Management Impact Area. The partnership will help AATF integrate strategies towards gender equality and nutrition integration in its operations.
Tanager, through the Impacting Gender and Nutrition through Innovative Technical Exchange for Agriculture (IGNITE) mechanism, will work with AATF to integrate strategies that equip the Foundation to work towards gender equality and nutrition integration in its operations. The strategies will not only increase and sustain women’s empowerment in agriculture but also address factors that have contributed to gender inequalities in the agriculture sector.
Through the partnership, Tanager will work with AATF to develop and adopt approaches that increase access to safe, affordable, nutritious foods in the communities where AATF works to influence the consumers’ behavior change.
This engagement will include a diagnostic assessment with AATF to determine the gaps and entry points in strengthening nutrition components. The partnership will work towards building and aligning the capacity of AATF staff in gender and nutrition while answering learning questions around both themes.
“We are collaborating with IGNITE to identify models that can improve nutrition and women’s empowerment through our work. Gender integration is considered a cross cutting issue within AATF and is embedded in all its programmes aligned to the current AATF strategy,” said Grace Muinga, AATF Gender Focal Point.
“Mainstreaming a gender perspective across AATF activities involves ensuring that gender dynamics consideration is central to all activities in technology identification, development, deployment and commercialization including resource allocation, planning, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of projects,” she added.
The AATF’s Gender Strategy (2018 – 2022) goal is to ensure that projects, governance and the institutional framework are gender responsive at all stages of design, planning, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of agricultural technology research and development.
According to Maureen Munjua, Country Representative, Tanager in Kenya , the partnership will support AATF to integrate nutrition-sensitive interventions in new and existing programmes and provide thought leadership in the design of new interventions that have potential to deliver on improved nutrition outcomes. In addition, through AATF’s work with multiple stakeholders, this partnership will demonstrate and influence a market system approach to integration of nutrition and mainstreaming of gender equality.
“Considering the enormous role of women in the sector, African agriculture needs to ensure access to safe, affordable nutritious diets and improving women’s economic and social empowerment. IGNITE will continue to partner with AATF in strengthening gender mainstreaming from an institutional perspective” said Maureen.
AATF considers gender as being about men and women and recognizing the heterogeneity between them. It acknowledges the difference in race, culture, religion, age, sex, marital status, physical ability and others with men and women. AATF is committed to foster gender responsive agricultural technology development and commercialization in SSA. AATF aims at reaching 16 million smallholder farmers by 2022 through its activities and those of its partners.