UN Women Uganda Strategic Note 2022-2025
Heads of UN agencies in Uganda, the diplomatic corps and government join to launch the UN Women Uganda Strategic Note 2022 - 2025. Photo: UN Women/ Eva Sibanda

The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN WOMEN) launched its Strategic Note for the period starting 2022-2025 at a high-level event held at the Sheraton Hotel in Kampala.

The purpose of the launch was to raise awareness of the UN Women’s new Strategic Note and work in Uganda, give space for current partners from the government, development partners, private sector, and civil society to engage with the Strategic Note and ensure their buy-in, and attract new potential donors and partners for the achievement of the priority areas.

The plan is aligned to the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework Guidance (UNSDCF), the National Development Plan III and it lays out six targeted outcomes that the Country Office will work towards in the next 4 years which include;

1.         Inclusive and Accountable Governance and Women’s Access to Justice

2.         Women’s Rights, Gender Responsive Peace and Security

3.         Women have increased productivity, income, and access to resources

4.         Vulnerable women have the capacity to mitigate and adapt to Climate Change & Disaster Reductions

5.         Women & Girls Enjoy Quality Basic Social and Protection Services

6.         Gender Equality and Women Rights Fulfilled in a Culturally Responsive Environment

The Strategic Note was launched by the Minister of State in Charge of Gender and Culture, Hon Peace Mutuzo who commended UN Women on the achievements made during the previous cycle of the Strategic Note.

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Minister of State in charge of Gender & Culture, Hon. Peace Mutuzo. Photo: UN Women / Eva Sibanda

“As a country, we have registered tremendous progress in women empowerment and addressing gender inequality such increased women in key positions in government standing at  34% representation in parliament, to having a female Vice President, Speaker of Parliament and Prime Minister.”

“Through government programs like the youth livelihood program and parish development model, the government aims to advance women empowerment and address gender inequality.

We are also intentional on making women part of planning and implementation of programs that will bring about economic prosperity,” she added.

Hon Peace concluded by acknowledging the UN Women and all development partners including the Government of Sweden, Government of Norway, Government of Austria, and European Union for the core financial support and partnership to address gender issues in the country.

“We are proud to be a core partner of the UN in advancing Gender Equality and Women Empowerment in Uganda,” said the Ambassador of Sweden to Uganda, H.E Maria Håkansson.

H.E Maria Håkansson
Sweden's Ambassador to Uganda H.E Maria Håkansson appends her signature on the dummy copy of the strategic launch at the event. Photo: UN Women / Eva Sibanda

She further mentioned that the gains made with support from the Government of Sweden can be seen and noticed, “and we commend UN Women and strongly congratulate the entire team on launching this important plan.”

United Nations Resident Coordinator in Uganda, H.E Susan Namondo. Photo: UN Women / Eva Sibanda

The United Nations Resident Coordinator in Uganda, H.E Susan Namondo observed that Uganda has made important gains in women empowerment, including the current cabinet of Uganda which has 46% female representation but decried the persistent existence of violence against women.  

“We cannot achieve the sustainable development that we dream of, without women empowerment. Advancing women empowerment has been catalytic in bringing the UN forward in their mandate and eliminating gender-based violence is a key flagship area in implementing the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework,” she said.

The launch provided an opportunity for detailed discussions on the effects of COVID-19 pandemic on the gains made regarding women empowerment and gender inequality and it was agreed that the pandemic exacerbated the challenges.

“Globally, there are 24% more women between the age of 25-35 years living in total poverty than men because of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the Sarah Hendrik, UN Women Director, Policy, Programme and Intergovernmental Division

The Strategic Note was developed in consultation with a wide spectrum of stakeholders including the UN, Government, development partners, private sector, academia, research agencies and Civil Society Organizations. It will enable the country office to consolidate the gains of the last cycle (2016-2021), while improving and addressing the emerging challenges in Uganda, such as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on gender equality and women empowerment.

Ms Ali Maka Wins Two-Months Photography Internship Opportunity with UN Women Uganda as she emerges winner of the Photo competition

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Ms Ali Maka the winner of the UN Women photo competition. Photo: UN Women / Eva Sibanda

At the same event, Ms Ali Maka was awarded a two-months internship opportunity with the UN Women in Uganda for emerging the best in a photo-contest that was organized under the theme ‘We empower’ depicting ways in which women are making use of opportunities to empower themselves and other fellow women.

Her photo depicted a female community leader who was caught up and could not make it for a meeting on time. To solve that challenge, she rode a motorcycle to the meeting venue, an act that is not common in Uganda and caught everyone in attendance by surprise.

This caught Maka’s eye, and she requested to take a photo of the lady, and as they say, the rest is history.

Maka earned herself a photography internship with UN Women and she will be given an opportunity to showcase her skills and contribute to the communications department of the country office with photos telling the human story and amplifying the work of UN Women in field in furthering gender equality and women empowerment.