Shifting Social Norms towards Women’s Leadership Role through Community Dialogue


UN Women, in collaboration with Care Ethiopia and Amhara Bureau of Women, Children and Social Affairs, has launched the ‘Community Dialogues on Gender Equality and Women’s Participation in Leadership and Decision-Making in Amhara Regional State’ project to challenge and change the negative perception of the community towards women’s participation in leadership and decision-making positions.

Mantegbosh Asamre is a 26-year-old woman living in Angiko kebele, Fogera woreda of the Amhara Region. She facilitates Community Dialogue (CD) monthly discussions that aims to increase community understanding of gender equality and women rights to participate in leadership and decision-making.

Before joining the Project as a CD member and community facilitator, Mantegbosh said that she used to have anxiety to stand in front of people let alone participate in community meetings and gatherings. Then she was selected by Care Ethiopia to be part of the Community Dialogues project and was trained on how to lead and facilitate community dialogue meetings where she became part of the Social Analysis and Action (SAA) CD Groups in her kebele. She concluded “The project helped me not only to facilitate the community dialogue sessions but also to be able to make equal decisions with my husband on our resources at the household level…it boosted my confidence.”

Mantegbosh facilitating one of the Community Dialogue events. Photo Credit/Care Ethiopia
Mantegbosh facilitating one of the Community Dialogue events. Photo Credit/Care Ethiopia
“The project helped me to be confident enough to stand Infront of people and lead the community dialogues “
Mantegbosh Asmare , a community dialogue facilitator  living in Angiko kebele, Fogera woreda, Amhara Region


The project uses gender transformative approach titled Social Analysis and Action (SAA) which facilitates critical reflection and dialogue on how social and gender norms, as well as power relations shape perceptions and expectations of community members, and influence their decisions and behaviors. Testimonies from participants of the Community Dialogue groups show the project transformed perceptions, and boosted the confidence of women to participate in public life.

The project has reached round 1920 community members during its first phase (December 2019- March 2021). Currently, 2880 community members are participating the second round which was launched in December 2021, and runs until March 2023.