One of the key pillars of the EOWE programme to effectively empower rural women in agriculture focuses on stimulating household and community dialogue around gender disparity in economic opportunities. Through facilitated Household Dialogues, the programme aims to influence perceptions and practices that hinder rural women from successfully engaging in agricultural enterprises. In Kenya, the programme developed and tested a contextualised facilitator’s handbook, which is used to train and guide local facilitators in the implementation of the Household Dialogues in eight arid and semi-arid counties in Kenya.
The Household Dialogues consist of 12 group sessions, in which couples discuss around three key gender norms that were identified to inhibit women from running profitable and viable agri-businesses in the eight counties in Kenya: (i) Time-use / heavy workload, (ii) Lack of control over the use of income and (iii) Lack of access to and control over credit. The handbook seeks to equip the local facilitators of the Household Dialogues with knowledge on these three identified norms and issues and presents a step-by-step guide and tools to facilitate a change in perceptions and behaviour around these norms
To ensure sustainability and scale of the positive behaviour change in the communities, influencers and opinion shapers, like elders, religious leaders and community leaders, are invited to participate in community dialogues, that inform the community about the activities and progress the programme is making. In addition, the programme organises Social and Behaviour Change Communication (SBCC) interventions at the community level, like radio shows and posters, to foster long-term, normative shifts in gender-equitable behaviour in the selected households and the wider community.