Sensitisation of BIHAN’s Gender Resource Persons on gendered issues affecting nutrition

Six of the Chhattisgarh Rural Livelihoods Mission’s (BIHAN) gender resource persons (GRPs) were oriented on addressing food, nutrition, health and WASH issues facing women and adolescent girls in their communities in a two day workshop. The GRPs are from Bastar’s  Ghotiya cluster which is a model Cluster Level Federation. 

This is part of BIHAN’s social development strategy which recognises gender to be a “cross-cutting socio-cultural variable.” ROSHNI is currently supporting the state rural livelihood mission to enhance the gender responsiveness of its Swabhimaan Programme, which is a community led programme to enhance the nutrition and health status of women and adolescent girls.

Women’s dietary and food related decisions are often governed by power dynamics within the household and deep-rooted patriarchal norms in the larger community. BIHAN thus seeks to sensitise its cadre to perceive and address nutrition issues through a gender lens and to become active facilitators of long-term behaviour change.

The sensitisation process led by ROSHNI dealt with the need to target families, particularly men and mother-in-laws for all interpersonal counselling to create an enabling environment for women to practice positive health, WASH and dietary behaviours. The GRPs were also introduced to the micro-planning method, which is a process whereby SHG women identify and prioritise various gender as well as systemic problems impacting health and nutrition outcomes in the community. The sensitisation process was activity based with regular observation and feedback. ROSHNI will now co-create a context-specific gender micro-planning manual with the GRPs before conducting micro-planning meetings across Ghotiya CLF’s 18 Village Organisations.