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Document Abstract
Published: 2016

Hope dries up? Women and girls coping with drought and climate change

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The current drought in Mozambique has a disproportionate impact on women and girls. Unequal power relations, gender inequalities and discrimination mean that women and girls are often hardest hit during a crisis and will take longer to recover. Women and girls experience vulnerability different to men. During times of crisis women`s access to, or control over, critical resources worsens, and can lead to exclusion from claiming basic services and rights. As a result women’s and girl's vulnerability can increase and under-mine their ability to cope with the impacts of droughts and other disasters.

Many women are empowering themselves and others to cope with the drought by identifying mechanisms to better influence the control of key resources, including water, and to address evolving social norms. This adaptability has crossed into the areas of informal savings and loans mechanisms, water management, outreach and the sharing of critical information. There is also a high interest among women to identify ways to diversify their agricultural production to include drought tolerant crops that can be grown beyond the current 4-month agrarian season.

Activities include:

  • environmental impacts - women and girls effectively supported to develop coping mechanisms that minimize negative environmental impacts while meeting critical income and food requirements at household level
  • food & income shortfalls - adoption of alternative income sources including using village savings and loans mechanisms to start small businesses. Practicing conservation agriculture technologies that help women to plant a range of drought tolerant crops and resume cultivating cashew groves
  • water shortfalls - participation in the management of water resources to ensure access and sustain resource

 

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Authors

A. Fischer

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