Gender Equality Programming in Emergencies

CARE’s humanitarian mandate is to save lives. CARE cannot meet the humanitarian needs of women, men, girls and boys without understanding and responding to the different needs and capacities of all genders and life stages. CARE is committed to making emergencies work for everyone through its four-step approach to Gender in Emergencies which underpins our four core technical areas of humanitarian expertise: WASH, shelter, food security and livelihoods, and sexual reproductive health.

CARE GiE Approach

Making humanitarian emergencies work for women, men, boys and girls requires more than tweaking the status quo. It requires a new approach to gender in emergencies. CARE has a four-step approach to Gender in Emergencies that involves gender mainstreaming and gender specific actions.
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GEWV/GiE Indicator Pilot

A set of Gender Equality Women's Voice (GEWV) indicators have been developed with the aim of allowing CARE to capture, measure, and track the changes occurring as a result of the dedicated gender approach across both development and humanitarian programming.

For our humanitarian work in particular, this is quite experimental. The concentration for the humanitarian pilot is on developing a set of indicators, along with the guidance and proposed measure items, that can be used to look at the outcomes of our Gender in Emergencies (GiE) work. This will then feed into the broader GEWV impact indicators.

While a first phase of the pilot is complete, the pilot process is now being reconsidered, with the draft measures being made accessible to all those who would like to participate. This has the aim of getting the broadest application and feedback on the measures as possible.

These measure items are still in draft form, but we encourage teams to choose those that are relevant to their programming, integrate them into their monitoring and assessments, and report back on how useful the data was, how easy it was to use the measures, what changes were required etc.

Please take this as your invitation to participate! See this page for the full details.

Gender in Emergencies Guidance Note Series

The Gender in Emergencies (GiE) Guidance Note Series is set of simple, user-friendly, documents that can be used individually or as a series by CARE, partner staff, and consultants. The notes aim to provide practical guidance on key processes and approaches to further CARE’s Gender Equality mandate. They are short 2-4 page documents synthesising our collective knowledge into easy to use language and formatting around our key approaches. The Guidance Notes are meant to be used by CARE and partner staff working on emergency response.

For more information : Do provide us with feedback when you use these to help us improve the next round.

CARE's Rapid Gender Analysis Toolkit

Rapid Gender Analysis (RGA) provides information about the different needs, capacities and coping strategies of women, men, boys and girls in a crisis situation. It does this in part by examining the relationships between women, men, boys and girls. An RGA is built up progressively, providing an initial but incomplete analysis of gender relations in an emergency, and links to more in-depth Gender and Power Analysis using the CARE Good Practice Framework. An RGA is also used to make recommendations to ensure that CARE comprehensively meets the needs of everyone involved in the crisis.

For a step-by-step guide to CARE's Rapid Gender Analysis click here, and see the external communications document below:

Sector specific minimum commitments: demystifying gender and diversity programming

The minimum commitments are a tool meant to make gender sensitive and inclusive programming tangible, simple and practical. First used by country clusters, they became a key resource for the global WASH cluster that developed minimum commitments for the safety and dignity of affected people. CARE has been involved from the start in the piloting of the tool and is now working on widening its uptake.
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For more information, including the WASH Minimum Commitment tools, click here.

Gender in Emergencies and Sectors

Gender Equality Programming in WASH

Gender Equality Programming in Shelter

Gender-Based Violence in Emergencies

CARE International UK, with funding from the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), have developed a toolkit to mitigate risks of GBV in Shelter programming in emergencies. Click here to access the toolkit online.

Gender and Emergency Preparedness

Gender in Brief (GiB)

A Gender in Brief compiles and analyses the state of gender roles and relations in a country pre-crisis and presents this information into a two-page document. A GiB helps to understand how the crisis has led to changes and can help indicate the gender issues that are likely to arise. They are designed to provide accessible and practical information to non-gender specialists and can support better and more targeted programming recommendations. GiBs are a key part of producing CARE's Rapid Gender Analysis (RGA) in an emergency. When creating a Gender in Brief it is important to follow the GiB Guidance Note and the GiB Template.

The GiB Template provides insight into the format of the GiB and a practical set of questions that will help provide direction about the content of the GiB. When developing a GiB it is important to remember that it should include references and be no more than two pages.

Country Specific Gender in Briefs can be found here.

Rapid Gender Analysis Report (per Country) and Research Reports


El Nino


Papua New Guinea

Fiji - TC Josie and TC Keni April 2018


Nepal ER Response 2015

Papua New Guinea - Earthquake February 2018

Syria Response


Making Emergencies work for Women, Men, Boys and Girls

South Sudan




CARE Gender Marker in Emergencies

The CARE Gender Marker was originally piloted for use in humanitarian programming. CARE drew on the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC) Gender Marker, and expanded its application throughout the entire project cycle of humanitarian relief, from preparedness to planning and proposals, and into the response.

The humanitarian pilot began in 2014 in Syria, West Africa, and the Philippines. The external evaluation took place in 2015. The external evaluation recommended the integration of the Gender Marker into CARE’s systems.

Find the updated (2016) CARE Gender Marker documents here.

In Their Own Voices - قصصهن بكلماتهن

This collection of short stories shares the experiences of ten women aid workers from CARE Jordan responding to the unprecedented humanitarian crisis in Syria.

Gender in Conflict

© 2008 Ambica Shah/CARE

"Women are most affected by armed conflict and post conflict situations.They experience war and conflict in different ways compared to men, as victims of rape, trafficking, sex slavery and forced prostitution as well as in some instances, perpetrators of violence and participants in conflict. But they are also a driving force for prevention and management of conflicts. They are peacemakers and advocates for peace and national reconciliation. They are single heads of households, and principal caregivers." Rachel Mayanja

The Impact of Armed Conflicts on Women
"Men, women, boys and girls experience conflicts in different ways. Women often take over non-traditional roles brought on by the changes and transformations during the conflicts that render them both victims and actors. On the one hand, war is a burden for women and girls including gender-based and sexual violence (rape as a weapon of war), the spread of HIV/AIDS, increased vulnerability, lack of mobility and the use of women as sexual slaves by soldiers. On the other hand, women also get involved in the conflict as combatants, by taking take care of extended families in extremely adverse circumstances and by developing coping mechanisms to take over non-traditional occupations which enables them to gain exposure outside the private sphere." Excerpt from the UNDP Gender manual

Report: May 2014 “The Girl Has No Rights: Gender-Based Violence in South Sudan

This new CARE report seeks to shed light on the very difficult conditions shouldered by women and girls in the conflict-stricken country of South Sudan; not only as targeted victims of community-based and ethnic violence, but also facing extreme the hardship and abuse resulting from forced displacement, extremely high levels of poverty, and aggravated incidence of poor health, malnutrition and psychosocial stress amongst others in states marked by intense fighting and high concentration of affected civilians. Rape, sexual, physical and psycho-logical violence have proven to be regretful side-effects of violent conflict. In South Sudan, such grave abuses occur in a context where routine services, livelihoods strategies, key assets and protection systems have been disrupted or completely shattered. The denial of basic human rights, such as the right to life, safety and security of the person, health, shelter and education has made women and girls, among other social groups, particularly vulnerable to suffering diversified forms of violence, and/or enduring them as a survival routine. The new CARE International report calls on donor governments and humanitarian actors on the ground to prioritize key actions to further respond and prevent GBV. Read the full report by clicking on the link below (4 MB).

Gender in Post-Conflict Settings

© 2005 Ami Vitale/CARE

"Once we understand the political, economic and social impact of wars on men, women, girls and boys, we are in a better position to define the needs of a postconflict society. This is a very important phase that gives an opportunity to promote reconstruction efforts with a gender perspective and enable women to participate actively in this process (as they may not want to return to the status quo ante bellum). This wide range of activities requires a gender perspective, such as the reconstruction of civil society, reorganization of police and armed forces, promotion of human rights, organization of elections, access to and control over resources (land issues for female head of households) and the setting-up of truth and reconciliation commissions."// Excerpt from the UNDP Gender manual

Claiming rights – promoting peace

Empowerment of women in conflict affected areas

Since 2006 CARE Österreich (CÖ) is running a cross-country program, financed through the Austrian Development Agency (ADA) in Burundi, Uganda and Nepal. It is denominated “Claiming Rights, promoting Peace: Empowerment of Women in Conflict affected Areas”, and thus strengthens the implementation of the UN SCR 1325.

It reflects several, most important issues with regard to CARE’s programming:
- CARE Österreich and partners put women’s empowerment on the core of their work, as CÖ
is committed to social change for women
- CARE Österreich takes on the program approach, in order to contribute to the achievement
of significant and lasting impact on poverty reduction and social injustice
- CARE Österreich is committed to be a learning organization and has therefore included a
strong learning component into the program.

The program envisaged Learning Conferences in order to reflect the ongoing program process as well as achieved results and lessons learned. According to the commitment to document results, CARE Österreich prepared the following reports of the Learning Conferences in Nepal 2008 and Burundi 2009.

Peace Building and Post-Conflict Recovery are Women's Business
No Lasting Peace Without Women
On the occasion of the 10th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, CARE UK launched the report "From Resolution to Reality: Lessons learned from Afghanistan, Nepal and Uganda on women's participation in peace-building and post-conflict governance." Women rarely have opportunties to participate at the negotiating table and where possible, partcipation remains rather tokenistic and event-based. The original, innovative spirit of 1325 went astray due to missed opportunities in connecting grassroots activism up to national and regional level political processes. More positively, many thousands of women used SCR 1325 to mobilize attention on root causes and legacies of the violence in their country.

Afghanistan Case Study: Meaningful Participation and Empowerment for Women in Post-Conflict Governance and Peace Building: Lessons Learned

Nepal Case Study: Women's Meaningful Participation in Peacebuilding and Governance

CARE's Guidance to Country Office for Implementing UN Security Council Resolution 1325

Together with Isis WICCE, CARE implemented a workshop on Peace Building and Post-Conflict Recovery for Women Leaders and Activists on the Peace, Recovery and Development Plan for Northern Uganda (PRDP) and other Peace Building and Post Conflict Recovery Initiatives in Uganda. Acting as a means of linking grass-roots women's voices to national level policies, the workshop was attended by members of national as well as local CSO's and individual women's rights advocates. The following report provides an insight in the most important outcomes and findings of the workshop.

To find out more about CARE Österreichs commitment to Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment please follow the link:
Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment

Background information on GiE at CARE

CARE’s hasGender and Emergencies Taskforce updated a Gender in Emergencies (GiE) Strategy and drafted a detailed implementation plan for 2011. In Niger, CARE recently applied the GiE strategy by establishing Village Savings and Loans groups to provide immediate assistance to those most affected by the food crisis. In Pakistan, CARE hired a Gender Advisor specifically for the 2010 flood response and is working to address gender barriers throughout the emergency response. In Haiti, CARE hired a Gender/GBV Advisor to integrate gender into all sectoral responses and partners with local groups to address GBV and exploitation related to food and nonfood item distribution. In Bangladesh, CARE adapted CARE’s International’s Prevention of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA) policy to the local context and documented its mainstreaming in various programs. Overall, CARE’s humanitarian training programs have themselves achieved a gender balance among their responders by taking proactive measures to recruit and train women.

Related Topics


  • Gender Handbook in Humanitarian Action - The IASC Gender Handbook is a tool for sectors to plan, implement, monitor and evaluate its programmes with a gender lens. It is available in Arabic, Chinese, English, Farsi, French, Russian and Spanish.
  • Guidelines for Integrating GBV into Humanitarian Action (2015) - To coordinate, plan, implement, monitor and evaluate essential actions for the prevention and mitigation of GBV across all sectors of humanitarian response.
  • Report on Sex and Age Disaggregated Data (SADD): If the data is not specific about the impact of our work on different groups of people, women, girls, boys, men, older people or disabled, it is difficult to know the specific needs of these people have been met. The report "Sex and Age Matter: Improving Humanitarian Response in Emergencies" shows us clearly that the humanitarian community has not invested enough in collecting and using sex and age disaggregated data to inform our programming. Find the Report here, and the executive summary in French here.

Gender in Conflict

Gender and Post-Conflict Reconstruction

  • AWID: The gender Dimensions of Post Conflict Reconstruction: The Challenges in Development Aid

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