In this unit, we profile gender transformative health promotion activities from diverse settings, populations, and issues. Many of these initiatives are deliberate efforts to address gender inequity; others may have a component or aspect that are gender transformative.

As you review the examples, you may want to consider the following questions:

  • What approach to integrating gender was taken (i.e., gender-unequal, gender-blind, gender-sensitive, gender-specific, gender transformative)?
  • What were the intended outcomes of the initiative? What could be the unintended outcomes, positive or negative?
  • What aspect of gender inequity was addressed and how did women’s status change? Are there specific, innovative indicators such as freedom of movement and household decision making power, political and labour force participation and community engagement that could be used to evaluate these changes?
  • What more could be done to address this particular issue in this context?

The examples in the following sections illustrate different approaches to gender transformative health promotion. These include initiatives that:

  1. Challenge traditional gender norms and harmful notions of masculinity and femininity
  2. Encourage critical thinking
  3. Support economic empowerment
  4. Consider cultural relevance
  5. Engage men
  6. Support women’s leadership
  7. Use a gender-synchronized approach
  8. Advocate for women’s health at a systemic level