Determinants Of Gender Mainstreaming In Constituency Development Fund Projects In Kenya: A Case Of South Imenti Constituency
This study focused on determinants of gender mainstreaming in constituency development fund projects in Kenya. The objective of the study was to examine the influence of cultural practices, gender awareness, availability of resources and organisational procedures on gender mainstreaming in South Imenti CDF projects. The research design used was a descriptive research design. The design was suitable to answer the questions concerning determinants of gender mainstreaming in constituency development fund projects in South Imenti CDF projects. The research focused on six hundred and twenty seven (627) committee members of the two hundred and nine (209) CDF projects in South Imenti constituency. Cluster and random sampling was used to select a sample of one hundred and twenty five (125) respondents. The research employed self-administered questionnaires to collect data. The data was processed and analyzed using statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) version 17. Descriptive statistics and binary logistic regression were used for analysis. The results are presented in summary reports and tables. Research findings were used to answer research questions and give recommendations on determinants of gender mainstreaming in constituency development fund projects in Kenya. The findings indicated that only 48.7% of the projects had a gender mainstreaming document. Cultural Practices and gender mainstreaming awareness were found to be significant determinants of gender mainstreaming of a CDF project. In the Meru context, traditional beliefs and cultural attitudes regarding the role and status of women in society are still prevalent and many women are part of this system finding it difficult to dislocate from this culture and tradition lest they be ostracized. Gender mainstreaming requires the need to build up the necessary gender knowledge among all policy-makers and learning processes to develop the capacity to put mainstreaming strategies into practice. The study recommends that gender roles should be shared at family level so that the girl child can grow up with a cultural message that there are no jobs that are specifically meant for men and women, policy makers to come up with a curriculum that include gender issues for purpose of sensitizing the community on the cultural barriers which hinder gender mainstreaming, women to have small size families in order to create ample time for their career progress and that women should form professional networking clubs where they mentor each other in order to assist in confidence building, enhancing self-esteem and socialization. It is also recommended that every project management committee should engage a gender expert to steer and advise on gender- related aspects in the project, gender experts together with all those with information on gender mainstreaming strategies should engage other stakeholders in sensitization efforts and that there is need for the government and stakeholders to sensitize all those in project management committees that funds should be availed to train all employees on gender issues at their workstations. Since the study focused on CDF Projects in South Imenti Constituency, it is suggested that the study be extended to other Constituencies to assess whether different findings may be reached regarding gender mainstreaming in CDF management committees.
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