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Discussion / Event
The gender budget advocacy has been done for nearly five years by NGOs in Indonesia. The gender budget advocacy has been implemented in 2011 by several NGOs which are the members of Gender Budget Analysis Forum which works at national level and local level with its forum members who work locally. At the national level, this forum conducts gender budget advocacy by urging the MPR (People’s Consultative Assembly) to allocate 15% budget for education, 15% for health, and 5% for women empowerment from the State Budget (MPR Decree No.6/2002). At the local level, this forum encourages local government to formulate gender budget like in Sumatera Barat where the forum, in collaboration with the local government and local parliament, analyzed the impacts of state budget implementation for men, women, and female teenagers.
This advocacy encourages government to issue gender mainstreaming policy in its attempt to alleviate poverty. One of the ways is to implement the formulation of gender budget which is strengthened by Minister of Home Affairs’ Decree No.132/2003. Gender budget is a tool to create gender equality, equity, and balance. The implementation of gender budget is necessary along with the issuance of gender mainstreaming policies.
When looking at the policies to encourage gender budget, it becomes clear that gender budget is a strategic program to encourage the implementation of gender budget nationally and locally. However, the implementation of regulation to implement gender budget is still far from what is expected. We can also see that in some places, gender budget is distorted or even is not implemented. Also, the capacity of gender budget advocates is still weak, and very often they work with their own agendas. From the study on the impacts of gender budget and the capacity of gender budget advocates, we can see the failure and success of the inclusive governance and citizen engagement in improving the welfare of the marginalized groups especially women.
From the assessment of the impacts of gender budget and the capacity of gender budget advocates, we can see that conducting workshop and FGD on the Assessment of the Need of Capacity Enhancement is important. The workshop and FGD are aimed at conducting participatory assessment of field officers and obtaining inputs from the participants. The Workshop and FGD are also directed to see the impacts and benefits gained from gender budget advocacy.
Summary of the Activity
The aim of this focused discussion is to conduct participatory assessment of field officers and obtain inputs on the development of strategy in supporting and strengthening gender budget advocacy agencies.
The Implementation of the Activity
Focused discussion on gender budget was held in Surabaya. This discussion was attended by budget advocates in Surabaya which are comprised of the representatives of Surabaya’s Executive Body, members of Commission B Surabaya’s Regional Representative Council Level II, and representatives of local NGOs.
N. Yohhana (Head of Assessment Department-Education Agency), Anna (Community Empowerment Agency/Bapemas), Sri Supadmi (Social Agency), Dian (Researcher-Human Rights Center Ubaya), Farida (YPSDI), Delly (Health Agency), Antok (City Planning and Development Agency/Bappeko), R. Sucipto (YLWD), Titiek M (Jarpuk), Vida An Dani (Savy Amira), Agustin P. (Member of Commission B), Yulyani (Local Parliament/DPRD), Irmia F (City Council), Aris Arif Mundayat (WRI), Erni Agustini (WRI), Faiq (LBH), Nadia (Cakrawala Timur, Erma S (Samitra Abhaya KPPD).
The discussion was opened by Sylvia Kurnia Dewi, a representative of Samitra Abhaya KPPD as the local committee in Surabaya, who explained briefly the aims of this event. It was then continued by Sita Aripurnami who conducted brainstorming activity to know participants’ understanding of gender and its relation to gender budget.
Sita’s session was started by brainstorming the concept of differentiating between sex and gender and its impacts which lead to inequality for women in all walks of life. In this session, Aris also provided a short review on the definition of gender budget. The next session discussed the activities done by each participant and the achievements as well as obstacles in advocating gender budget.
The next session was delivered by Erni who presented the findings of the previous research. After that, the participants were divided into 3 groups according to their background. The first group was legislative body. The second group was from executive body. The third group was from NGOs. Unfortunately, the participant from legislative body, Yulyani, could not join the event thoroughly and the discussion of the legislative group was only joined by Agustin Poliana. The discussion of the executive group was led by Sita while the NGOs group was led by Erni.
In line with its aims, from this focused discussion, we could obtain inputs from various gender budget advocates. From these inputs, we can see and assess the extent of each individual’s understanding and the efforts that have been taken. The assessment is used for the improvement of strategy development model in the strengthening of gender budget advocacy organizations.
Achievements of the Focused Discussion
The inputs from various gender budget advocates are:
The budget drafting mechanism should be supported by a group of experts who understands gender budget.
There should be a Decree (SK) from the City Mayor on gender mainstreaming.
We need a gender-responsive participatory planning.
The draft of the local budget (APBD) that has been approved by the regional parliament still needs to be analyzed.
There should be a female member in Commission D to express the aspirations and needs of women during the process of budget drafting.
There should be an understanding and awareness of the importance of gender budget and budget planning for women.
There should be access for and involvement of women in the policy making process.
There should be an understanding of adolescent.
There should be women’s understanding and awareness of gender
There should be deeper understanding of human rights.
The training has not covered all levels of society, so for the next event; we need to include more people.
We need to provide both men and women with the understanding of the fulfillment and enforcement of human rights.
There should be communication and network between CSOs to advocate gender budget. ***