Integrating gender equality and Women, Peace and Security (WPS) priorities in strategic planning, programming and budgeting processes of the Department of Peace Operations (DPO) is a key priority contributing to enhancing peacekeeping efficiency. It is a key request in most peacekeeping mandates and a core focus of the Action for Peacekeeping+ plan. Security Council Resolution 2242 on WPS calls on peace operations to redouble their efforts to better integrate WPS priorities and gender equality.

To advance this work, a training took place from 22 to 26 August 2022 through a partnership with the United Nations System Staff College’s (UNSSC) the Peace and Security Hub  and the Gender Unit at DPO. The training welcomed 60 active participants, connecting from New York HQ and eight UN peacekeeping missions.

Reflecting on his key takeaways from the training, Emmanuel Patay Menwon, (Civil Affairs Officer at United Nations Mission in South Sudan) said: “I am very grateful to UN headquarters and UNSSC for organizing this very pertinent training that addresses the importance of integrating gender equality and the WPS Agenda in planning, programming and budgeting. Understating how to go about this has been an age-old challenge that needs to be improved to provide equal opportunities for all to make meaningful contributions to effective and efficient peace operations. I am now more sensitive to the importance of integrating gender and the WPS Agenda across the programme lifecycle.”

Speaking at the training, Daniel Maier, the Chief of Strategic Planning at the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, provided an overview of strategic planning processes, highlighting how planning should be gender-responsive from the very beginning. Oumou Diawara, a Gender Affairs Officer at the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in Mali (MINUSMA) spoke about gender-responsive budgeting and provided practical examples of how MINUSMA has cooperated with both internal and external stakeholders in Mali to ensure gender integration.

Eira Fallen, UNSSC Learning Portfolio Manager, noted that the training provided rich opportunities for staff working in various roles and at different levels to reflect on how, by working closely together, we can improve operational effectiveness and create more gender-responsive peace operations.

At the closing of the training, Catherine Andela, the Chief of DPO’s Gender Unit, reminded participants how “Implementing WPS mandates is both our collective responsibility and our individual responsibility, not just the responsibility of gender units.”

Plans are underway to develop additional training on the same theme.

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