The European Union Delegation to Liberia has announced that in support to the Liberian Government Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD), it will shortly embark on the implementation of three essential development programs across the country.
The EU and United Nations in partnership with the government and the civil society will this March launch three important projects including Spotlight, Gender Responsible Planning and Budgeting Policy and SHED.
Juan Antonio FRUTOS GOLDARATZ, political counselor of the EU in Liberia, said the program will seek to eliminate gender-based and sexual violence against women and girls and other harmful practices.
Mr. Goldaratz said: “The Spotlight initiative will adopt a comprehensive approach, and will address key drivers of change, including legislation, policies, institutions, prevention strategies and access to services.”
He added that the project will be implemented in five counties – Grand Cape Mount, Montserrado, Nimba, Lofa, and Grand Gedeh.
The Gender Responsible Planning and Budgeting Policy project will be launched on this Thursday, March 7 at the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning.
It is expected to valuable impact on the Pro-Poor Agenda and will be funded by the EU.
Mr. Goldaratz said the project will be a powerful tool to ensure that gender equality is mainstreamed in all the EU funded programs in Liberia.
Later this month, the EU along with its local partner will launch in Kakata, Margibi County a project aimed at protecting the rights of prisoners.
The program will target prisons in Lofa, Bong, Nimba and Margibi Counties.
“Special attention will be given to female inmates and their gender-specific needs,” the EU envoy said.
He intimated that the path to full gender equality in practice is still a long one, adding that the European Union remains committed and will continue to work so that girls and women are free of harassment, abuse and violence, and achieve equality in all aspects of life.
He added that investing in women and girls is an investment in society. “That is why gender equality and women empowerment are at the heart of the EU’s values, interests and polices. It is an absolute priority for us, both inside the EU and in our external action.” Mr. Goldaratz noted.