Gender Action Mainstreaming for Empowerment to Change


Women's Rights | Women's empowerment | Working with men | Participation | Wealth Creation | Sustainability |
Rocky Road Framework and Tools| GALS Processes | Diamond Forest | FALS |
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Young boy from Ngiima, Mbinga Tanzania draws his vision at a community GALS workshop.

What is GALS@Scale?

Under the Hivos GALS@Scale programme the GALS methodology will be adapted to the needs of private sector companies, large cooperatives and governments.

Using GALS as a long-term business investment strategy to increase the skills and resources of women and men with whom they work, they will be able to generate increased profits and outreach. This means that they can also be the motors for widespread change in gender relations as a win-win strategy to make a significant contribution to national development and global economy.

GALS@Scale partners

GALS@Scale is working with with coffee trading partners in East Africa:

It also works directly with a number of GALS resource organisations in the coffee sector in these countries:

GALS@Scale is also linked to gender mainstreaming and lobbying within the Africa Fine Coffee Association (AFCA) network.

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GALS (Gender Action Learning System) is a cost-effective and sustainable community-led planning methodology. It helps women and men to have more control over their lives and work together on a basis of shared visions and values of equality.

GALS@Scale adapts the basic GALS process and tools to the specific needs of private sector partners and cooperative unions in the coffee sector. Over 3 years it aims to:

  • reach and benefit at least 6,000 women and men coffee farmers through the GALS methodology
  • lay a solid basis for ongoing sustainable upscaling

It uses the distinctive GALS facilitation methodology and champions produce their own local songs and participatory dramas.

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Change Catalyst Workshop

A 5 or 6 day workshop, or series of shorter sessions over 3 months introduces and uses:

Soulmate Visioning and Vision Journey Tools introduces the basic GALS change planning process: the ‘life road journey’ framework. Women and men develop individual and collective visiosn for change with SMART ‘milestones’, analyse opportunities and constraints, commit to actions and track progress over time.

Gender Balance Tree initiates and then reinforces discussion of gender issues focusing on strategies needed to balance the relative work input of women and men into the household with what they get out in terms of expenditure and wellbeing. It also includes an analysis of gender differences in assets and decision-making.

Coffee Challenge Action Tree introduces analysis of ways of moving forward in relation to improving coffee quality and quantity through addressing challenges in production, processing and marketing. It integrates gender analysis of these issues building on the Gender Balance Tree.

Empowerment Leadership Map sets up the skills and networks for pyramid peer upscaling using Empowerment Leadership Maps as the basis for sustainability of subsequent gender justice mainstreaming and movement-building

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Community Action Learning

Following the catalyst capacity building, the champions continue to track and reflect on their progress towards their economic, gender and leadership goals through Community Action Learning. They share their individual experiences in any groups and networks they are involved in with other champions.

The partner organisation and/or Hivos consultant reinforce this process mainly through aggregating the information from the groups and reinforcing the participatory facilitation skills and using Challenge Action Trees to analyse gender issues arising.


Periodic reviews to asssess progress in relation to the aims of the GALS champions, partners and sponsors. These:

  • aggregate the quantitative information from the Community Action Learning
  • use participatory tools like the Gender Diamond and Challenge Action Trees to deepen the gender change process

They also introduce further tools as necessary for:

  • livelihood strengthening and value chain development
  • counselling and conflict resolution
  • leadership and organisational development
  • governance and policy research
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Future Plans

Plans are also being developed to adapt GALS to the needs of other commodity sectors and countries in Africa.

A particular focus is on youth (girls as well as boys) as they will be key not only for the future of their national economies, but also in determining the type of society they will live in.

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