Social Development: Forest Management & Gender
Understanding the different uses and interaction with the forest by women and men should be considered an essential element of designing and planning forest management interventions. Although women’s knowledge and needs often differ from those of men, many programmes continue to overlook these points when it comes to forestry. Ignoring gender issues in forest management isn’t an option given that improper management and potential loss of essential ecosystems will have a different impact on women and men. As a result, the only means to ensure their true conservation is to include both women and men’s voices in decision making. By doing so, these programmes will benefit from the knowledge, skills and incorporate the needs of half the population, which are currently not being addressed. The programmes will also avoid increasing drudgery and suffering for women that result from forest degradation.