Welcome Remarks: Innovative Integrated Development Solutions to Advance Women’s Economic Empowerment

Friday, January 26, 2018
Women Economic Empowerment

Welcome Remarks by Oxfam Country Direcotr, Solinn Lim

Regional Learning Workshop
Innovative Integrated Development Solutions to Advance Women’s Economic Empowerment

25-26 Jan 2018

H.E Math Mara, Secretary of State for the Ministry of Rural Development;

H. Chan Somaly, Deputy Secretary General of the National Council for Sustainable Development for the Ministry of Environment;

H.E Ninphaseuth Xayaphonesy, Deputy-Director General Department of Development for Lao Women's Union

Mr. Kong Chanthan, Climate Resilience Specialist for National Committee for Sub-National Democratic Development Secretariat (NCDDS)

Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen

I would like to warmly welcome you to Oxfam’s Regional Learning Workshop entitled ‘Innovative Integrated Development Solutions to Advance Women’s Economic Empowerment’. For those of you who are visiting the majestic land of Angkor for the first time, I would like to encourage you to afford some extra time after this workshop to explore the ancient architecture and Khmer civilization.

Oxfam conducts regional learning events annually but this is the first time we have opened the event up externally to enable cross-sectoral sharing among a variety of champion actors working on Women’s Economic Empowerment in the region including government, civil society organisations, development partners, donor agencies and the private sector. Oxfam believe this is a much needed joint effort for all stakeholders to collectively address the key challenges such as poverty, inequality, and violence against women and girls in alignment with the SDGs—Goal 5 in Achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment.

Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) has become a pressing priority in recent years, as governments, the private sector, and donor agencies recognise its potential to simultaneously catalyse economic growth and contribute to broader human development. However, as practitioners, all of us if we were to be honest here, given the complexity, we all know full well that programs often do not know ‘where to start’ when it comes to integrate WEE into their programming.

This workshop will examine and debate various approaches to women’s access to economic opportunities in a wide range of sectors including agriculture, gender-based violence and women leadership, reproductive health, livelihoods and small and medium enterprises development, urban migration, financial inclusion, microfinance and banking, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. I hope together we will identify best practice models clarify steps on the way from a basic minimum to achieving the full potential of WEE programming, strengthen relationships between key stakeholders and develop strong collaborative action plans to move forward. We are privileged to have experts from an array of disciplines across various sectors to speak, enabling us to explore each topic in depth and capture learnings. Let’s make the most of our time together.

I would like to sincerely thank you all for taking time a way from your busy schedules to contribute to this important reflection and learning event. Most sincere thanks to all our Partners, Speakers, Panelists, Moderators, Contributors and Participants. I would also like especially thank our workshop organizing team who have prepared us very well for this workshop.

We look forward to engaging and collaborating with you to more effectively foster positive changes in the lives of the most vulnerable women across the region.

Thank you.

About the workshop: https://cambodia.oxfam.org/women-empowerment