Understanding the Gender Role, I Am Stronger

Chandy shares GALS tool to a women team in her village. Photo: Oxfam

Life changed for Chandy after she participated in the Empower People for a Better Life (EPBL) project activities and discovered the Gender Action Learning System (GALS). It helped this street recycling buyer and quiet 34-year-old mother of four children to unlock her talents and ignited her passion for promoting gender awareness, participating in community development, improving her leadership skills and supporting other women in her community.

When she was approached to have the opportunity to be a GALS champion, a savings group member and a cashier, she hesitated but finally accepted by pushing herself, totally lacking self-confidence.

Building Self-confidence

Chandy got training, coaching and mentoring. She learned to work with a team. All were helped to reflect on their leadership skills and knowledge in applying GALS tools.

“I think I am stronger and have more confidence to make decisions in my life and family and to be a GALS trainer for my community,” added Chandy.

Chandy is very interested in balancing power and has contributed a lot to gender role awareness in the family and community. She previously viewed herself as just a simple woman doing unpaid care work and household chores. But now she realizes she is holding the power to help her community advance by volunteering to support the community and will sit in a poll to elect a community leader.

“I am willing to be a candidate in the next election for the post of commune chief in Boeung Khnar Commune here in Pursat Province to help my fellow villagers get out of domestic violence and promote gender equality,” expressed Chandy.

Heng Chandy is one of 13 GALS champions in the EPBL project implemented by Gender and Development for Cambodia (GADC) and Oxfam. These women champions are playing a very important role in this pilot stage by developing a handbook, leadership knowledge kits and raising gender and leadership awareness.



Chandy share GALS tool to her team in her village. PHoto: Oxfam