Gender Training

A center for sensitization  to the role and important of gender in peacekeeping.


When thinking about peacekeeping operations, it is common to relate gender with specific offices or professional staff that are tasked to deal with it: Gender Advisers and Gender Offices, Sexual Violence in Conflict Unit, Women Protection Advisers. However, gender is a task that should affect everyone in a peacekeeping mission: from Blue Helmet, to civilian staff, police etc. This implies working in an environment composed of both men and women, which accepts and promotes equal and interdependent roles, in order to create the conditions under which women can participate in peacekeeping missions. It also entails the adoption of a gender approach in the strategies of protection of civilians and resolution of conflict. In practical terms, it involves:

- specific strategies to protect local women. In conflict settings women are exposed to sexual violence more than men (although men are also victims of violations, but to a lesser extent). Sexual assaults occur during daily activities, which is why peacekeepers should adopt a gender approach in identifying, together with local women, strategies of prevention and protection. For example: escorting women to the local market.


-  ways to relate with local women, in order to understand in which way they can actively contribute to conflict prevention and resolution. In many peacekeeping scenarios, local women have fewer opportunities than men to have contact with peacekeeping actors. Culturally official exchanges are indeed conducted by men. As such the challenge is to find strategies that ensure the inclusion local women’s voices and proposals in prevention, mediation, resolution of conflict and post-conflict reconstruction. Respecting the cultural norms of each local context is a responsibility of all peacekeepers, military, civilian and police.


To accomplish these tasks, the presence of female peacekeepers is essential, seeing as they are more approachable and can become role models. Nonetheless their presence is not exhaustive, nor does it exonerate male peacekeepers from being actively involved in gender promotion.


Promoting a gender perspective in peacekeeping missions is not an aim only for women, whether military or civilian staff. All peacekeepers need to jointly work to achieve it and in order to do so, they need to be provided with adequate tools. This is when gender training comes into play.