1. Vulnerable Communities Focused by the Project
At the core of the RtF Project are the vulnerable and marginalised communities – and in particular those who are affected by the RtF violations and thus facing severe challenges for food security and threatened livelihood. We will work closely with the strengthening, social mobilisation and empowerment of the affected communities and take support/collaborate with local CSOs and stakeholders in the process of reducing the RtF violations for realising the RtF.
These communities and groups are however not limited to: low income and/or limited / marginalised resource based communities e.g. Dalits, indigenous peoples, people living with HIV/AIDS, landless and small holder farmers on seed/agriculture issues, agri-labourers, urban poor, victims of natural disasters, displacement of traditional livelihood occupations/base. Particularly vulnerable within these groups are women and children.
Issues at stake for these groups include: Restricted and discriminatory access to natural and productive resources and services, displacement due to state policies / actions or evictions by landowners, insecurity of land tenure, insufficient monitoring of industrial activity, low /inappropriate wages (informal sector), inadequate policies and programmes for the displaced on rehabilitation and resettlement, inequitable food supply and distribution system, (most vulnerable often are not reached).
Aside the 6 caseworks continued, of which 1 is envisaged nearing exit stage/ handover to local CSOs/RtF Network, another on RtF of Women /forced eviction on land is planned. The caseworks being the core of FIAN Nepals work /approach along with policy advocacy – will focus on raising and facilitating RtF of the most affected communities – primarily in the Midwest and Central region of Nepal.
The communities and cases of RtF violations will be planned in the 1st quarter of the upcoming project and is a continuous process.
2. Gender and Social Inclusion in Programme
Though the formal equality of women and men is enshrined in international binding law and is also found in national legislation, women, and particularly rural women do not enjoy equality regarding access to food and resources – natural or productive to feed themselves. Rural women in particular face gender based discriminations. The recent decade of conflict and post conflict with poor economic performance of the country has further increased the “feminisation” of agriculture. Still a patriarchal and conservative thinking model and structure which do not acknowledge women’s important role for securing food and livelihood is prevalent. Women are thus marginalised into poverty from the multiple exclusions, while also the lack of nutritional food affecting health – especially of pregnant women and infants is further propounded by socio-cultural practices.
The principle of non-discrimination is strongly underlined by Art.2 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), and women’s rights on food related resources are recognized in the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). Both references are important tool to support local or national struggles for the right to food of women at the international level.
The issues and cases on RtF violations and advocacy will have stronger analysis and focus on the right to food of women within the affected communities and at general policy analysis and option generation to address their RtF. The ongoing preparation for the CEDAW reporting the RtF of Women by FIAN Nepal (for July 2011) aims to contribute to strengthen this aspect. Cases of RtF Violations of Women – urban and rural areas are to be focused in the upcoming phase.
The Gender Strategy of FIAN overall (2006) and strategy of FIAN Nepal (strategy discussion session of May 2011) has further emphasised on the gender considerations in particular the RtF of marginalised women.
3. Partners – Stakeholders and Collaborators
Promoting and strengthening the right to food in Nepal is all concerning issue for which collaborative actions is required with multiple stakeholders (intermediaries) starting at local and district to national and international level. Some of the key collaborators are:
The collaborations are in different forms – to promote and advocate for strengthening the RtF, monitor the RtF violations and remedial measures for it, including creating space and participating in policy discussion, options and monitoring of specific government programmes related to food and nutrition security.
Local CSOs are working closely with the vulnerable communities and engage them in promoting and monitoring the RtF realisation process while collaborating with local government/line agencies. From our experience the district/regional media in particular are effective in raising the RtF related issues and violations.
The formation of many RtF Network district level and strengthening their capacities to advocate and monitor district /VDC planning/budget allocation processes as well to access resources /services is critical to support vulnerable communities and the general RtF related concerns of the district. For collaborations and joint activities FIAN Nepal will promote the practice of resource sharing – in particular within the RtF Networks.
Collaborations with human rights defenders’ organisations (focusing on ESCR in particular) and CSOs working in the field of strengthening the livelihood options and natural resources base of vulnerable communities, along with media and legal practitioners all are important actors to bring about changes in related policies, monitor progress and advocate the RtF in Nepal. FIAN Nepal will actively seek support and solidarity and develop strategic links with Networks and Forums– nationally and internationally to strengthen the advocacy of RtF. The ongoing process of CSOs who at present in selected districts are taking up RtF related activities – will be continued in this project.
Equally important is the advocacy and lobby work to government – the duty bearers for appropriate policy development, implementation and monitoring. Collaboration with the related government agencies, parliamentarians/ politicians – policy makers and national and international human rights institutions in particular the National Human Rights Commission, the judiciary/lawyers and key donors and UNCHR has facilitated accessing resources and services by the affected communities and contributing to realise the RtF.
As such different stakeholders are being targeted as key actors and supporters and by creating interfaces among them and mobilising synergies, the Project aims to contribute significantly to the intended impact.
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