Photo: Women in Rajasthan, India wait in line to vote in the panchayat elections in 2015.
As part of the Peer Learning Process of the Local Governance Initiative and Network (a SDC initiative), The Hunger Project-India has been guiding and training the Bhutan Network for Empowering Women (BNEW), an organization that has been leading the process of building leadership capacities of women and encouraging their participation in electoral processes and politics in the country since 2015.
As part of this partnership, The Hunger Project-India has hosted a delegation from Bhutan to India, carrying out trainings for various government officials from different departments in Bhutan.
The Hunger Project-India and BNEW have been working together to build capacity of Elected Women Representatives (EWR), and exchange ideas, experiences and the successes of women in India. The partnership now involves the sharing and transferring of the The Hunger Project’s strategy, “Strengthening women’s empowerment through electoral processes (SWEEP)”, to BNEW.
The Bhutan government transitioned from a monarchy to a democracy in 2008. This year, Bhutan is having its’ second democratic elections for local governments, which gives BNEW the opportunity to apply the approach behind the SWEEP campaigns, and build the leadership and capacity of EWRs in Bhutan.
In January 2016, The Hunger Project-India developed a Gender Training Program to improve women’s empowerment in Bhutan, which involved officials from several government departments. The Hunger Project-India is also conducting a four-day training to build capacity of community leaders in Bhutan.