#IWD2020 Feature: Celebrating our team - Carole Attoungbre
To celebrate International Women's Day 2020 - #EachforEqual - we are featuring some of our amazing team, celebrating their accomplishments and asking how they are helping to forge a gender equal world.
Carole Attoungbre: Research Assistant, Côte d’Ivorie
Carole works as a Research Assistant for Taysha Consulting while preparing an MSc in International Strategy and Diplomacy at London School of Economics (LSE). Before joining LSE, Carole has graduated from an MSc in Business Management from Lyon Business School France, has worked as a Strategy Consultant for both the public and the private sector and has led a social enterprise aiming at improving access to education in Africa.
*Why is working on gender issues important to you?*
Having worked across the private and the public sector in various African countries, I have often noticed that some of the basic social problems and poverty situation are entangled in a gender equality issue.
Above the fact that addressing gender equality issues and making sure women and men’s rights are equally considered is a matter of human rights, doing so also allows making the world a better place.
I come from a community in Côte d’Ivorie where women usually take care of the whole family. They cook, look after the children, clean the house, cultivate the land and sometimes still find time to run a small business.
If a woman is not educated, no matter what the reason is, it means that the whole family (and hence the community) is exposed to bad practices for cooking, water management, cleaning etc. Which can lead to issues like malnutrition or other diseases (like cholera...). It also often means that the children she is taking care of will not get a good education thereby perpetuating the bad practices.
If a woman doesn't know how to manage the money or doesn't have access to opportunities to work, create or run a business, this divest the household from an additional income, which sometimes would have been enough to lift them out of poverty.
If a woman doesn't have a say in the community, it means that the decisions that are being taken will not reflect the needs and concerns of half of the concerned population... And so on!
Addressing any development issues means understanding its underlying gender issue in order to cover the full scope of the matter.
So many pieces of evidence have shown that there is no sustainable development without tackling the gender issues, that we can no longer ignore it.
For example, in a report on Côte d'Ivoire edited in 2017, the World Bank concluded that supporting women was the key to unlock the country emergence and estimated that "Policies Supporting Gender Parity Could Bring $6-8 Billion to the Country’s Economy".
*How do you see the role of women in development?*
Recent work from the World Bank and from many development agencies points out the need to improve the Human Capital in developing countries in order to build a more sustainable and shared development.
Because they are at the core of every community, women can play an important role in development if they are empowered to do so, by bringing different perspectives in addressing the development issues, raising their voice and advocating for more gender equality oriented approach of development and becoming role models for other women.