Putting gender equality at the heart of social protection

Lessons from Oxfam GB's experience with safety net programming

Grace Ondieke, a mother of 3, sits in her house in Mukuru informal settlement, in Nairobi, Kenya. Photo Credit: Sam Tarling
Paper author: 
Nupur Kukrety and Sumananjali Mohanty
Paper publication date: 
Thursday, May 12, 2011

The economic and food crises have dramatically increased the number of chronically poor people globally, rendering many more vulnerable to destitution should they experience even small shocks to income and food supply. In response, Oxfam in Kenya extended its work on social protection, which included a strong gender analysis component, from an initial focus on those living in food insecure geographical areas - subject to drought, for example - and applied it in a wider context. This article focuses on the urban safety net programme, in Nairobi, Kenya, the aims of which were to improve access to food for the most vulnerable households in two informal settlements in Nairobi, and to develop more long-term food and income security initiatives.