HOMEFrom Vienna to New York: Diverging attitudes and expectations among NPT members spell trouble for the 2015 NPT Review Rob van Riet
Is Cyberwar Really War? Thomas Wagner-Nagy
Men Who Hate Women: Gender, Empathy, & Power in The United States' Rape Culture Brett Goldberg
Prospects of Amalgamating the SADC and SACU Jephias Mapuva
The Systems View of Life: A Science for Sustainable Living Fritjof Capra
Refugee Protection under Islamic Law Fausto Aarya De Santis
Democracy if necessary but not necessarily democracy Gerald Caplan
RECENT ARTICLES The Role of Regional Integration in Fighting Crime and Terrorism: The Case of the African Union’s (AU’s) Initiatives, 1999-2014 Conrad John Masabo, Marobe Wama, and Tekla Paul Mlyansi
Hong Kong: Between Democracy and Autocracy Raluca Batanoiu
Far-Right Parties in the European Parliament Thomas Wagner-Nagy
Challenges and prospects of AU to implement the Ezulwini Consensus: The case of collective security and the use of force Tunamsifu Shirambere Philippe
Zimbabwe's new constitutional dispensation and children's right to education Loveness Mapuva and Jephias Mapuva
Voices from Syria Keith Gentry
Key Debates in Food and Agriculture Brian Dowd Uribe (editor)
Douglas Janoff on LGBTQIA Human Rights Luciana Téllez
The slow peace process in Darfur: A call to turn to the local Rose Mutayiza
Costa Rica's Emphasis On Cars Challenges Environmental Narrative Joe Baur
Militarist Bumkum Paul Craig Roberts
Water Security in the Sixaola River Basin Adrián Martinez Blanco and Diana Ubico Durán
Tolstoy at the Mir Centre for Peace—the Long Tradition Myler Wilkinson
United Nations Quiz, March 2014 Ross Ryan and Hye Young Kim
Past Research Summary
Fuel Efficient Stoves and the Reduction of Gender-Based Violence in Darfur IDP Camps
June 18, 2014
Gender-based violence against women is a wide-spread phenomenon in Darfur. Victim of the Janjaweed militia, refugee women who leave the camps to collect firewood are further victimized because of the social stigma. In order to reduce such type of crimes against humanity the use of fuel efficient stoves is recommended. The success of such approach to secure the improvement of women’s situation cannot be achieved without the contribution of the non-profit organizations and international community. A theory of change in that setting will require women’s empowerment and their involvement as leaders within the specificities of the Darfuri traditional context. The purpose of this paper is to provide a theoretical framework for the success of the generalization of the fuel efficient stoves within the community while providing all the necessary support for the success of such endeavor.
Continuously subject to marginalization and structural violence since the Condominium Period, the province of Darfur not only suffered severe drought, but also a brutal repression of the rebellion broke out against the status quo, in 2003. Unfortunately, like in many internal conflicts, the civilian population has paid a heavy toll because of the Sudanese counter-insurgency strategy. Building on a fundamentalist ideology, the central government resorted to the Janjaweed militia for the launching of widespread attacks to “murder men, rape and torture women, abduct children, burn homes, and loot crops and cattle” (Corcoran, 2008, pp. 203). The increase of sexual violence against women (see Figure 1), especially of African descent (Hagan, Rymond-Richmond & Palloni, 2009), even if oftentimes under-reported, is pervasive.
Although gender-based violence studies have proliferated, there seems to be little research made in refugee camps settings, though “cases of rape and violence against women in Darfur […] are well documented” (Fetters, 2005), and it is well known that most of them are exposed to sexual assault when obligated to fetch the firewood needed to sustain their families in the encampments.
In the following paper, I argue that the use of fuel-efficiency stoves in the camps is necessary in order to reduce gender-based violence against women outing for wood collection. I submit that the fruitful introduction of such technology ultimately depends on women’s involvement in the process, and that the creation of subsistence markets along with security enforcement to protect females’ trips outside the camps are sine qua non conditions to the success of developmental work aiming at their promotion in the Internally Displaced Camps. For the purpose of this paper, I will successively discuss the necessity to introduce fuel efficient stoves, the need for gender equality promotion, as well as the contribution of the international development agencies to the success of this endeavor.
Since the outburst of the conflict in Darfur, the governmental militia known as the Janjaweed has used sexual violence against women to wage war, on behalf of the government, against the rebel factions in the region. Subsequently to forced displacement, most of the Darfuri population lives in refugee camps, as their villages have been burnt down. In order to prepare their daily meals, essentially made up of millet, women are obliged to walk no less than 5 miles a day for firewood collection, which corresponds to an average of 25 hours per week (Amrose, Kisch, Kirubi, Woo & Gadgil, 2008), risking rape, mutilation and sexual abduction by the Janjaweed. In order to avoid high temperatures and competition over scarce branches and roots, women usually travel alone or in small groups (Patrick, 2007). And even if the authority positions in the camps are held by men, women, who are quite often head of the household, decide to risk their lives because males are oftentimes killed by the Janjaweed if they venture outside the camps (Amnesty International, 2008).
Despite records provided by different organizations, like Medecins Sans Frontieres, most rape cases remain under-reported by the victims who fear abandonment and social ostracism. Research indicates that:
“around one in twenty rape cases will result in unwanted pregnancy. Many others result I desertion by husbands and/ or in such chronic health problems as pelvic inflammatory disease, HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. Psychological and physical trauma and malnutrition put rape victims at risk of miscarriage. Lack of access to health and contraceptive services cause women to seek unsafe abortions – with potentially grave complications- rather than carry a child to term” (Fetters, 2005,pp. 48).
According to Human Rights Watch, “despite the existence of clear standards for responding to sexual and gender-based violence […] humanitarian agencies are not implementing these guidelines on a systematic basis in Darfur” (Fetters, 2005, pp.48) by providing the emergency contraceptive pills to the victims within the required 72 hours to prevent pregnancy. Because this very affordable option is not provided to women by the NGOs there, women are generally compelled to resort to hazardous abortions, mainly because the Sudanese law puts strict restrictions on permissible medical interventions. In fact, medical abortion is only possible in three situations: to save the mother’s life, when the raped woman decides she wants to abort within 90 days of the pregnancy, or if the child deceased in a female womb.
For all these reasons and in order to prevent rape, dangerous health issues and social stigma, there is a need to reduce and, eventually, eliminate the dominant cause of potential sexual assault by deterring women from going to firewood collection. In order to do so, it is vital to replace the “three-stones” fireplace, traditionally used for cooking, by a fuel efficient stoves. In order to discuss the matter, I will respectively look into the issue of sex-violence against women, the necessity of their association in introducing this type of technology, and the means to achieve this objective.
In addition to being precarious, women’s situation in the Darfuri refugee camps worsens as rape and abduction are part of their daily life when outing for firewood collection. While the literature on gender-based violence in conflict zones is abundant, aggressions against females in the premises of refugee camps remains under-reported, usually because the victims often prefer not to report it (Fetters, 2005). The following is review of the literature which illuminates the tackling of the topic object of the current essay.
Fetters (2005) and many others contend that female refugees are often victims of sexual abuse and/or abduction when they leave the camps to fetch the firewood they need to feed their families. She argues that because of the physiological, psychological and societal trauma, they are forced to opt for abortion. For this reason, she calls for the necessity to provide them with all the support and help necessary to prevent further victimization, as indicated by the WHO/UNHCR protocols.
With regards to the frequency of gender-based violence, Ward and March (2006) investigate why rape during conflict has become so rife in these recent years. In addition to that, they discuss the different roles of sexual slaves as well as the risks they encounter when they decide to run away from their abductors. They also pinpoint to the limited protection women have within the premises of IDP camps in addition to the impact of gender-based violence on the victims. They also design a multi-sectoral model to address gender-based violence, apply it to specific cases, and deplore the absence of interventions assessments meant to reduce or eliminate such aggressions.
In discussing Darfur, Corcoran (2008) illuminates the Sudanese genocidal use of the Janjaweed militia to crush the Darfuri rebellion, through the systematic sexual violence against women, and argues the obligation of the moral obligation the international community to resort to the legal system, mainly through the International Criminal court, in addition to a targeted humanitarian aid destined to women survivors. Besides healthcare, she suggests the development of economic opportunities to address the long-term economic and social needs as well as a more effective military protection.
In his article about gender-based violence in Darfur and South Sudan, Abusharaf (2006) argues that the failure to create a national identity after the independence of the country lead to crimes against humanity in the former Sudan, especially with the adoption of the Sharia Law. He underscores that in the case of Darfur, sexual abuse is under reported because women fear community ostracism. He also discusses the situation of “minority cultures” who are equally victims because of the same legal system. He also contends that because of the same religious issue, females have their economic right to sustain themselves stripped. On the other hand, he contends that their status as displaced persons also enables them to create agency, empower themselves under the umbrella of international law.
Cattaneo and Chapman, (2010) revisit the empowerment process, its different aspects and suggest a model in which many components and situational elements affect each other. For this reason, they uphold the necessity to incorporate the personal and social aspects in any empowerment process, which include individually meaningful and power-oriented goals. They advocate the importance of elements like self-efficacy, knowledge, action determination and assessment as the core elements of successful empowerment processes.
De La Puente (2011), on the other hand, affirms that women, who constitute the majority of the IDP camps population in Darfur, are under-represented in leadership roles because of the patriarchal structure of the society. She elucidates the impact of their role in this environment as it has shifted to that of the main household provider. The author illuminates the necessity to reinstate women leaders in the refugee camps.
Dessel, Rogge and Grlingrton (2006) argue in their article on promoting social change and justice that intergroup dialogue serves the exploration of societal issues to help improve social work in conflict settings. They discuss community-based settings and provide examples of their application in various contexts, and recommend considering such forums as a viable option for social work.
In their research covering a ten-year period, Abdelnour & Branzei, (2009) examined the creation and development of marketplaces as fuel-efficient stoves have been used in Darfur. Using primary and secondary data collection, they have identified the different types of stoves used in the region, women’s preferences and the shortages of developmental organizations as they promoted the various fuel efficiency stoves. They fostered the necessity of an adequate selection and distribution of the most popular stove among women through a clear delineation of the main purpose(s) of their promotion among the internally displaced persons.
For a better understanding of the problem object of this study and in order to provide a sustainable resolution to the issue, I will look into the matter from the following theoretical perspectives: The basic needs and decision theories, the self-determination theory, the situational leadership theory, and the development and radical feminism theories. I will also consider the gender equality perspective when building a theory of change approach.
Women’s outing for firewood collection can be explained from Maslow’s basic needs theory which counts, among the physiological ones, the need for food (See Figure 2). And because “needs may be reversed” (Erickson, 2001, pp.210), their decision is equally motivated by the growth needs, which include richness and self-sufficiency in a context where women are deeply in need to earn additional money to sustain themselves and their families in the camps. And with regards to self-determination theory, females are also subject to controlled motivation and extrinsic aspirations (Decif & Ryan, 2008).
From these viewpoints, they constrain themselves to venture outside the camps because of external contingencies, like family pressure, the fear of being punished for refusing to help out the family, or extrinsic aspirations related to the additional income they can make. Consequently and in relation to the theorem enounced in Maslow’s decision theory, they consider going outside the camps to fetch wood as the “optimal action” (Erickson, 2001, pp.211)
For the purpose of reducing sexual-violence against women who risk their lives outside the camps, I will build on a theory of change approach through the “articulation of the underlying beliefs and assumptions that guide service delivery strategy and are believed to be critical for producing change and improvement” (INSP, 2005). Building on development feminism understanding that “gendered divisions of labor in developing countries is the outcome of a long history of colonialism” in addition to the liberal feminsim theory which claims that “gender differences are not based in biology…and that women should have the same educational rights and work opportunities” (Lorbert, 1997), the best strategy to positively impact the situation is to undertake a gender equality approach of the resolution of the problem at hand. Among all the main approaches identified by the Association Quebequoise des Organismes de Cooperation Internationale (AQOCI) (See Figure 3) it is recommended to protect the women from a human right perspective by increasing their power “in terms of heightened capacity, to assert their needs, demands and priorities” (AQOCI, 2005).
From this perspective and in order to ameliorate females status, radical feminism, which calls for the creation of “women-only spaces where women can think and act” (Lorbert, 1997), the emergence of women leaders in the camp will enable a targeted discussion of their situation as well as a brainstorming of the best solutions to meet their physiological, safety and security needs. The advancement of their cause will be better served through the emergence female leaders in the camps. According to the situational leadership theory (Clark, 2006) women will adjust their leadership tactics to the particularities of the Darfuri socio-cultural context by impacting the “cultural sex” societal construct existing in their community simply by modifying their leadership tactics to the cultural readiness of their fellow male refugees.
Women and Sexual-Violence in Darfur
During armed conflict, sexual violence takes many forms. Among the sixteen types identified by Schneider (2008), Darfuri women are quite often subject to multiple rape, sexual mutilation and slavery. For the purpose of terrorizing the populations, sexual abuse is frequently used by the Janjaweed in order to drive out entire communities from their villages, or dissuade male activists from carrying on their insurgency. This has become the norm in the region and in other conflict settings because of the “collapse in social and moral order that accompanies war” (Ward & Marsh, 2006). And whenever rape is meant to destroy communal bonds and maximize shame and humiliation, this type of gender-based violence against women is perpetrated in public either to satisfy a physical need, or simply to demonstrate power or domination. In many instances, the aggressions take place in front of male family members as reported by a Darfuri of African descent:
“In February 2004, I abandoned my house because of the conflict. I met six Arabs in the bush. I wanted to take my spear to defend my family, but they threatened me with a weapon and I had to stop. The six men raped my daughter, who is 25 years old, in front of me, my wife and young children” (Ward and Marsh, 2006, pp. 3)
In addition to the above-mentioned, “Cultural and religious taboos placing a high premium on chastity and so-called purity, dictating that women are “spoiled goods” if they have sex voluntarily or involuntarily outside of marriage, are socially, psychologically, and economically devastating to Darfur women” (Schneider, 2008). Furthermore and according to Fetters (2005), women in Darfur, who are often subject to rape multiple times, are subject to serious health issues. She argues that “around one in twenty rape cases will result in unwanted pregnancy. Many other result in desertion by husbands and/or in such chronic health problems as pelvic inflammatory disease, HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. Psychological and physical trauma and malnutrition put rape victims at risk of miscarriage. Lack of access to health and contraceptive services cause women to seek unsafe abortions-with potentially grave complications- rather than carry a child to term” (Fetters, 2005, pp.48).
Fuel Efficient Stoves and Subsistence Marketplaces
Due to of all the trauma women are exposed to because of firewood collection, this section will look at the fuel efficient stoves, recommend a specific type and discuss the optimum way to prevent further gender-based victimization in the IDP camps.
The Darfuri diet is quite basic. It usually consists of “kisra”, a type of thin bread, tea, and Arab coffee. The main meal known as “assida” is a mixture of millet, flour, sorghum and corn is traditionally cooked for hours in a round-bottomed pot on a “three-stones” fire. Since the beginning of the conflict, different types of stoves have been distributed to women in the camps. Among these are the Liquefied Petroleum Gas stove, the mud, the brick, the metal, the solar and Berkley-Darfur Stoves (BDS) (Abdelnour & Branzei, 2009) (see Figure 4).
Of the different technologies used, the mud stove appears to be the most popular in the camps. This is essentially due to the fact that this type is very affordable, and its production is possible thanks to material available locally. Besides the fact that they cost between $1 and $3 apiece, their fabrication is rendered much easy by the fact that women can also teach one another how to use build them. Despite these apparent advantages and according to the Blum Center for Developing economies, the metal stove- also known as the Berkeley Darfur Stove- will better respond to the needs of the population, because it fits different size pots (see Annex) and use 75% less wood than an open fire (Sheridan, 2007). According to the study developed by the Berkeley team, in 2007, an average IDP household counting seven members would use about 5 Kg of fuel wood daily for a total cost SDD 200 (ie $0.80). And because they are obliged to sell their food rations to pay for firewood, the use of this type of fuel efficient stove is to save them about $222 annually. This will automatically double the disposable income of a typical household.
In addition to this economic gain, the BDS offer a considerable technical advantage because they are specifically designed to accommodate round-bottomed cooking pots (Amrose, Kisch, Kirubi, Woo & Gadgil, 2008). Consequently, women in the camps will not have to replace their traditional cooking utensils in favor of the flat-bottomed ones necessary to the cooking process in the original model designed in India, known as the Tara Model. (See Figure 5). Opting for the use of the BDS will not only protect women from possible aggressions, but also promote the creation of subsistence markets which will further empower them, as they decide for themselves on the efficacy of this type of FES.
Once women have determined on the most efficient stove, they will decide on the opportunity to create a demand that will certainly influence development organization’s work in promoting the type that best suits the refugees’ needs According to USAID (2006), the manufacturing cost per unit is $3 when local materials like clay, sorghum stems, dung, aluminum and water are used. If the community opts for the BDS, the cost will certainly reach $25 apiece (Sheridan, 2007), but the economy on firewood collection time and women endangerment will certainly be worth the price.
Furthermore and with reference to the World Economic Forum of 2009, the creation of subsistence marketplaces is a means to engage the impoverished communities as producers and consumers in order shake the “traditional stereotypes and mindsets about who they are and what they can accomplish”. From this perspective, empowering women in the IDP camps to choose the FESs which most meet their needs and by providing them with the necessary skills to operate, produce and sell them or any product it helped them manufacture with the available resources will enable them to earn the funds needed to sustain themselves and their families without resorting to firewood collection, as often as they used to. Because the refugee population in Darfur needs more than 300,000 stoves, a possible economic opportunity for the region would be the creation of multiple full-scale assembly shops” (Abdelnour Branzei, 2009). Such project would also help create jobs and income for the refugees while contributing to the safeguard of the environment.
Since women might keep fetching firewood to generate additional revenue, fuel efficient stove strategies must be complemented by additional income generating activities, while considering the Darfuri cultural specificities. This means taking into account two specific aspects. While the first one has to do with the image of the male as the main provider of the household, the second pertains to the customary and religiously accepted activities. In the first case, a special care should be given to economic activities perceived as genuinely feminine, or socially acceptable for womankind. As opposed to refugees in host countries, who are legally prevented to work, those in Darfur, because of their national affiliation, can work, sell products and/or provide services. From this viewpoint, camps management officials and NGOs can identify the most appropriate income generating activities. Unless the consumers are limited to fellow refugees, the coordination with the local government is necessary to identify potential markets and obtain the necessary authorizations. Then, resorting to grants, micro-credits or business loans can be determined.
In implementing the promotion and distribution of the locally produced or imported FESs, the best option, for those who cannot afford to purchase them, is to buy them through a lease to buy formula at a weekly cost of 25 cents. And if women learn to manufacture the stoves themselves, they will train each other, and eventually promote and sell them without external help. Consequently, they will lower their cost as supply and demand will enable market equilibrium, as they sell them in the neighboring markets.
In addition to the above-stated and in order to further protect women from gender-based violence, two additional initiatives can be implemented. The first one consists in teaching them how to save firewood using techniques to shorten cooking time. These include, putting stones on pot lids, cutting wood into small pieces, pre-soaking legumes, etc.(Women’s Commission for refugee Women and Children, 2006). The second one could complement this multi- sectoral approach in fighting sexual violence (Ward & March, 2006) through providing additional security to women when going to fetch firewood. In fact and because of the diminution of fuel wood consumption, the number of trips can be reduced and organized around two specific missions: firewood collection and income generating activities. In both situations, the contribution of the African Union Civilian Police and the Ceasefire Committee soldiers, in place since 2005, is necessary. And because of reported cases of sexual abuse by members of these two forces, male refugees’ contribution can be solicited for the sake of reassuring women during their trips outside the camps. With this regards, it is important to reframe the meaning of firewood collection around the idea of women’s protection so that men feel the responsibility to accompany them, under the escort of the armed Ceasefire Committee staff which are part of the convoys. And in case of income generating activities, like selling working in stove manufacturing facilities or selling goods, men’s responsibility will be associated with income generation through activities like promotion, marketing, or simply carrying the products to the selling points. In any case, women will be more protected against the Janjaweed, the international peacekeepers, the local authorities, the bandits and the like.
Role of the Development Agencies
According the Women’s Commission for Refugee Women and Children (2006), fuel-related initiatives undertaken, by different agencies, in refugee camps have proven to be problematic, mainly because most of the actors have different agendas and sets of interests. Because of the precarious situation in Darfur and the plethora of refugees and IDP camps, there is an imperative for the creation of a central agency, under the auspices of the UNHCR, for the purpose of selection of the FEF stove widely chosen by the population, based on the specific conditions of the region. Once done, the type of stove chosen is to be communicated, through the local office of the UN agency and the various camps’ management offices, to the INGOs in coordination with Sudanese local government agencies in the region.
Development agencies need; furthermore, to coordinate in order to avoid distributing stoves to the same refugee population. They have to cooperate with the local authorities, because of the necessary authorizations, in order to secure the other camps’ access to the same cooking technology. As the BDS can be rented for 50 cents per week (Abdelnour Branzei, 2009), I believe that its characteristics give it a competitive advantage compared to the other kinds. For this reason and unless a better one has been created, the NGOs should opt for the latest version of this model and uniform its distribution in Darfur with the lease to buy option or as a free donation for those who can afford it. Such uniformity will prevent any social stratification in the camps as all refugees will continue to share similar cooking experiences regardless of their former social status prior to displacement.
Protection Through Empowerment
The success of any FES program aiming at the protection of women against gender-based violence in Darfur cannot be realized without their active participation. The following section will explore the means of empowering women in the refugee camps for the purpose of implementing fuel efficient stoves and related strategies.
Critical to the improvement of the human condition of impoverished communities, empowerment is the mechanism needed to improve women’s situation in the IDP camps. In fact and despite their leading role in the refugee community as providers, the social structure maintains the traditional male supremacy. For this reason, the use of Cattaneo and Chapman’s empowerment process model to promote the change needed to prevent sexual-violence against women is recommended. In this context, the process is meant to build on the need for security and the relationship between women’s decision on the most appropriate type of fuel efficient stove, the creation of subsistence markets as well as men’s involvement in firewood collection.
From a socio-cultural perspective and building on female refugees’ specific situation in Darfur, the empowerment process is to secure a “meaningful increase in power” (Cattaneo & Chapman, 2010) to the women involved in the fuel efficient stove programs, especially that the family and tribal structures perpetuate the inequality between men and women in the camps despite the precariousness of the situation. From the standpoint of the Empowerment Process Model (see Annex E) and the social context has to be influenced through the combination of the necessary knowledge, competence and meaningful goals creations for women who need to be protected. This would translate into a clear information of the risks they face when gathering firewood, teaching them how to efficiently use the energy provided by this combustible to optimize the functioning of the FES besides undertaking actions to shift the mindset of the whole community about gender-role conception of firewood collection as a female activity.
In practice, women’s empowerment simply means “a process in which individuals learn to see a closer correspondence between their goals and a sense of how to achieve them, and a relationship between their efforts and life outcomes” (Cattaneo & Chapman, 2010). Calling upon their sense of agency, they will decide on the goals of their decision to choose a given model of FES, the type of knowledge and competence they need to have and acquire in order to efficiently take the course of action needed to reach their objective. They will also have to evaluate the success and limitations of their endeavors in order to adjust, improve or alter the decisions taken to effectively protect themselves from sexual abuse thanks to the adoption of a specific type of stove.
In order to raise awareness in the refugee community (Dessel, Rogge & Garlingon, 2006) about the seriousness of firewood collection hazards, inter-group dialogue involving both genders, tribal and camp leadership has to be undertaken. The purpose is to enable women to express their views about the negative impact of the cultural division of labor upon their health, lives and existence besides increasing males’ awareness. This safe communication forum can be duplicated at different levels within the community-based organizations, at the leadership levels and between the community leadership and the remaining of the community. External facilitators can contribute to unfolding of the process in order to secure that all the voices are heard. In relation to the FES decision, women will have the opportunity to express their fear, concerns and needs convinced that they will be comprehended. The use of well-trained facilitators will certainly secure the success of such process.
Once this process is undertaken, it is important for the female community to designate leaders able to convey their needs and take appropriate decisions concerning the acquisition of the fuel efficient stoves for the entire community. With regards to this specific point, it is important to underscore that even if refugee women outnumber men, they still remain under represented in leadership roles in the camps, because of the traditional structure of the Darfuri society. It is noticeable; however, that their role has been shifting since the outburst of the conflict, because most of them lost their male “guardians”. As the crisis in Darfur ultimately made of women the main household providers, this situation provided them with “new opportunities for leadership” in the decision-making structures (De La Puente, 2011).
It would be misleading to believe that female leadership is a new phenomenon in Darfur. Prior to British colonialism, Sheikas used to participate in the decision-making processes, before their role was reduced by the creation of the “Native Administration Structures”. And because the IDP camps are currently managed in the same way i.e. by providing leadership to Sheiks and Omdas (male leaders), it seems more than appropriate to reinstate Sheikas as spokespersons of womankind, in order to better represent the interests of women and actively contribute to the decision-making processes pertaining to their security, with regards to firewood collection, and interests as they relate to selecting fuel efficient stoves.
With reference to the success of the Kabkabiya project in Darfur (Abdelrahim, 2007), community-based organizations lead by women can also be created for the purpose of promoting the health and security benefits of the FES. Such entities can also contribute to the implementation of awareness and training workshops in close collaboration with women community leaders in the camps. The organizational performance of such organizations along with their capacity to involve larger groups of women will certainly provide more incentives to international actors, donors and development organizations and to better answer the needs and expectations of the female community as they relate to the main objectives of the FES.
With such integrative approach, the success of a program to generalize the use of FES in all the Darfuri refugee camps will certainly be successful. It has to be complemented with an ongoing assessment of the situation in the region as well as a cyclic evaluation of the progress made in gender-based violence deterrence. A key factor to such endeavor is the contribution of the development agencies to income generating programs with the help the help of local authorities, camp management officials with the crucial help of women organization, led by the Sheikas.
Gender-based violence against women is systematically used as a weapon to deter the rebel’s resistance in Darfur, despite the alarming reports of international organizations operating in the region. The collective action aiming at the introduction of affordable fuel efficient stove, like the Berkeley Darfur Stove, in one of the solutions offered to reduce prevalence of this crime against humanity. The empowerment of women is crucial to the process, but it has to be done through a theory of change which acknowledges the specificities of the Darfuri context. The help of the international community will have to go beyond that of a mere humanitarian aid provider, through a full-scale coordination effort aiming at increasing awareness, providing cooking means and strategies without ignoring the reinforcement of the security aspect as women will still have to leave the refugee camps for wood collection. This can only be possible if the highest instances of the international community, represented by the UN, provide their full support for such an endeavor.
Abdelnour, Samer & Branzei, (2010), Fuel-effiecient stoves for Darfur: The social construction of substance market placees in post-conflict settings, Journal of Business Research, pp 617-629.
Cattaneo, Lauren Bennett & Cahpman, Aliya, (2010), The process of Empowerment: A model for use in Research and Practice, George Mason University, 2010
Corcoran, Rebecca A., (2008), Justice for the forgotten: Saving the women of Darfur, Boston College Third World Law Journal, 2008.
Deci, Edward L. Deci & Ryan, Richard M., (2008), Self-Determination Theory: A Macrotheory of Human Motivation Development, and Health, University of Rochester, Canadian Psychology, 2008, Vol. 49, No. 3, pp 182-185.
Erickson, Gary, (1973), Maslow's basic need theory and decision theory, Stanford University.
Fetters, Tamara, (2005), Abortion care needs in Darfur and Chad, Forced Migration Review, 2007.
Hagan , John; Raymond-Richmind, Wenona & Palloni, Alberto, (2009), Increase of ethnic attacks graph: Article: racial targeting of sexual violence in Darfur
Park, Laurenn, (2010), Opening The Black Box: Reconsidering Needs Theory Through Psychoanalysis And Critical Theory, International Journal of Peace Studies, Vol 15, Number 1, Spring/Summer 2010.
Patrick, E. (2007). Sexual violence and firewood collection in Darfur. Forced Migration Review, (27), 40-41.
Schneider, Mary Deutsch, (2008), About Women, War and Darfur: The continuing question for gender violence justice, 2008.
Trepanier, Emmanuel & Bouchard, Marie Ginette, (2011), Promoting gender equality: From Theory To Practice, A training kit for international cooperation organizations, A publication of the "Gender in Practice" group, AQOCI.
Ward, Jeanne & Marsh, Mendy, (2006), Sexual Violence Against Women and Girls in War and Its Aftermath: Realities, Responses, and Required Resources, Symposium on Sexual Violence in Conflict and Beyond, 21-23 June 2006, Brussels (Belgium)
AbdelRahim, Shadia; Adam, Niemat, (2007), Source: Ahfad Journal . Jun2007, Vol. 24 Issue 1, p16-33. http://web.ebscohost.com/abstract?direct=true&profile=ehost&scope=site&authtype=crawler&jrnl=02554070&AN=32606155&h=Yoo875lJQ4o2RwBVi%2bq7cVd3JOUk7LUtkWUdnWz13QYlvPkNbdyeZmkgyi%2f6AGaghbi9mgHVWq0pVk3Fs4DTGw%3d%3d&crl=c
Focus on populations of humanitarian concern in the context of HIV (Project Dimitra) FAO , Guidance note: Gender-based violence and livelihood intervention.
The women's commission for refugee women and children (2006), Beyond firewood: fuel alternatives and protection strategies for displaced women and girls, (March 2006).
UNGA Resolution on Intensification of efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women, doc., A/REF/61/143, of 30 January 2007.
Sabrina Chikhi is a student at the Graduate School of Humanities and Social Sciences at Nova Southeastern University. She focuses on Africa, the MENA region and Latin America.