The government of Kenya established the Affirmative Action Funds to foster social and economic equity for women and vulnerable groups. The funds include: Women Enterprise Fund (WEF) (National Gender and Equality Commission (NGEC), 2016), the National Government Affirmative Action Fund (NGAAF), Youth Enterprise Funds, Uwezo Fund and Access to Government Procurement Opportunities (AGPO) (Access to Government Opportunities (2021)). In addition, the provision of sanitary pads to school girls and efforts towards eradicating Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) (Anti-FGM Board (2021)) has been used to retain girls in school. Based on the policies and initiatives above, this study will establish barriers to WEE in Kenya and track the extent to which budgets and outlays are allocated in favour of women, i.e. Gender Responsive Budgeting.
In shaping decisions on WEE policy measures and their financing, as well as increasing government budget prioritisation towards WEE initiatives, IEA will engage with state and non-state actors, who include the following: the National Treasury, State Department of Planning State Department for Gender, State Department for Youth, State Department for Social Protection; National Gender and Equality Commission, Anti-FGM board, Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, Academia and research organisations, including KIPPRA, civil society organisations on governance -related work; the legislature, and Development Partners.
To create awareness and public discourse, the IEA team has organised two virtual webinars; one on International Women’s Day to celebrate women’s contribution to provision of public service during Covid-19 and the second to analyse Kenya’s performance in the global gender gap report 2021.