Left photo: Atty. Analiza R. Teh, DENR Undersecretary for Climate Change Service and Mining Concerns and Chair, National GAD Focal Point System emphasizing the inclusion of gender concerns in the 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). Right photo: The participants as they listen to the presenter during the 1st International Conference on Gender Mainstreaming. (photos by John Alfonso M. Abrenilla, LESD)

In order to promote women’s partnership and participation in sustaining the environment, the ERDB- Gender and Development Focal Point System conducted the 1st International Conference on Gender Mainstreaming for Health and Wellness Promoting Clean Environment on November 27-28, 2019 at the New World Manila Bay Hotel, Manila.

There were four sub-themes of the Conference such as: 1) knowledge, skills and education in environmental management and conservation, 2) policies and partnership for clean environment and social protection, 3) capacity of women and men in coping with environmental degradation and 4) environmental impact on health and wellness among women and men.

ERDB Director Sofio B. Quintana welcomed the delegates from different countries consisting of China, Indonesia, Liberia, India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Lao PDR, Timor Leste and Philippines. He said, “Since 2014, the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau have embraced gender responsiveness for development programs and activities of Women in Development, Gender and Development, and now the Gender Mainstreaming.”

DENR ASEC Corazon C. Davis, Asst. Secretary for Policy and Planning Service gave a message and mentioned that health is vital in all gender-related policies. ASEC Davis said, “It is my pleasure to see a progressive and radical pool of environmental scientists, experts, researchers, public servants, officials and friends who are gathered here today knowing the value of inclusivity of both men and women.”

Atty. Analiza R. Teh, DENR Undersecretary for Climate Change Service and Mining Concerns and Chair, National GAD Focal Point System also gave a message. She said, “We need to mainstream gender right into the protective strategies so that we gain greater chances of including gender in the solutions and implementations. The 2030 agenda for sustainable development calls upon us for an approach that interlinks gender inclusive socioeconomic environment with environmental protection, health care and well-being.”

Dr. Lynlei L. Pintor gave the overview of the conference. She mentioned that the conference highlights the importance of gender studies on addressing environmental issues including gender inequalities.

Atty. Eric Paul J. Peralta, Director of the UPLB Gender Center and Dr. Mary Ann Pollisco-Botengan, a freelance consultant were the plenary speakers during the conference.

ERDB Asst. Director Mayumi Quintos Natividad opened the exhibit and expressed her hope that the exhibit will stimulate their interest in mainstreaming gender in all their activities.

Overall, there were 15 poster and 25 paper presentations in the conference. An open forum followed after the presentations.

Dr. Lynlei Pintor presented the synthesis and way forward/research gaps on the last day of the conference. Then, For. Mayumi Quintos-Natividad, ERDB Asst. Director conveyed the closing message. Marla V. Cambay, TTD