Capacity Enhancement to achieve Gender Equality and Women Empowerment in the Medical Sector in developing countries


MSM and the Elisabeth Strouven Fund have been partners for many years. With the support of the Fund, MSM was able to set up activities in developing countries, with a specific focus on gender equality and women empowerment in the medical sector.

In 2018 and 2019 through the Elisabeth Strouven Fund several Gender and Female Talent Development Trainings took place in Ethiopia and Bangladesh offered by Dutch, Ethiopian and Bangladeshi experts. We are happy to continue the partnership in 2020 with new funding to set up more activities to support gender equality in the health sector, building forward on and scaling up previous achievements.

Gender training courses and curricula development in Ethiopia
For the Black Lion hospital, the most influential hospital in the medical sector with a strong reputation in Ethiopia, MSM will capacitate the existing staff on gender skills and knowledge, necessary to handle gender courses for both undergraduate and postgraduate education for around 1200 students per cohort. Furthermore, we will develop curricula for specific gender courses and help establish and train a core group of trainers, who can impart the gender training to undergraduate and postgraduate students in a sustainable manner.

Following the development of the teaching guide on gender in medical professions for postgraduate seminars, we will support the Black Lion Hospital/Health Sciences College of Addis Ababa University in further continuation and mainstreaming of this work. We will help the college setting up a first seminar on gender and health, for it to become a twice-yearly mandatory event. An action plan will be developed, together with staff and management, on how gender-sensitive patient contact and care can be mainstreamed in the medical education and ensured in the actual profession.

Finally, enforced by the strong reputation of the Black Lion Hospital we will continue working with the core group on networking and knowledge sharing to build capacity with other academic hospitals in Ethiopia. 

Expanding gender knowledge and skills in at the Dhaka Shishu Hospital in Bangladesh
To continue expanding the gender knowledge and skills of the Dhaka Shishu Hospital staff, another group than the 2019 group will receive a gender related training. However, the 2019 group will receive a refresher course to refresh their knowledge on the topic. From both groups a selective group will receive a more in-depth and extensive training. Apart from broadening and deepening their knowledge, this group will also be prepared to become trainers themselves to train their colleague staff and students in the future on gender and health.

Furthermore, an internal taskforce will be created, with engagement of management and the trained core trainers, to follow up on gender issues and make sure that gender mainstreaming and female talent development remain a priority. With this task force, the team will start assessing whether policies exist related to gender and sexual harassment. Also, a start will be made in ensuring that all strategies and policies in the hospital become gender sensitive.

When all trainings have been completed in the Dhaka Shishu Hospital, the team will identify a new academic hospital to conduct the starter gender awareness training.

Setting up an online expert network
MSM will support the development of a platform for gender experts in the medical sector. The core target group for the platform at the onset will be the Master Trainers from Ethiopia, Bangladesh, with trainers from the Netherlands as facilitator and to encourage activities and sharing of experience, information, good practice and lessons learned. Since MSM has a considerable number of projects on a worldwide scale with engagement of local experts, it has the ambition to gradually expand the platform to enlarge its geographical coverage.

The projects funded by the Elisabeth Strouven Foundation are led by MSM’s Associate Consultant and Gender Expert Ms. Herma Majoor.

About the Elisabeth Strouven Fund
The Elisabeth Strouven Fund supports and contributes to the welfare and development of citizens and societies in Maastricht and surroundings. The fund also supports small-scale projects in developing countries.

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