Gender Parity: A path towards Sustainability of #ZeroHunger

The ideal of gender equality has immense potential to solve many of the prevalent problems the world faces today. While we can work towards eradicating problems like hunger and malnutrition through varied means, the most practical approach would be the one that is most sustainable. One such approach is to make gender parity a reality. Gender parity can make a substantial contribution to a country’s economic growth, and it is the single most important determinant of food security.

Hunger and malnutrition means less productive individuals, who are more prone to disease and thus, often unable to earn more and improve their livelihoods. Moreover, such families belong to a conservative and narrow minded society and thus, have a heavily patriarchal mindset. Gender disparity forbids half of the world population from getting equal rights and opportunities to work towards a brighter future. We can make great advancements but as long as we don’t accept equality of genders, these efforts would only create greater divides and problems in the time to come. How can we affect change in the world when only half of it is invited or feels welcomed to participate in the conversation?

We must realize that empowering women and girls is the best pathway for a zero hunger generation. By investing more in women using an approach that is empowering and enlarges their freedoms, the gains accrue to all of society. It is clear that women’s access to productive resources leads to enhanced growth and improved outcomes for the next generation. Gender parity would open up immense opportunities for women, ensuring their households are much better off and hunger is no longer a concern. Easy access to education would ensure that women have greater awareness, can secure better employment and ultimately provide nutritious meals to their family. The positives are limited to not only the lower income families, but also extend to the middle and upper class families. A progressive and open minded society would ensure effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision making. This would enable women to contribute greatly to solve prevalent social problems, make great progress professionally, reach new heights and be respected.

 

–  Sivkan Singh Puri

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