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UNOPS and UN Women hosted groundbreaking workshop on gender-responsive and resilient infrastructure in Bangladesh

In a landmark collaboration, the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and UN Women have hosted a pivotal event titled “Pathways to Progress: Strengthening Bangladesh through Gender Responsive and Resilient Infrastructure”  as part of the National Resilience Program (NRP).

Funded by the Government of Sweden and the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) of the United Kingdom, the event took place on Sunday  from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm (September 17, 2023) at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel in Dhaka.

The central theme of this event revolved around enhancing gender equality and resilience in infrastructure development in Bangladesh, aligning with the Sustainable Development Goal 5 – Gender equality.

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Dr. Md. Sarwar Bari, director general of the Local Government Division’s Monitoring, Inspection, and Evaluation Wing, was present as the chief guest.

He stated that resilience is a key component of sustainable infrastructure. Gwyn Lewis, the UN Resident Coordinator in Bangladesh attended as a special guest for the opening ceremony, further underlining the significance of this initiative. During her speech, she remarked that infrastructure should consider diversity, accessibility, and cost.

Sk. Md. Mohsin, chief engineer of Local Government Engineering Department and Md. Mizanur Rahman, director general, Department of Disaster Management were featured as the special guests.

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The workshop component of the event provided an in-depth understanding of the Gender Marker Toolkit and its pivotal role in fortifying gender-responsive and resilient infrastructure in Bangladesh. It served as a beacon of progress toward achieving gender equality and ensuring that the infrastructure investments made cater to the unique needs and challenges faced by women and marginalised groups.

The event also emphasised the far-reaching consequences of gender-blind infrastructure, highlighting its impact on access to essential services and the urgency of ensuring equitable access for all members of society. Gitanjali Singh, Country Representative for UN Women, stated that a smart Bangladesh required gender-smart infrastructure.

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Sudhir Muralidharan, Country Manager, UNOPS Bangladesh said, “As we gather here today, we recognize the immense potential of resilient and inclusive infrastructure to transform Bangladesh and drive sustainable development.”

This event showcased the unwavering commitment of UNOPS and UN Women to promoting gender equality, social inclusion, and sustainable development in Bangladesh through resilient and inclusive infrastructure.

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