Gender-transformative approach

Gender transformative approaches seek to challenge gender inequality by transforming harmful gender norms, roles and relations, while working towards redistributing power, resources, and services more equally.

Both gender-transformative approach and sexual and reproductive health and rights contribute to promoting a holistic understanding of well-being, autonomy, and equality for individuals in the realm of sexuality.

A gender-transformative approach refers to a comprehensive and intentional approach that aims to challenge and change the deep-rooted norms, attitudes, and power dynamics that create gender inequalities. Instead of merely addressing surface-level gender disparities, a gender-transformative approach seeks to create substantial and lasting changes in the ways that societies perceive, treat, and interact with gender.

This approach recognizes that gender inequality is connected to social, economic, and political structures. It acknowledges that the roles and expectations assigned to individuals based on their gender impact all aspects of their lives, and that these roles are often unequal and restrictive. This may cause barriers in achieving services, education and possibilities in participating in decision-making.

A gender-transformative approach involves questioning and challenging traditional gender norms and roles. It seeks to challenge and reshape traditional gender norms that dictate expectations and behaviors related to sexuality. This includes addressing harmful stereotypes, discrimination, and societal pressures that affect how individuals express their sexual identities and desires. By challenging stigma and shame gender-transformative approach recognizes the harm caused by repressive gender norms and stereotypes can negatively impact individuals’ sexual health and rights by preventing open communication, seeking information, and accessing healthcare.

A central aspect of gender-transformative approach is the promotion of bodily autonomy. This involves acknowledging and respecting individuals’ choices regarding their sexual partners, practices, and reproductive decisions.

With gender-transformative approach it is possible to challenge power dynamics that are enabler to sexual and gender based violence.

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UNFPA Gender transformative approaches to achieve gender equality and sexual and reproductive health and rights
Rutgers’ gender-transformative approach