How do Empowered Voices challenge gender roles? Cooking contest for men of course!

The four brave men who took the challenge to cook. And the judge is capturing everything on his camera.

The four brave men who took the challenge to cook. And the judge is capturing everything on his camera.

We were inspired by a Ted talk sent to us by my friend Ingela Flatin on malnutrition. The talk is by Raj Patel and he has an interesting story from Malawi. Because of all the tasks that women in poor rural communities have on their daily agenda breast feeding and healthy cooking are not always priorities and therefore malnutrition becomes a problem. In the project in Malawi they came up with the idea that men need to be involved in cooking - but how do you make them do that? By arranging competitions of course! This makes it fun and the men learns how much work cooking and kitchen duties actually is. This is a really smart way of challenging the gender roles and to reinvent what it is to be a man - as Raj Patel puts it. And it is important because we know that stunting in children increases with gender inequality. If you want to watch the Ted talk follow this link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pP5tZc9-JIg

So how did this take place in Empowered Voices? Well, the group was already gathered and had attended an event with AgriProFocus which is an international organizations for farmers that focus a lot on gender equality. AgriProFocus agreed to help out and be the judges, and four of our brave guys were given the challenge of making eggs and juice for their sick wives. The contest was a big success and the men took the competition very seriously. The rest of the group cheered along and really enjoyed the happening :) We hope to do this again at a later time with more participants but for now you can enjoy these photos of the brave quartet.