Gender and Development Desk (GADD)
The Gender and Development Desk (GADD) was created in 2018 under the Academic Affairs Office and is tasked to be the coordinating unit that will provide oversight in efforts to create gender-inclusive and gender-sensitive spaces and opportunities within the University. In compliance to the Commission on Higher Education’s Memorandum Order 1, series of 2015, entitled Establishing the Policies and Guidelines on Gender and Development in the Commission on Higher Education and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) and the implementation of the University’s policy on diversity and inclusion, the GADD seeks to contribute to the promotion of a culture of respect, tolerance, and acceptance within the University, fully aware that a deepened understanding of and sensitivity to gender-related issues help in eliminating experiences of gender-based violence.
Initial attempts to establish a Women’s Desk was started in 2007, with selected faculty members participating in relevant training courses at the University of the Philippines’ Women’s Desk and Miriam College’s Women and Gender Institute (WAGI). The above-mentioned memorandum order and University policy, however, provided the much-needed impetus that resulted in the institutionalization of the GADD.
The GADD aims to:
- Take the lead in educating the University’s stakeholders on gender issues and the University’s GAD program, projects, and activities;
- Implement activities that focus on gender-related issues and concerns;
- Coordinate with other offices and units within the University in designing interventions for gender-related issues and concerns;
- Collaborate with student organizations in promoting gender sensitivity and inclusivity in the campus; and
- Act as Secretariat in the investigation of gender-related cases.
Since its establishment, the GADD has organized independent projects under the Academic Affairs Office, including gender sensitivity trainers’ training and gender sensitivity workshops for faculty members. The Desk has also developed modules that are used for the University’s Wellness and Recreation Program, such as (1) Basic Gender Sensitivity Orientation Training; (2) Gender and the Law; (3) Gender and Culture; and (4) Gender and Relationships, which are facilitated by selected faculty members who are part of the pool of gender advocates. Over a thousand students have enrolled in the GAD-WRP modules since 2018. In 2019, the GADD worked with the Arts Cluster of the Institute of Arts (IAS) in a Stop Harassment Forum that is co-sponsored by the European Union. This was participated in by students from the University Belt area.
Similarly, the Desk also collaborated with the student organizations sg飞艇-Sexuality and Gender Alliance (sg飞艇-SAGA) and the sg飞艇 – Young Women’s Christian Association (sg飞艇-YWCA) in conducting gender-related seminar-workshops and activities. These activities included a stigma reduction training, a forum on women’s health, an exhibit on Consent, free HIV testing and counseling, and International Women’s Month Women’s March series.