Call us: 613.232.9459 | Email:

Gender Equality Mainstreaming Digest – January 2021 Issue

Here are the highlights of this month’s Gender Equality Mainstreaming Digest! Click HERE for the full version.

Winter scene. Photo courtesy of D. Ceplis.


Opportunities and Upcoming Events:

Many events are being cancelled or re-scheduled at the last minute due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please check each organization’s website or its social media site for up to date information.

Science Communications

What if you could get ANYONE interested in your work? Learn how to engage audiences with technical content using proven storytelling strategies in this engaging and hands-on workshop! Society for Canadian Women in Science and Technology (SCWIST) has partnered with American Academy of Forensic Sciences, University of Nevada, Reno, iWIST, SEDS/EEDS, Women in Tech World, Immigrant & International Women in Science, WISDOM Manitoba and WWest.

January 15: Science Communication Workshop 1: Engaging Broad Audiences. Learn how to engage both general and specialist audiences with your work using these proven storytelling strategies.

January 22: Science Communication Workshop 2: Science Story Development. Learn how to translate your personal experience or technical content into stories that are meaningful, memorable, and accurate.

January 29: Science Communication Workshop 3: Visual Science Storytelling. Learn how to create aesthetic and informative visuals, and take your slide decks, posters, and figures to a new level!

Rural Women’s Studies Association 14th Triennial Conference

From May 11 to 15, 2021, the RWSA is hosting their 14th Triennial Conference, Kitchen Table Talk To Global Forum Virtual Conference at the University of Guelph.

The RWSA is an international association to advance rural women’s / gender studies in a historical perspective. We welcome public historians, archivists, graduate students, rural organizations and communities as conference participants, as well as scholars from diverse fields, including sociology, anthropology, literature, Indigenous Studies, and history.

We encouraged submissions focusing on:

  • Rural women and mental health
  • Rural women and food justice
  • Indigenous women
  • Rural women and food tourism
  • Rural women and technological and biological innovation
  • Food production, preparation, rituals, hospitality, etiquette and display
  • Table talk issues concerning family, community, politics, legislation, and markets
This Month’s News:

Siblings circle back to the family farm

The year 2020 has been one of growth and experimentation for siblings Karen Pattington-LeRoy and Keith Pattington, operators of Circle Path Farm in Fournier, Eastern Ontario.

The brother-sister team, along with Keith’s partner Gaby Kassas, had to jump feet first into the family farm this past summer, when their father Bruce found himself stranded at his winter home in Vancouver due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But instead of just maintaining the property – which had not operated as a working farm in more than a decade – the newly-formed team chose to jump straight into reviving it.

With 130 acres and numerous outbuildings on a non-operational farm, the trio began to discuss how they could use the land and the skills they had to help both themselves and others. A neighbor advised them that the Canadian Organic Growers association was looking for local producers to be part of the Growing Eastern Ontario Organically program.

Video: Female Farmer in Ontario

Jenn Doleman speaks to CTV News about being a female farmer in a male dominated industry in Ontario.

As we mourn École Polytechnique’s victims, let’s also reflect on the trailblazing women in engineering

Thirty-one years have passed since 14 women, almost all engineering students, were murdered at Montreal’s École Polytechnique on Dec. 6, 1989. It was a catastrophic human loss. It was also a tragic loss of talent. Back then, every female engineer was a pioneer in a male-dominated environment.

We’ve got a long way to go to reach equal representation in the field, but today as we mourn, we can also take a moment to reflect on some of the women who have taken us this far.

Six women have successfully completed their terms as Canadian deans of engineering, acting as role models and mentors, leading to a remarkable updraft in opportunities for young women. And each has had a direct impact on technology that has changed our world. Each of these six women has played an important role in the leadership of Canadian engineering programs, and each of them has played a part in the fabric of innovation in our country, building the future of our economy.

We know that having diverse perspectives at the design table leads to better engineering. Our engineering leaders also create opportunities for others – including women, Indigenous people, people of colour and international students – all of whom bring a different lens to the innovation table and benefit us all.

Empowering women in underserved communities

In this blog post, the author identifies issues related to women and STEM. According to UNESCO Institute of Statistics (UIS) data, less than 30% of the world’s STEM researchers are women. The World Economic Forum Gender Gap Report predicts that it will take 257 years to eliminate the prevailing gender gap in the workforce, globally.  While women remain underrepresented in STEM on a global scale, there is an added challenge in communities where patriarchy is strongly inscribed in the laws and social norms.

Coronavirus and gender: More chores for women set back gains in equality

The coronavirus pandemic could wipe out 25 years of increasing gender equality, new global data from UN Women suggests. Women are doing significantly more domestic chores and family care, because of the impact of the pandemic. Employment and education opportunities could be lost, and women may suffer from poorer mental and physical health.

Even before the pandemic, it was estimated women were doing about three quarters of the 16 billion hours of unpaid work that are done each day around the world. In other words, before coronavirus, for every hour of unpaid work done by men, three hours was done by women. Now that figure is higher.

Aren’t We Missing Food Security Experts in the Incoming President-Elect Biden-Kamala Harris Administration?

URBANA, Illinois / ABUJA, Dec 17 2020 (IPS) – Food insecurity across the U.S. continues to be on the rise because of the effects of COVID-19. According to Feeding America, over 50 million Americans will experience food insecurity, including 17 million children. We both grew up in countries referred to as “developing countries,” Ifeanyi in Nigeria and Esther in Kenya. At the time, we never imagined that we would witness food insecurity being an issue in developed countries such as the U.S. like we are now. As thought leaders in global health and food security, we are compelled to amplify this inequity in the world’s richest country.  Here’s where to start.

  • First, President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris should include a food security expert in the COVID-19 Advisory Council. The responsibility of the expert should be to provide advice on ways to address the current COVID-19 food insecurity in the U.S.A.
  • Second, develop a multi-stakeholder comprehensive food security plan as part of epidemic preparedness plans for the next pandemic.
  • Third, food banks should improve their process to enable long-term storage of nutritious foods such as green vegetables, fruits, proteins, milk etc. According to Feeding America, these classes of nutritious foods are the most requested at food banks.
  • Fourth, prioritize the needs of under-five children and women of child-bearing age. Worryingly, science and available evidence from a comprehensive review of 120 studies done by the UN FAO suggests a correlation between food insecurity and malnutrition.
  • Lastly, encourage families to form groups and run all seasons sustainable community gardens.
Reports Publications and Resources:

Canada’s Equality Fund’s inaugural Annual Report

Building upon a $300 million CAD commitment from the Government of Canada, most of which will be allocated specifically toward our gender lens investment strategy, the Equality Fund will mobilize unprecedented resources to build a more equal future together.

The Equality Fund is thrilled to launch our inaugural Annual Report: From the Ground Up. Inside, you will find highlights of our work during 2019-2020—a year of imagining, listening, designing, building, and learning. Amid global challenge and change, our team and partners have forged ahead, laying the foundation for our audacious vision: to build the largest self-sustaining fund for gender equality in the world.

In this flagship first year, the Equality Fund:

  • Supported 45 grantee partners from around the world.
  • Refined our investment strategy to bring partners to the table and create the mechanism through which feminist work will be supported for years to come.
  • With the Association for Women’s Rights In Development (AWID), we listened to over 1,000 feminists around the world in an in-depth consultation process to understand the hopes, dreams, and expectations for the Equality Fund.
  • Built a diverse and expert global Board of Directors to guide the Equality Fund through our build.
  • Built upon the roots of The MATCH International Women’s Fund to scale our vision, reach, and impact.

Understanding Women’s and Girls’ Vulnerabilities to the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Gender Analysis and Data Dashboard of Low- and Lower-Middle Income Countries

In which low- and lower-middle income countries are women and girls most exposed to or at most risk to suffer the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic? How well are these countries able to address these effects? These two questions informed this policy paper and the creation of a pandemic-related gender vulnerability data dashboard for 75 low-income countries (LICs) and lower-middle income countries (LMCs).
The dashboard includes country-level indicators of women’s wellbeing, economic performance, COVID-19 rates and trends, and countries’ capacity to respond to the pandemic with a gender lens.

The Farm Show interview with Manitoba Women in Agriculture and Food

Wendy Dyck interviews Laura Lazo, the chair of Manitoba Women in Agriculture and Food (MWAF) in this half hour program on MB News and Sports on November 26 and November 30, 2020.

Are you a woman in agriculture, are you interested in starting your own business or work in food manufacturing? MWAF is a non-profit organization that works with women to help achieve their goals, build businesses and help find career opportunities. Women helping women by inspiring each other and working together.

Laura Lazo will be answering all your questions you may have about the organization in this interview. The second part of the interview will be about Laura and how she became one of the founders of MWAF.  Show brought to you by Wolfe Enterprises.

Audio: Chicken Farmers of Canada

See what women in ag have to say about chicken farming. We will be talking to farmers Amy Vanderheide and Tiffany Martinka about their perspective on being women in agriculture. Amy, who resides in Nova Scotia, and Tiffany, who lives in Saskatchewan, bring us a unique perspective on their struggles, stories and successes as females within a male-dominated industry.

Tags: , , ,