Context of Our Work

The continues economic disenfranchisement of women, our initial advances in informal sector organizing, initial efforts in breaking the political apathy among young women, the discrimination of LGBT in communities and schools despite their increasing and significant participation in economic production, and the disturbing aftermath of Yolanda (Typhoon Haiyan), other typhoons and threat of disasters, define Kaisa Ka’s tactical focus.

Yolanda and disasters

Yolanda, the worst ever disaster that occurred in the country, left more than 6,000 dead, 1,779 missing persons, and 27,665 injured.  The number of affected families rose to 3,424,593 or 16,078,181 individuals from 12,139 barangays (villages) in 591 municipalities and 57 cities of 44 provinces in 9 regions.  The world witnessed the chaos, helplessness and hopelessness that engulfed the areas mostly located in the Visayas.  After almost two years, the situation remains significantly unchanged.  This is aggravated by the several typhoons that occurred in the past two years.

In times of calamities, women are more than doubly hit.  There are numerous stories of sexual harassment during and after disaster.  The absence of provisions for women in disaster preparedness, disaster response and even in early recovery efforts is very glaring.

Disaster phenomenon is becoming a norm.  The country is host to several typhoons all year long resulting to landslides and flooding.  Women, especially economically disadvantaged women, with very limited resources, means, and options need to increase their capacity to reduce disaster risk.

Economic disenfranchisement and advances in informal women workers organizing

With the increasing feminization and informalization of labor, women find their way in precarious jobs and the underground economy, or, from the government’s perspective, in jobs that are “illegal.” Informal women workers are left on their own, with very minimal or no government protection.  The number of ambulant vendors, waste pickers, and other odd jobbers is increasing.  The ones who are displaced in Baguio City and La Trinidad continue to thrive in small town centers.

The track record of Kaisa Ka in assisting economically displaced women encourage new groups of women in informal sector, both urban and rural, to approach us for assistance – legal registration, reactivating organizations, accessing government support and resources.

Lack of job opportunities in the country forced more and more women to land in jobs that are degrading, demeaning, dirty and dangerous.

 

Initial efforts in breaking the political apathy among young women

Our initial efforts in steering awareness about women’s human rights and tactical campaigns for economic justice in the schools started in the last quarter of 2013.   We do this by offering our modules on women’s rights to receptive teachers and focal persons of Offices of Student Affairs.  We continue this efforts in the schools by inviting and soliciting young women participation in progressive and popular education and cultural forms.

 

Discrimination of LGBT in communities and schools despite increasing and significant participation in economic production,

In the course of our work, we notice the increasing number of lesbians and gays in economic activities, in the schools and in our communities.  In spite of this, they are still subjected to offensive jokes and discrimination.  The absence of progressive venues and forums for the LGBT leads them to decadent activities that all the more result to disrespect and marginalization. Back

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