Senegal is launching a Gender and Climate Action Plan for agriculture sector, informed by AICCRA engagement

Through a partnership with AICCRA, Senegal's Ministry of Agriculture is coordinating the development of a Gender and Climate Action Plan for the agriculture sector, which will be crucial to inform national cross-sectoral gender and climate action led by the Ministry of Environment.

In Senegal, the rising temperatures, increased length and intensity of dry spells, sea level rise, coastal erosion, intensification of rainfall extremes threaten food and nutrition security, productivity, health and infrastructure, ultimately jeopardizing economic development.

Climate change impacts affect Senegalese men and women differently. Because of the differential access to resources, knowledge and technologies resulting from traditional social role and structural barriers, women are more vulnerable with limited capacities to responses to climate change impacts. Additionally, they are often excluded from formal or community decision-making bodies and planning processes for climate adaptation.

There is an urgent need to find common ground between climate adaptation and gender equity in agriculture. By strengthening women's capacity to adapt to climate change, notably through resilient farming techniques, training, and access to weather information, they can improve their productivity and food security.

To help tackle this challenge, the Accelerating Impacts of CGIAR Climate Research for Africa (AICCRA) is bundling together packages of innovations, technologies and practices that have been evaluated as ‘gender-smart’.

Through a partnership with AICCRA, Senegal's Ministry of Agriculture is coordinating the development of a Gender and Climate Action Plan for agriculture sector, which will be crucial to inform the national cross-sectoral Gender and Climate Action, that is being led by the Ministry of Environment, the National Designated Authority (NDA).

Ms Mbacké Ndéye Sokhna Mbaye Diop, Coordinator of the Gender Unit at the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Equipment and Food Sovereignty (MAERSA) said of the plan:

“The development of this action plan is timely, as the impact of climate change on men and women is well established. We know that it impacts them differently. Women are more affected than men, hence the importance of the involvement of the Ministry of Agriculture.”

Ms Mbacké Ndéye Sokhna Mbaye Diop, Coordinator (MAERSA) and Dr Alcade Segnon, Science Officer (AICCRA)

AICCRA supported the process of developing the Gender and Climate Action Plan for Senegal's agriculture sector through technical assistance and financial support. A participatory and inclusive approach, involving multiple stakeholder consultations was adopted. A partnership with the Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Equipment and Food Sovereignty (MAERSA) of Senegal, through the Science-Policy Dialogue Platform has provided the necessary institutional anchoring to the process.  

The team conducted a situation analysis of how gendered vulnerability to climate change in agriculture sector of Senegal manifests. The process included:

  • A national stakeholder engagement workshop, a key stage that enabled a diagnostic analysis differential vulnerability and impacts of climate change in the sector, as well as gathering strategic orientations for the gender and climate action plan; 
  • Data collection through in-depth individual expert interviews and focus group discussions with farmers in the regions of Thiès, Dakar, Kaffrine and Louaga. 

The primary data was used to define the objectives, components and priority actions of the Gender and Climate Action Plan. Three categories of stakeholders were consulted including high-level decision-makers and technical experts (at the macro level), researchers, representatives of NGOs and representatives of the private sector (at the meso level), and representatives of farmers' organizations, women processors and youth groups (at the micro level). 

The diagnosis and insights from the discussions and interviews with the stakeholders informed the draft of the Gender and Climate Action Plan. 

Following this, the team organized a validation workshop of the Gender and Climate Action Plan in Saly, Senegal, in May 2023. The workshop was attended by the same stakeholders initially involved in the process. This stakeholder consultation enabled discussions on the institutional framework, monitoring and evaluation mechanisms, as well as strategies for mobilizing finance. 

Participants acknowledged the importance of the plan and asked questions on various aspects such as the diagnostic analysis of climate change, gender mainstreaming, the definition of vulnerability, the scope and operationalization of the action plan, strategic alignment, the responsibilities of stakeholders and the institutional framework for implementation, etc. 

Participant at the validation workshop for the Gender and Climate Action Plan

Following the recommendation of the stakeholder validation workshop, a review committee has been established to ensure that all the inputs, suggestions and recommendations of the validation workshop are adequately incorporated into the final version of the plan. The committee was composed of gender focal points from the ministries of environment, agriculture, livestock, fisheries and gender, who are responsible for promoting gender-based policies and coordinated by the Science-Policy Dialogue Platform.

Group photo of all the participants in the validation workshop for the Gender and Climate Action Plan

What’s next?

As the plan has completed all the review processes, the final step is the official launch. The lessons learnt from this piloting in Senegal will inform the development of Gender Climate Action Plan in other AICCRA countries as well as in spillover countries.

As the process of formulating the National Gender Climate Action Plan is ongoing in Senegal, the National Focal for Gender and Climate at the Ministry of Environment, Dibor Sarr Faye, thanked AICCRA for its support for the development of the sectorial gender action plan and emphasised that the sectorial plan will inform the national cross-sectorial plan. She wished that AICCRA will continue to support the resource mobilization for the implementation of the plan, saying:

"With this sectorial Gender Action Plan, we pave the way for inclusive gender and climate sensitive solutions. I want to express gratitude to AICCRA for their support. With their continued partnership, we're empowered to mobilize resources and drive impactful change on a national scale."


Belmira MoustaphaCommunications Officer, AICCRA West Africa 

Alcade C. SegnonScience Officer, AICCRA West Africa 

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