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In partnership with women

Latin America and Caribbean Region

Gender is to be higher on agenda of the EU-Latin America and the Caribbean relations.

The Action Plan adopted in Madrid in 2010 was expanded in the EU-CELAC Summit (Santiago of Chile, January 2013) by incorporating an additional chapter on gender, in order to strengthen gender equality and foster fair and egalitarian societies. The chapter foresees, among other things, the setting up of a high level dialogue on gender issues.

The objective is to prioritise the gender issue in the context of bi-regional relations and underscore the political will in both regions to guarantee gender equality and the protection, exercise and promotion of women’s rights, including:

  • Political participation of women
  • Elimination of all forms of violence against women and girls, including sexual violence
  • Economic empowerment of women and their participation in the world of work and in all decision-making processes.



The EU supports a project, led by "Catholics for the Right to Decide" (CDD-Córdoba) which aims at both helping the progress towards the recognition of women’s human rights. The scheme also seeks to improve services for Argentinean women facing gender-based violence or questioning themselves about their sexual and reproductive rights.

Based on the identified objectives, effective actions have been undertaken. Along with the European Union, the project has produced informative and specialised material aimed at spreading information to different groups, from illiterate women to women's rights jurists. Training courses on sexual and reproductive rights have also been provided to 70 students selected by the project with the support of the national and provincial Programs for Sexual Health.

Public debates and workshops on the topic have gathered hundreds of participants. In total, some 700 health and justice professionals as well as decision makers in charge of the formulation and the implementation of the law are connected to the project.


  • Womens rights campaign

In Brazil the European Union forged a strategic partnership with UN Women, UNAIDS, UNFPA which resulted in concrete actions in favour of Women and their rights.

According to data of the Federal Government an estimated 630 thousand people in Brazil live with HIV/AIDS in Brazil. Every 5 minutes a woman is being attacked and one assassinated every two hours. In 80% of these cases the aggressor is the husband, companion or boyfriend.

The axis Violence and HIV (website in Portuguese) is the second edition of the campaign of Women and their Rights pdf - 693 KB [693 KB] in Brazil and was launched in October 2012 in the Chamber of Deputies in Brasília. This campaign published films around these themes in English, Portuguese, Spanish, and for the first time in Ikuna - a language spoken by 30 thousand indigenous Brazilian.

The first campaign of 2011 mobilised the Brazilian society and public authorities to end violence against women and to promote gender equality.

  • Project to relieve poverty for women

One of the EU-funded projects pdf - 120 KB [120 KB] aims at the reduction of urban poverty through access to public policies and housing in São Paulo city and at relieving of poverty for women and young people in the São Paulo shanty towns and slums.


The EU has been making use of several of its financial instruments and programmes to support human rights and women’s rights organisations and promote gender equality in Colombia.

Through local cooperation, EU projects such as ‘Peace Laboratories’ work to strengthen the peace building process in Colombia and encourage a stable living environment for all. The Peace Laboratories have succeeded in helping to develop approaches to creating the conditions for development and sustainable peace at local and regional level.

The Peace Laboratories constitute a unique opportunity for empowering women, as a subject of human rights. These initiatives have been executed in areas particularly affected by illegal armed groups, which constitute a serious threat to women's integrity and freedom.

The Peace Laboratories initiative has resulted in empowering women through social and political processes, increased political involvement leading to greater recognition, greater economic autonomy through women having their own income and playing a greater role in decision making regarding family activities, and increased social participation through networks which led to a positive change in terms of social perception about women's participation.


The EU in Honduras has been carrying out several projects oriented to supporting human rights, women’s rights organisations and promoting gender equality.

The DEBORAH programme español (es) supports citizen's participation and advocacy for women's rights

DEBORAH’s overall objective is to contribute to justice and equality and to improve the capacity of civil society to prevent and respond to women's rights violations. Twenty-seven civil society organizations have been working hand in hand with the NGO "Proyecto Aldea Global" in the implementation of activities to benefit women victims of abuse and violation of their rights.

DEBORAH supports around 3,000 people in dependent families affected by the violation of human rights.

Another scheme that the EU aids is the "Strengthening the Women's Movement for Human Rights Advocacy and Policy Implications in Consolidating Democracy and the Rule of Law in Honduras"

The project's general objective is to contribute to the consolidation of democracy in Honduras, with an enhanced gender perspective and respect for human rights, social justice and citizen's participation from the women's movement. As a specific objective, the project aims to contribute to organizational strengthening of three local women's networks of one municipality of the province of Choluteca and three in the province of Francisco Morazán for the promotion, defence and protection of human rights of women in Honduras.

The European Union also actively supports microenterprise developments and commercialisation of products.

This action aims to contribute to economic and social integration of women in situation of marginality in the Atlantic region of Honduras, specifically 110 women who will improve the quality of family life and economic.

Under these objectives, women in marginal regions who are excluded from economic activity will benefit from the strengthening of organizational, commercial and entrepreneurism skills for the creation of productive initiatives and capacity development in business management.


European Union is working closely with Mexican civil society supporting actions to promote gender equality in Mexico. Within the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) the EU is funding at the moment 8 projects of more than one million euros in gender-related issues.

Regarding gender violence, the EU is implementing a very successful project in the central State of Tlaxcala, with very positive results on the prevention, attention, sanction and eradication of violence and human trafficking of women in the state. The EU has also carried out programmes in the fields of education, lobbying, prevention, attention, training, in order to improve and to guarantee the human rights and access to a life free of violence of all women and girls, from low income populations in particular. As a result of our cooperation in the southern state of Veracruz, the feminicide was classified as a crime in the State two years ago.

Furthermore, we are currently financing 4 projects under other thematic lines cooperation, aiming at building civil society organisations and local government capacity to: facilitate the access and knowledge to sexual and reproductive health services in indigenous communities; and to improve the institutional and operational services for socially excluded children. Our thematic cooperation also focuses in the justice reform system and gender equality in different states, as well as and the security and human rights for women and girls.

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