Five years of GAGGA: “Once you understand what gender justice is about, your perspective will change for good”
Almost five years ago, the Global Alliance for Green and Gender Action (GAGGA) started its journey to bring together the often still quite separate worlds of environmental justice organisations and the women's rights movement. At Both ENDS, Annelieke Douma and Tamara Mohr have been coordinating the GAGGA programme. Together they look back at five years of learning, connecting and enjoying the fruits of this innovative programme.
Why did you want to be part of GAGGA?
Annelieke: For many years I have been actively involved in Both ENDS' ambition to strengthen the focus on gender justice and women's rights in our work. In 2015, the GAGGA programme was the perfect next step for us to take with two women's funds – FCAM and Mama Cash - which also saw the clear relation between women's rights and environmental justice and the many opportunities to work together and learn from each other.
Tamara: GAGGA was also a great opportunity to put strengthening local organisations right back at the centre of our work. That has always been one of my greatest interests and is also why Both ENDS was originally set up.
What for you is the added value of GAGGA to Both ENDS's work?
Tamara: Building networks is very much a part of Both ENDS work. In this case, that is women's organisations, funds and NGOs. I believe very strongly that strengthening local initiatives contributes to the changes we need. In GAGGA, we can strengthen groups that receive attention and support from very few funds and organisations, but which have a lot of knowledge, capacity and power.
Annelieke: GAGGA allowed Both ENDS and our partners to take a 'deep dive' into exploring and specifically working on the link between environmental justice and women's rights. We got to know the women's rights movement – their values, their beliefs and ways of working – and have started to work with many new organisations. GAGGA supports various national and regional funds which in their turn support over 300 grassroots groups in almost 30 countries. Their local fights and initiatives are central to GAGGA's work.
What have you learned over the years in GAGGA?
Tamara: I have learned that the environmental movement and the women's rights movement are very different. In the environmental movement, we talk about work, what we have to do and how. In the women's rights movement, personal attention is also important. How people are doing and what they are experiencing. You can't just talk about the substance of the work, it's also about people's well-being, and how we take care of each other. There is more attention for culture and rituals.
Annelieke: Indeed. We have learned the importance of being open, of taking time to understand each other, of stepping out of our comfort zone and of creating space for partners to learn from each other and start to work together.
Tamara: Because, without first creating that space and building up mutual trust, you can't work together. It is not simply a matter of introducing an environmental organisation and a women's organisation to each other and letting them learn from each other. These are long-term processes that move forward with small steps. But once you see how important those steps are and really understand what gender justice is about, your perspective will change for good. It has changed me as a person.
Annelieke: We now also take up these lessons learned in GAGGA, and the inclusive way of working, in other programmes and in our conversations with donors and policy makers.
What are you most proud of?
Annelieke: I am very proud of the many GAGGA partners who do incredible and urgent work on climate change, claiming land rights, fighting extractives, or working on ecosystem restoration. And of the concrete results achieved by GAGGA, by creating the space and opportunity for women's rights and environmental justice groups to work together. Examples are WAMA, a network which emerged after a GAGGA meeting, women in Nepal who claimed local climate adaptation budgets, or women's groups in Nigeria who have strengthened their campaign for a thorough clean-up of the Niger Delta.
Tamara: Yes, we have really been able to bring people into contact with each other. People are now using that as a springboard to take the next steps, and are doing so with enormous energy. Fantastic processes are emerging within the GAGGA network, many more than we can see – often we don't hear about them until afterwards. We set something in motion that then grows further without us.
Annelieke: It is wonderful to see how partners have come to really feel part of this Alliance and can't wait to continue.
And luckily, GAGGA will indeed continue. How are you looking forward to GAGGA Women Leading Climate Action?
Annelieke: In the next five years of GAGGA we will focus specifically on climate justice. That will allow us to take ambitious steps towards addressing three key – interrelated – global challenges: growing inequality, environmental degradation and climate change. Not an easy task, but we have built a very solid basis in GAGGA to build on.
Tamara: Together with out partners, we will have to identify where we now really need to bring about change, and how. We have to focus on system change to stop climate change! That is a responsibility for all of us, and we are going to devote a lot of energy to working on it in the coming years.
Read more about this subject
GAGGA rallies the collective power of the women's rights and environmental justice movements to realize a world where women can and do access their rights to water, food security, and a clean, healthy and safe environment.
Event / 25 March 2022, 16:00 - 17:30
What does feminist climate action look like and what does it lead to? Join us to hear from grassroots activists who will share their lived experiences and recommendations for equitable, just, and sustainable strategies to tackle the most pressing issue of our time. Global Greengrants Fund and the Global Alliance for Green and Gender Action (GAGGA) will formally launch our joint campaign commitment to support these frontline climate solutions alongside the UN Women Generation Equality Forum’s Feminist Action for Climate Justice Action Coalition. Register today to learn how to mobilize more and better support for feminist climate action.
Publication / 26 November 2020
Blog / 8 March 2019By Tamara Mohr
Together with five women from the Platform Suace Pyvyvõhára, I travel to Mingã Pora in the east of Paraguay. Around 45 families from the indigenous Tekohá Suace community settled here in 2016. In Guaraní, Tekohá means 'the place where we are what we are'. They reside in tents - self-made out of waste materials - on a small strip of land with a soy field on one side and a nature reserve owned by the Itaipu company on the other.
Event / 15 March 2022, 11:00 - 12:30
Join us at the 66st UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66) for a critical conversation about the intersections of climate, gender and sustainable development. Land defenders and gender rights advocates will join ministry representatives from Sweden, Chile and the Netherlands in a discussion about feminist leadership in protecting land, promoting climate solutions and supporting truly sustainable development strategies. In this session, we aim to explore how governments and feminist climate movements can best work together to tackle the root causes of the climate crisis.
External link / 14 December 2021
Launched in 2016, GAGGA is a consortium led by Fondo Centroamericano de Mujeres in collaboration with Mama Cash and Both ENDS. GAGGA rallies the collective power of gender, climate and environmental justice movements around the world. Watch the video to learn more about what GAGGA does and who's involved.
Blog / 7 December 2017By Tamara Mohr
At the end of November EFLAC, the most important gathering of feminists from throughout Latin America and the Caribbean, took place in a park just outside Montevideo, Uruguay. Within Both ENDS, I coordinate the GAGGA programme, in which we promote cooperation between the environmental and women's movements. Our partners Mama Cash and FCAM persuaded me that this meeting was the perfect opportunity to find out whether and, if so, in which way women are interested in the environment. They had prepared me for a very intensive meeting, at which the whole spectrum of emotions would be aroused and expressed. I had no idea what to expect and set off with a completely open mind. And so it came that I spent four days among more than 2,000 women from across the continent.
Publication / 2 November 2021
External link / 19 June 2020
In 2019, Karambot Women's Agriculture Group (Nepal) convinced their municipality to fund its proposed irrigation plan, after they followed a planning and budgeting training.
Event / 14 April 2018, 11:30
On the 14th of April, Both ENDS wil host a workshop called 'Small Grants, Big Impacts' on the annual Africa day in Amsterdam. The workshop aims to demonstrate that so called 'small grants funds' effectively deliver (devopment and climate) money where it matters, to people that need it the most. Large development banks, funds, donors and governments could use small grants funds as alternative financing mechanisms to make sure their money benefits people and their environment now and it the far future.
News / 8 March 2017
Today is International Women's Day. A day originating from women's strikes against poor working conditions in the textile industry, some 100 years ago. Since then, a lot has improved for women but, unfortunately, men and women obviously still don’t have equal rights. In 1949, Simone de Beauvoir already warned that ‘women’s rights will never be vested. You have to stay vigilant your whole life’. Recent developments such as the tightening of abortion laws in some countries confirm this view and show that even in the ‘free West’ women’s rights are still far from self-evident.
Event / 11 May 2016, 13:30 - 15:15
Both ENDS, MamaCash and FCAM are proud to contribute to the 'Adaptation Futures 2016- conference'.
Adaptation Futures is the biennial conference of the Global Programme of Research on Climate Change Vulnerability, Impacts and Adaptation (PROVIA). In 2016 the European Commission and the Government of the Netherlands co-host the fourth edition. Adaptation Futures 2016 is where scholars, practitioners, policymakers and business people from all around the world go to connect, learn and inspire. It highlights adaptation practices and solutions for people, governments and businesses. The programme addresses all sectors and all parts of the world.
News / 15 April 2022
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has taken a unique decision to withdraw from the construction of two controversial dams in Ixquisis, Guatemala. Both ENDS has supported our partner AIDA for many years in its fight against the dams. Tamara Mohr and Pieter Jansen explain why this decision is so exceptional.
News / 31 March 2022
We are exited about the news that Ms MacKenzie Scott decided to entrust substantial funding to a wide range of small grants funds from Both ENDS' partner networks*. These small grants funds are unique as they are set up and led by people, often activists themselves, from the country or region in which the fund is based. Most mainstream conventional funders admit they have difficulties reaching community based organisations and grassroots groups themselves. Small grants funds know better than anyone how to reach local communities, who to support and what kind of financial as well as non-financial support is most needed. Thus, they bridge a wide funding gap. Both ENDS applauds this recognition of the important role of these funds in the funding landscape. We hope this encourages more funders to join!
News / 5 November 2019
After a complaint filed by women's groups from Ixquisis, Guatemala, the Interamerican Development Bank (IDB) has started an investigation on several policy violations, amongst which the Gender Equality policy. This is a unique chance to create a precedent, because complaints on the IDB's gender policy are very rare. The women from Ixquisis are fighting for their rights with support of the Global Alliance for Green and Gender Action (GAGGA).
Video / 12 September 2018
Latin American partner organizations of GAGGA launched the campaign "We, women, are water" in March 2018. This video was launched as part of this campaign, and emphasizes the role of women water defenders.
Video / 12 September 2018
The Latin American partner organizations of GAGGA launched the campaign "We, women, are water" in March 2018. This video was launched as part of this campaign, and emphasizes the importance of recognizing water as a common good.
Video / 12 September 2018
Latin American partner organizations of GAGGA launched the campaign "We, women, are water" in March 2018. This video was launched as part of this campaign, and emphasizes the role of women in the sustainable management of water in Latin America.
Event / 4 November 2021, 13:15 - 14:30
With gender-responsiveness a work in progress, current climate funds are hardly accessible for women-led community based organizations. While these groups lack access to finance and decision-making, they already lead bold holistic gender-just climate solutions and initiatives worth funding support.
Follow this event live on YouTube!
News / 8 March 2021
On International Women's Day (March 8th) the Global Alliance for Green and Gender Action (GAGGA) will launch the "We, Women are Water" campaign to highlight women's role, demands and actions in ensuring water security in the face of climate change.