Gender Equity Mainstreaming through Collaborative Works in Musi Banyuasin

Agreement Signing on Women Empowerment and Economic Welfare

In 2010, the Statistics Agency of Indonesia (Badan Pusat Statistik or BPS) recorded that the number of women working in the palm oil sector reached around 13.79 million people. This figure represents 36 percent of the total workforce involved in the agricultural sector in Indonesia. The empowerment of women in palm oil communities is carried out through the signing of a collaboration agreement between Yayasan CARE Peduli (YCP) and seven Regional Apparatus Offices (OPD) in Musi Banyuasin District. “This collaboration aims to strengthen the local economy for women’s groups. It is a follow up of the MoU signing between YCP and the Musi Banyuasin District Government in November 2022 through the Women’s Empowerment Program in the Palm Oil Community,” said Agus Triwahyuono, Program Manager of YCP during the signing ceremony as part of the Musi Banyuasin CSR Forum (4/1).

The seven OPD involved in this collaboration include the Regional Development Planning Agency, Health Office, Trade and Industry Office, Cooperative and Small and Medium Enterprises Office, Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection Office, Village Community Empowerment Office, and Food Resilience Office. Each office will provide support according to its authority, such as training and ongoing mentoring.

Apriyadi Mahmud, the Head of Musi Banyuasin District, expressed his appreciation for the collaboration, best practices, and innovations implemented by YCP in the Women’s Empowerment Program. He mentioned that the program not only provides active mentoring and support but also prioritizes the use of local resources in the activities’ implementation. “The empowerment program carried out by the Regency Government should emulate what YCP is doing because it focuses on mentoring and sustainability by prioritizing local resources,” he said.

The development of women’s leadership roles within groups and the improvement of access to nutrition for families are also targets to be achieved in the collaboration, especially in the 13 villages, namely Tegal Mulyo Village, Sri Mulyo Village, Bumi Kencana Village, Karya Maju Village, Sido Mulyo Village, Banjar Jaya Village, Dawas Village, Cipta Praja Village, Sumber Agung Village, Panca Tunggal Village, Sri Gunung Village, Suka Damai Village, and Sungai Lilin Subdistrict. Through the establishment of Women’s Economic Enterprise Groups (Kelompok Usaha Ekonomi Perempuan or KUEP), members, assisted by YCP and OPD, receive various capacity development initiatives, empowering the voices of women, and strengthening women’s leadership within both households and in the community.

“KUEP serves as a platform for women in MUBA to achieve self-reliance and economic empowerment. Members of KUEP are not only agents of change but also inspirators whom we support at the local level. Therefore, the support from the seven OPDs is crucial for sustaining this program. For instance, the Women’s Empowerment and Child Protection Office will support the development of Family Welfare Complaint Post in the villages,” explained Rasyid Rasiki, Project Manager of YCP.

Rasyid further conveyed that the monitoring and evaluation process would be conducted regularly. Coordination meetings are planned every four months, providing a platform for dialogue and synergy among all involved parties. “With the signing of this collaboration agreement, it is hoped that the partnership between YCP and the OPDs of Musi Banyuasin District will strengthen further and bring positive impacts to women’s empowerment,” Rasyid concluded.

Writer: Nurainy Darono, Editor: Swiny Adestika