By: Maat Re


Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right but also a critical driver of sustainable development. The United Nations’ fifth Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) aims to “Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.” This ambitious goal recognizes that gender-based discrimination, violence, and lack of opportunities for women and girls remain significant barriers to progress in virtually every corner of the world.

SETSI, with its core values of diversity, inclusivity, and social innovation, is well-positioned to contribute to the achievement of this SDG. By promoting gender equality within our own initiatives and fostering an ecosystem that celebrates and empowers women and girls, SETSI is paving the way for a more equitable and prosperous society.

Challenging Traditional Gender Norms and Stereotypes

One of the most significant obstacles to gender equality is the persistence of traditional gender norms and stereotypes that confine women and girls to specific roles and limit their opportunities. A commitment must be made to foster intergenerational collaboration and nurturing broad coalitions to provide a platform to challenge deeply rooted biases and promote a more inclusive and progressive narrative.

By bringing together diverse perspectives and experiences, we can create spaces where women and girls can share their stories, voice their concerns, and actively participate in shaping the social economy, social finance, impact investing, and cooperative ecosystems. This not only empowers us as individuals but also contributes to shifting societal perceptions and breaking down barriers that have historically hindered our advancement.


Promoting Women’s Entrepreneurship and Economic Empowerment

Economic empowerment is a crucial aspect of achieving gender equality, as it provides women with financial independence, decision-making power, liberation and the ability to contribute to our communities and societies. The focus on supporting diverse entrepreneurs, social enterprises, and cooperatives creates opportunities for women to engage in entrepreneurial activities and access the resources and support they need to succeed.

Addressing Gender-Based Violence and Creating Safe Spaces

Gender-based violence remains a pervasive issue worldwide, with devastating consequences for women’s physical, mental, and economic well-being. The focus on fostering safe and inclusive communities creates opportunities to address this critical issue.

Through partnerships with local organizations and stakeholders, we can contribute to initiatives that raise awareness about gender-based violence, provide resources and services, and work towards creating safe spaces where women and girls can thrive without fear of violence or harassment.

Also, by promoting social responsibility and sustainable development, communities can continue to address some of the underlying societal and cultural factors that enable gender-based violence, such as gender inequality, harmful traditional practices, and poverty.


Empowering Girls through Education and Skill Development

Investing in the education and skill development of girls is a powerful catalyst for achieving gender equality and breaking the cycle of poverty. A commitment to learning and innovation creates opportunities to support initiatives that ensure equal access to quality education for young women, as well as programs that equip them with the skills and knowledge needed to succeed in the solidarity economies.

By partnering with educational institutions, community service organizations, charities, philanthropic foundations and other stakeholders, we can contribute to the development of curricula and programs that provide girls meaningful opportunities, providing them with role models, mentorship, and hands-on learning experiences. This not only empowers them as individuals but also contributes to building a pipeline of diverse and talented leaders who can drive positive change in their communities.

Fostering Inclusive and Supportive Communities

Achieving gender equality is not solely the responsibility of women and girls; it requires the active participation and support of entire communities. As the old proverb we use often at SETSI states, “It takes a village..”, The emphasis on fostering inclusive and supportive communities creates an environment conducive to the advancement of women and girls.


We must adapt an inclusive and innovative approach to addressing social and economic challenges. By challenging traditional gender norms, promoting women’s entrepreneurship, economic empowerment, amplifying women’s voices in decision-making processes, addressing gender-based violence, and empowering girls we will be well positioned to advance gender equality and create a more just world.

Achieving gender equality is a complex and multifaceted challenge that requires sustained commitments and collaborations from all sectors of society. As we strive to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, it is imperative that we prioritize gender equality as a fundamental driver of progress. By embracing inclusive and innovative approaches, we can not only create opportunities for women and girls but also unleash the full potential of our societies, fostering a more just, equitable, and prosperous world for all.