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The Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) - MIMAROPA, through the Regional GAD Focal Point System, conducted a Gender Sensitivity Orientation for its officials and employees held on May 26, 2016 at the Luca Cucina Italiana in Talipanan, Puerto Galera, Oriental Mindoro. This is aimed at promoting better understanding among the Office’s present manpower on gender equality and to more appropriately channel GAD fund along with the Philippine Plan for Gender-Responsive Development.

Acting as resource speaker, Ms. Lorenza A. Umali, a GAD Specialist talked on the implementation of Magna Carta of Women as the enabling law to implement GAD programs, projects and activities in the country. She emphasized on the role of the GAD Focal Point System that directs organization’s pursuant of all undertakings that are geared towards the recognition, fulfillment and promotion of women’s rights especially in the marginalized sector.

To gauge the understanding of participants, an activity was performed to determine the distinction between sex and gender, the former which is relatively permanent and universal, and the latter which refers to socially constructed attributes, roles and responsibilities of women and men in a given culture or society.

Subsequent discussion centered on women’s status in the Philippine society through time presented in different era - the pre-colonial time, Spanish colonial time, American colonial period, and during the Japanese where women played different roles but were mostly regarded as the weaker and inferior sex.

Also discussed were the five spheres of gender discrimination or gender-bias such as marginalization, subordination, multiple roles, gender stereotyping, and violence against women. The objective of the discussion was made the participants aware of women’s rights in terms of self-development, opportunities in employment, equality in benefits and representation in the public service, among others.

The activity was concluded with an audio-visual presentation of “The Impossible Dream”, a film that served as an eye-opener not only for women, but also for men.