Numerous efforts are in place in Malawi to address the high rates of HIV/AIDS in the country. Furthermore, several successes in HIV/AIDS prevention and mitigation (including free anti-retroviral drugs to people living with AIDS) have been documented. Fewer successes, however, have been achieved in integrating gender issues into HIV/AIDS programs. In this article I begin by defining gender mainstreaming and why it is central to HIV/AIDS programming. The second objective of this paper is to summarize the existing initiatives to mainstream gender in HIV/AIDS programs. The final objective is to uncover the ongoing needs, gaps and challenges for gender mainstreaming in HIV/AIDS programs. One of the biggest hurdles in HIV/AIDS prevention and mitigation remains the attitudes and cultural norms which reinforce women’s disadvantaged position. Efforts to mainstream gender into HIV/AIDS programs are inadequate because they address women’s practical needs rather than their strategic interests. Thus, current gender mainstreaming strategies are limited by the superficiality of the approaches for addressing gender inequality and HIV/AIDS, underscoring the need for transformative planning.
Mainstreaming Gender in HIV/AIDS Programs: Ongoing Challenges and New Opportunities in Malawi.
Journal of International Women's Studies, 7(1), 8-25.
Available at: http://vc.bridgew.edu/jiws/vol7/iss1/2