9th Conference European Sociological Association

RN33 Women's and Gender Studies

2009-09-05 13:30:00 2009-09-05 15:00:00 Saturday, 5 September 13:30 - 15:00 The Social Reproduction of Gender Inequalities Building II, C4.02

The Multi-Purpose Community Centers: Empowering Southeastern Anatolian Women, Turkey

Multi-Purpose Community Centres (MPCC) project is one of the community development programs intended to eliminate gender based inequalities by means of improving women's individual, social and economic accomplishments in Southeastern Anatolia region. These community centers started to conduct its first activities in 1995 in Southeastern Anatolia region. The organizations of these community centers became widespread by considering local needs. The main purpose of MPCC integrates the economic, social and environmental dimensions of sustainable development through strategies for poverty alleviation and that focus on participatory approaches and capacity building for disadvantage groups from a gender perspective.

The objectives of MPCCs are as follows:
Creating opportunities for women to become aware of their problems and launch initiatives for their solution, - Ensuring that women take part in public sphere and benefit more from available services, - Enhancing female employment and entrepreneurship, - Contributing to equal opportunities by empowering women, - Starting the process of gender balanced development and developing replicable models relevant to local circumstances for participatory community development
The primary aims of the community development programs of these centers are to increase the number of literate women, maternal and infant health, domestic economy and nutrition, skills development and educational programs, increase women's self-confidence, construct an awareness of being "us" and organize social and cultural activities to develop local initiatives. The community centers are primarily situated in areas of poor and deprived families, small town centers and villages.
At present there are 30 MPCCs active in 9 provinces. The target population of these centres consist of women and young girls.

The purpose of this paper is to provide the evaluation of MPCC from gender perspective. This paper will address the participants profiles and their activities. This study will be also identify characteristics of good practice in the MCC for the promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women.