Fathers urged to help women in house work to overcome poverty, inequality
Groups called for the active participation of fathers in household chores to address poverty, and the heavy and unequal responsibilities women face in care work.
SIAD Initiatives in Mindanao Convergence for Asset Reform and Regional Development (SIM-CARRD) in partnership with Oxfam and the local government of Libungan, North Cotabato made the call during a male cooking contest organized during the town’s 57 th founding anniversary.
The event called “Ang lodi kong tatay sa gawaing bahay” features the culinary skills using organic products of fathers from four communities in Libungan, who are considered as “care champions.”
SIMCARRD Executive Director Angelina Katoh said that care work, which includes house work, has long been a responsibility of women, limiting their time to learn, earn and take part in political or social activities.
“Increased demand for care work prevents women empowerment and traps families in poverty. In poor communities, tasks such as laundry and cooking can take most of the day and even becomes more challenging when there is limited access to water,” Katoh said.
Oxfam’s 2017 Household Care Survey Report in three countries including the Philippines shows that women in poor communities spend an average of 4.5 to 6.5 hours on care work, which is three to six times longer than men.
The same survey also shows that women spend a total of 11 to 12 hours of care responsibility or the supervision of an elderly or child, which is two to four times longer than men.
“Care work should be everyone’s responsibility; but women now disproportionately bear the burdens of household work and unpaid care tasks. It’s time this is recognized and changed. Oxfam and our partners have been working closely with local governments to craft policies that recognize and redistribute unpaid care burdens,” Oxfam Country Director Maria Rosario Felizco said.
SIMCARRD and Oxfam are working together with the communities to recognize the importance of care work, and to change attitudes towards gender roles. They are also improving water sources and providing time-saving equipment to make care work easier for women andtheir families.
Aside from these, they are also aiding communities to engage with government, private sector and civil society organizations to invest in infrastructures and services such as health and education.
Oxfam is a global non-profit organization working closely with various local partners to address the underlying problems of poverty in the country for the past 30 years. One of its
programs is the Women’s Economic Empowerment and Care (WE-Care) Dreams, which aims to recognize the importance of care work.
Photo Caption: (See attached file)
The cooking contest recently held in Libungan town, Cotabato to highlight the importance of men’s active participation in household work. (Photo: April Abello-Bulanadi / Oxfam)