The W+ Standard

The W+ Standard is a unique certification label developed by WOCAN that endorses projects that create increased social and economic benefits for women participating in economic development or environment projects, including those that provide renewable energy technologies, time and labor saving devices, forest and agriculture activities, and employment opportunities.

The W+ is thus an innovative framework to quantify and monetize the social capital created by women, to recognize and reward their contributions to sustainable environments and communities.
 
The W+ measures women’s empowerment in six domains: Time, Income & Assets, Health, Leadership, Education & Knowledge and Food Security. It produces quantified women-benefit units that contribute towards post 2015 Sustainability Goals (SDGs), Climate Financing or Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) targets.

Vist W+ Standard website for more detail: www,wplus.org

Why a W+ Standard?

In much of the world, women comprise the majority of farmers and natural resource managers, yet are often excluded from decision-making and do not have an equal access to resources. Strengthening women’s empowerment will provide environmental, social and economic benefits for climate change adaptation and mitigation, resilience and food security.

Governments, development agencies and investors are increasingly funding women’s empowerment/ gender equality, based on women’s rights and evidence of improved project outcomes. However, what is lacking for many is a robust means of measuring these outcomes in a way that can be simply communicated.

How will the W+ Standard be Implemented?

Existing or new projects should assess how the W+ can be integrated into their project.  Any type of economic development or environment project is potentially applicable: forest, renewable energy, clean water, agriculture, etc.  Projects must plan for and measure progress in at least one of the six domains: Income and Assets, Time, Education and Knowledge, Leadership, Food Security and Health.  Once projects are defined and underway their outcomes will be monitored and measured and verified by an external auditor that has been approved by WOCAN. Organizations/projects that have obtained satisfactory results will be issued W+ certificates for a specific number of units which can then be sold to corporations, investors and individual buyers. The W+ will also provide a new revenue stream to women and their groups through benefit sharing mechanisms required by the Standard.

For more information go to W+ Website: www.wplus.org

Technical Assistance 

WOCAN provides technical assistance in building capacities for gender and women’s empowerment programming and monitoring and evaluation, and can guide Project Developers in each step of the W+ standard application. Project Developers will gain knowledge and expertise on how to measure women’s empowerment using the W+ Standard as a result of receiving this assistance.

 

 

More Detail: 

 
April 24, 2017
A team of WOCAN, REDD Implementation Center and HIMAWANTI staff conducted Focus Group Discussions in 6 Terai Districts (Nawalparasi, Bara, Bardiya, Kailali, Dang and Kapilvastu) and 1 Hill District (Dolakha) in Nepal. The FGD is part of the gender assessment of the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility’s Emission Reduction (ER) programs. This analysis will include examining the...
April 25, 2017
The Board of the Green Climate Fund (GCF) requested the Secretariat to prepare for consideration by the Board, at its eighteenth meeting, a review and update of the Fund-wide Gender Policy and Action Plan1 adopted in decision B.09/11.2 The purpose of this call for inputs is to invite submissions from Board members, Alternate Board members, national designated authorities, focal points,...
April 21, 2017
Nisha Onta, Regional Coordinator for Asia, presented the W+ Standard during the WEE- SERVE Asia conference on 22 April in Manila, Philippines. The conference was organized by Institute for Social Entrepreneurship in Asia (ISEA), in partnership with OXFAM and with the support of the Swedish Government/SIDA. This conference is a culmination activity of a two-year action research conducted in 4...
In programs: The W+ Standard
March 31, 2017
Jeannette explained how the W+ Standard can be applied torecognizeand reward contributions made by women to create sustainable environments during the webinar organized by AVPN on 31 March. The objective of the webinar was to discuss the realities, barriers and opportunities for establishing women-based livelihoods in Asia and how can women’s contributions to climate change...
In programs: The W+ Standard
March 21, 2017
WOCAN assisted in organizing the Embassy of Sweden’s annual workshop for regional development partner organizations: CO-CREATION FOR TRANSFORMATION– Effective Delivery on SDGs through Enhanced Cross-Sectorial Interaction on March 21-22 in Bangkok. The interactive workshop has already resulted in many new relations between the participants that hopefully will benefit from each...
March 23, 2017
A two-day workshop on Gender and Organizational Development was conducted by the training team from WOCAN, which was organized by the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) / the Embassy of Sweden on 22 and 23 March, 2017 in Bangkok. Twenty participants (7 women, 13 men) from 14 partner organizations attended the workshop. The objectives of the workshop were two-fold: Conduct a...
March 17, 2017
Jeannette participated in the Responsible Business Forum on Food and Agriculture in Jakarta from March 14-15. Where she was a speaker on the panel: Scaling up gender empowerment initiatives in food and agriculture, which was moderated by Jenny Costelloe, Country Director, Partnerships, of Grow Asia and the other panelist were Imran Nasrullah, Chief Executive in Indonesia for Louis Dreyfus Company...
March 27, 2017
Early results of WOCAN’s Gender Assessment and Roadmap work in Nepal for the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) were shared at the recent meeting of the FCPF Participants Committee at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. from March 27-29. WOCAN Core Associate, Cecile Ndjebet, Executive Director of REFACOF, Cameroon, represents women within this Committee, which is the main decision-...
In programs:
February 20, 2017
The W+ StandardVersion 1.3 is now open for public comment. After an initial period of utilization, the W+ Standard has been updated. The draft newversion of the W+ Standard is below: W+ Standard V 1.3 for Public Comment (PDF) (Word Doc) Underlined portions of the text are proposed additions. Strikethrough...
In programs: The W+ Standard
January 28, 2017
WOCAN and REDD+ IC (Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation, Implementation Centre) organized the inception meeting on 23 January in Kathmandu, Nepal. There were a total of 31 participants (21 women and 10 men) representing Forestry and REDD related Government Ministries and Departments, NGOs, INGOs and Civil Society. The objective of the meeting was to share the background of...

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Jun
14
Dibya Gurung, WOCAN Core Associate will be attending theOslo REDD Exchange 2016 from 14-15 June being held in Oslo. This year Oslo REDD Exchange will bring together close to 500 REDD+ policy makers and practitioners. The conference is an exchange of perspectives, experiences and forward-looking ideas. The conference will present results from REDD+, with the aim of promoting...
In programs:
Apr
25
Abidah Setyowati, WOCAN Core Associate, will be discussing “Empowering Women in Agriculture” during the Responsible Business Forum on Food and Agriculture 2016 on 26 April in Jakarta, Indonesia. The will explore innovative and collaborative approaches to improving agricultural productivity and environmental sustainability across key commodity value chains. Global leaders will gather...
Feb
24
Jeannette Gurung will be discussing the importance of empowering women in agriculture and exploring partnerships for sustainable development. This panel discussion is organized for Syngenta’s regional Corporate and Public Affairs team. The aim of this session is to develop a stronger understanding of how Syngenta can empower women and to explore opportunities of partnerships. Other...
In programs:
May
23
WOCAN is a members of the Asian Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN). The goal of the Asian Venture Philanthropy Network (AVPN) Conference 2016 is to discuss “How has Social Investing Impacted Asia?” by taking stock of the social investing market in the past years from when it was just a concept in Asia. Sessions will address questions such as has there been real progress? Has the...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Feb
4
Forest and Landscapes Climate Finance team (GCCFL) in collaboration with the Gender CCSA, on gender and climate change is organizing a seminar on “Gender Inclusion in the World Bank’s Work on Forests and Landscapes: Applying the W+ Standard” on 4 Feb, 12:00-1:30pm at the World Bank in Washington DC. Overview: In the context of the World Bank Group’s 2016 Gender...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Nov
30
Jeannette Gurung will attend the workshop onGovernance Structure of the GREAT Women in ASEAN Initiative (GWIAI) organized by US- ASEAN Connectivity through Trade and Investment (ACTI) from 30 Nov- 1 Dec in Bangkok, Thailand.This workshop is part of the sequential activities to foster gender business mainstreaming within the ASEAN Women Entrepreneurs Network (AWEN), and SME development...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Dec
2
Jeannette will be attending theConsultative Group to Assist thePoor (CGAP) and the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) workshop on,“Facilitating Inclusive Financial Markets” being heldon 2 Decemberat in Bangkok, Thailand. Recently CGAP has published new funder guidelines, which encourage funders totake a market systems approach to...
In programs: The W+ Standard
Dec
7
Gender and Climate Finance COP21 side event Monday, December 7th, 10:00-11:30, IUCN Pavilion- Blue Zone Gender equality and women’s empowerment are pathways to achieving greater progress in better development outcomes, including reducing greenhouse gases and building resilience for climate change impacts. Climate finance is a critical element of the climate...
Dec
8
From Global Commitments to Local Action:National Approaches to Mitigating Climate Changeand Advancing Gender Equality A high-level UNFCCC COP21 side event On the occasion of Gender Day Tuesday, December 8th 16:45-18:15 Blue Zone; Room OR 01 Paris, France Hosted by the Environmental Protection Agency of the Government of Liberiain collaboration with the...
Jan
27
WOCAN Board meeting will be held from 27-29 January 2016 in San Francisco, California, USA.
In programs:

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The objective of this report is to identify areas that the African Development Bank (AfDB) and its partners could target to empower women economically in agriculture. Addressing the barriers that reduce the participation of women along the agricultural value chain, from production through to processing and trade will be pivotal in transforming their role in the sector and in empowering them...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This report aims to help companies close productivity and efficiency gaps in agribusiness value chains, particularly those in smallholder production. At each stage—(1) input provision and use; (2) production; (3) post-harvest processing and storage; and (4) transportation, marketing, and sales—it outlines key challenges that women face, highlights business benefits, and offers...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This paper applies the Total Portfolio Activation framework to help mission investors maximize their social and environmental impact across their entire portfolios and to generate positive benefits for women and girls. It presents concrete examples of leading opportunities, as well as a variety of case studies of investors, funds, and initiatives that integrate gender considerations into their...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This paper provides a framework for impact investors as they consider how to invest in issues related to food and agriculture across asset classes, including public equities, fixed income, venture capital, and real assets. By identifying these opportunities for investment, investors can maximize the potential for positive impact and portfolio returns. Author:Kristin Lang, Joshua...
In programs: The W+ Standard
This document, Towards Gender-Equitable Small-Scale Fisheries – A handbook In support of theimplementation of the voluntary Guidelines for Securing Sustainable Small-Scale Fisheries in theContext of Food Security and Poverty Eradication (henceforth the “handbook”), was developed tosupport gender-equitable small-scale fisheries by enhancing the understanding of...
In programs: Membership Engagement
This report highlights that with a “gender lens” approach to energy access programs, the millions of dollars flowing to energy access initiatives around theglobe can have a greater impact on women’s empowerment.The purpose ofthis report is to reach a common understanding of this linkage and to establish a framework that takes this intoaccount. With such a...
Manipadma Jena highlights in this article thatwomen's secure tenure rights lead to several positive development outcomes for them and their families, including resilience to climate change shocks, economic productivity, foodsecurity, health, and education. She highlights thatclimate change is ushering in new population dynamics. As men’s outmigrationcfrom indigenous...
In programs: Membership Engagement
This Briefing Paper explores the key human rights and environmental and social principles set forth in the preamble of the Paris Agreement, including the linkages to existing international obligations, and how these principles can be integrated into four key elements of the Paris Rule Book: Nationally Determined Contributions, Adaptation Communications, the Transparency Framework, and the Global...
In programs: Membership Engagement
This is the second report of the UNHigh-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment and stresses that building women’s economic empowerment must be done in ways that leaves nobody behind, particularly the most marginalized women at the bottom of the pyramid. The Panel lays out concrete actions for accelerating progress towards women’s full and equal economic participation. Some...
Oxfam asserts that effective economic empowerment for women occurs when womenenjoy their rights to control and benefit from resources, assets, income and their owntime, and when they have the ability to manage risk and improve their economic status andwellbeing. However, for Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE) to translate into meaningfulempowerment, women must also...

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