Frequently Asked Questions

  • 1. In which provinces will “United Nations Joint Program for Promoting the Human Rights of Women” be implemented?

    United Nations Joint Program for Promoting the Human Rights of Women (“Program” or “UNJP”) will be implemented in 11 provinces, namely, Aydin, Canakkale, Edirne, Erzincan, Eskisehir, Gaziantep, Kahramanmaras, Kastamonu, Kayseri, Kocaeli and Ordu.

  • 2. What type of criteria was used in choosing pilot provinces?

    5 criteria were used in choosing 11 pilot provinces of the Program:

    a) The existence of institutional capacity of local administrations in the province

    b) The prior experience gained in the province on gender related projects and programs

    c) The willingness of local administrations to be part of a gender related program

    d) The existence of a consensus on gender among all the public institutions and civil society organizations

    e) The existence of gender related data in the province

  • 3. What is the implementation period of the Joint Program?

    The Joint Program will be implemented between September 2012 and September 2015.

  • 4. What are the components and targets of the Program?

    The Program is designed to achieve gender equality and to raise awareness among the larger public on women’s rights. The Program activities consist of three inter-dependent components:


    Gender Responsive Budgeting: To contribute to the realization of local service delivery in line with gender responsive budgeting within the framework of a participatory model that includes local governments, urban councils and women’s NGOs.


    Sabanci Foundation Grant Program: To support capacity development of NGOs, in partnership with universities and local government agencies toward the implementation of gender projects at the local level.


    Purple Certificate Program:To train high school teachers and increase their ability to apply educational tools which emphasize gender equality. NGOs and local government representatives will also benefit from this training.

  • 5. Which institutions does Sabanci Foundation partner with in implementing the Program?

    The Program will be implemented by United Nations Development Program (“UNDP”), UN Women and Sabanci University, in partnership with Ministry of Interior, Ministry of National Education, Ministry of Family and Social Policy, Union of Municipalities of Turkey and with the financial support of Sabanci Foundation.

  • 6. Why does Sabanci Foundation work with United Nations institutions in Turkey in promoting women’s rights?

    Sabanci Foundation believes that multi-stakeholder and multi-partner Programs will have a higher impact on social change. Starting from the premise that individual efforts will not take any institution working on women’s rights very far, Sabanci Foundation actively seeks an effective partnership with reliable institutions. United Nations, as the supra-national body that is promoting gender equality as a global development goal and a human development indicator, that is promoting member states to fulfill their promises in this area, emerges as the most legitimate partner in this regard.


    United Nations aims to secure the commitment of member states to gender goals through various international treaties and studies. In 2011, UNDP disseminated the results of Gender Inequality Index that shows the performance of countries in meeting gender-related goals. In addition to this, some targets of Millennium Development Goals are also designed to specifically address the problems related to the access of women to education and health services.


    UN Women plays a pivotal role in institutionalizing gender norms and standards on a global scale. UN Women also provides technical expertise to member states and creates effective partnerships with CSOs in fulfilling these norms and standards.


    In order to rely on this important expertise and to make good use of the valuable experience gained internationally by these institutions, Sabanci Foundation partners with UNDP and UN Women to make the biggest impact in Turkey.

  • 7. What are the roles of the Ministries in the Program?

    Three of the strategies specified in the National Action Plan on Gender Equality (2008-2013) prepared by General Directorate on the Status of Women of the Ministry of Family and Social Policy are as follows:

    • Carrying out a feasibility study on an entity on Gender Equality
    • Carrying out partnerships at national and international scale to institutionalize gender equality
    • Carrying out preparatory work on gender responsive budgeting in Turkey

    In line with these strategies, the following roles will be expected from Ministries:

    • Ministry of Family and Social Policies will provide technical expertise and will scale up the results achieved at the local level to national policies and programs.
    • In order to create the administrative receptiveness and cooperation of local administrations, the Program team will cooperate actively with Directorate of Local Administrations at the Ministry of Interior and Union of Municipalities of Turkey.
    • In order for Purple Certificate Program to reach high school teachers in the most effective way possible, the Program team will actively seek the cooperation of Ministry of National Education.
  • 8. How much funds have been allocated by Sabanci Foundation to the Program?

    1.7 million USD will be allocated for the Program from 2012 to 2015.

  • 9. Can you elaborate on the role of Sabanci Foundation in implementing the Program?

    The first UNJP (United Nations Joint Program to Promote and Protect Human Rights of Women and Girls) was carried out between 2006 and 2010 in partnership with and with the financial support of Sabanci Foundation.


    Sabanci Foundation is currently sponsoring the second UNJP. In addition to financially supporting the Program, Sabanci Foundation will also contribute to strategy development and general coordination of the Sabanci Foundation Grant Program.

  • 10. Can we get more information on the Joint Program carried out between 2006 and 2010?

    The “Joint Program to Promote and Protect Human Rights of Women and Girls” (UNJP in short) which involved all of the United Nations agencies in Turkey, the consulates of 10 countries, Ministry of Interior, Sabanci Foundation and Sabanci University was implemented in order to improve the quality and gender focus of local services, to protect women’s rights and increase awareness on the topic in 6 pilot provinces(ızmir, Kars, Nevsehir, Sanliurfa, Trabzon, Van) between 2006 and 2010.


    In addition to supporting the implementation of UNJP, Sabanci Foundation also provided grants to 34 local projects as part of the Grant Program of the Joint Program.


    Local Equality Action Plans to promote better services and access to women and girls were developed through a joint platform of local government and NGO representatives. These plans were later adopted by local councils at the Municipal and Governorship levels. The program has also played a very important role in the establishment of “Gender Equality Commissions” which are the institutional structures established for monitoring the implementation of Local Equality Action Plans and the delivery of local policies and services from a gender perspective.


    These plans included themes that concern women and girls closely. Some of the themes that make part of Local Equality Action Plans were “Participation of Women to Local Decision Making”, “Urban Services Focusing on the Needs of Women and Girls”, “Economic Empowerment and Working Life”, “Education and Health Services”, “Migration and Poverty”, “Mentality Change and Awareness Raising”.


    On the other hand, Sabanci Foundation Grant Program supported projects that contribute to the implementation of Local Equality Action Plans. We can give the case of hotel management trainings in Izmir, trainings on cookery in Trabzon that promote women’s participation to the labor force and neighborhood leadership trainings for positions in Urban Councils and Women’s Assemblies in Sanliurfa that promote women’s active political participation as examples for such projects.


    2,144 teachers have attended seminars and 206 teachers have received Purple Certificates (certified by the Ministry of Education and considered in service training) after successful completion of a week-long training program at Sabanci University.


    "United Nations Joint Program to Promote and Protect Human Rights of Women and Girls” was a unique project in the sense that it was simultaneously supported by all United Nations organizations in Turkey.


    Ministry of Interior issued a circular to instruct 81 provinces across Turkey to adopt the model developed by UNJP (Local Equality Action Plans development and creation of equality Commissions and Divisions) to promote the rights of women and girls at the local level.


    The Program has been selected by the United Nations Population Fund (“UNFPA”) as one of the “Model Projects”.

  • 11. How many beneficiaries benefited from the Program?

    Sabanci Foundation Grant Program supported 34 projects in program cities reaching over 300,000 people, addressing the critical priority areas of Local Equality Action Plans.


    2,144 teachers have attended seminars and 206 teachers have received Purple Certificates (certified by the Ministry of Education and considered in service training) after successful completion of a week-long training program at Sabanci University.

  • 12. What kind of a social impact have you achieved by implementing UNJP? Did you have the opportunity to measure the social impact of your Program?

    We can summarize the social impact of the Program as follows:

    • CSOs and local officials started partnerships.
    • An understanding that relies on collective thinking and a rights based approach to problems has emerged.
    • It has been understood by CSOs and local governments that all the problems of urban life and solutions to those problems concern women.
    • All the decisions taken by Equality Commissions and Units started integrating women’s perspective and promoted their active participation to social life.
    • CSOs were empowered at the local level. New women’s CSOs were established. CSOs learned to work in a planned manner and realized that their concerted actions have a persuasion power on local governments.

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