The Gender and Development Council (GAD) is a worldwide Peace Corps working group that focuses on issues of gender equality and womens empowerment in developing nations. The GAD Council, established in Ukraine in 1997, is a cross-sector program. GAD meetings, which are open to all volunteers and staff, are held three times a year.
GAD Ukraine's mission is two-fold:
GAD accomplishes its mission through a variety of projects. The annual GLOW (Girls Leading Our World) and TOBE (Teaching Our Boys Excellence) leadership camps address issues such as counter-trafficking, HIV/AIDS, LGBT rights, domestic violence, gender equality, and gender stereotypes. Visit the GLOW/TOBE blog for more information.
GAD also holds an annual essay contest, which presents an opportunity to bring issues of gender equality into communities around Ukraine. In 2010 the topic of non-traditional families received an overwhelming response in all three categories (secondary, university, and adult) and provided host country nationals with an opportunity to share their ideas about the many changes and struggles that Ukrainian families face today, such as working abroad.
Other GAD projects include education for volunteers and Ukrainian counterparts and youth about issues such as domestic violence, counter-trafficking, and LGBT issues through resource development and distribution; as well as through ongoing seminars and trainings all throughout Ukraine.
GAD also publishes a quarterly newsletter, the GADFly.
As a member of GAD, volunteers are required to join at least one sub-committee and are strongly encouraged to take on a leadership role and create projects of their own. The sub-committees include:
Works to educate volunteers on human trafficking issues as they relate to Ukraine, in order to provide informed volunteers throughout the country who can educate their communities on this important issue.
Currently working on a safe-spaces campaign to ensure that LGBT rights are seen as human rights. Also provides plans and resources to volunteers seeking to incorporate LGBT awareness into their service. In addition, the LGBT sub-committee collaborates with the LGBT Support Group.
A regular publication by GAD members. Past topics have included: Women in the Workforce, Domestic Violence, LGBT rights, and Counter-Trafficking.
Seeks to create an equal workforce in Ukraine by providing young women professional advice and information.
Provides educational materials and support to volunteers seeking to involve their community in a discussion of domestic violence.
Responsible for planning GAD's annual summer camps GLOW (Girls Leading Our World) and TOBE (Teaching Our Boys to Excel). Members of the GLOW/TOBE sub-committee look for locations, write grants, create lesson plans and activities, recruit students, and serve as camp counselors.
Other projects GAD members are involved in include fundraising, resource development, and improving gender training for Peace Corps Trainees.
Visit the Gender section of the Materials Database to browse and download lesson plans, manuals, articles, and many other useful resources on gender-related issues.
President: McKenzie Taylor
Vice President: Rebecca Norman
Development Director: Julie Daniels
Secretary: Maria Corriher