Proposal for a Federal Directive to Support the Empowering Nepali Women Initiative to Help Eliminate Chhaupadi in Nepal by 2030 by Training Men and Boys about Gender Equality and Social Norms
MetadataShow full item record
Chhaupadi is a religious practice based on centuries-old interpretations of Hinduism that regard menstrual blood to be impure, predominantly in the rural Western Provinces. Under Chhaupadi, women having their periods or who recently gave birth are banished to unsafe and unheated huts, animal shelters, or primitive forest dwellings until they are no longer bleeding. Chhaupadi has negative impacts on women’s health and safety, promotes gender discrimination, increases their social ostracization, and raises concerns about human rights and social justice. Nepal’s new Constitution has specific protections for women’s health and equality, and the government is under increasing pressure to end this harmful practice for good. This memorandum to three key Nepal Ministries proposes to adopt, support, and implement a new government directive for a nine-year Initiative starting in 2021 (NCY 2078) to eliminate chhaupadi in Nepal by 2030 (NCY 2087). The Empowering Nepali Women Initiative is designed to educate and mentor men and boys about women’s health and equality through hands-on training and active participation in incentive programs in their families, villages, and wider communities. The goal is to train, educate, monitor, and evaluate at least seventy-five percent of all men and boys in the four Western Provinces on gender equality and women’s empowerment in six years, resulting in a fifty percent reduction in community practice of chhaupadi by 2030 (NCY 2087). The program model is based on successful male inclusion programs in twenty-two countries on gender equality, harmful gender norms, and family caregiving programs, and the primary beneficiaries are Nepali women, their families, and communities.