The Gender Studies and Human Rights Documentation Centre (Gender Centre) is a non-governmental, non-profit organisation based in Ghana and dedicated to promoting women’s human rights. The Centre’s approach to addressing gender issues is two-pronged. First, we conduct quantitative and qualitative field research in order to provide facts and testimonies of specific gender issues. Then, based on the findings of the research, we hold meetings, workshops and training programmes in order to promote activism and awareness about the gender issues in question. Our projects are often ongoing, spanning many years and expanding into new communities.
For the Gender Centre, gender issues are societal problems that affect women and men differently. We acknowledge that in many areas – business, health, education, religion, politics, etc. – women and men are not treated equally, usually because of social norms that dictate specific gender roles. In many ways such inequalities prevent balanced participation on the part of men and women and can often lead to deleterious effects for the female population. Our research supports such claims on gender issues through original and existing research. We aim to correct troublesome gender norms though a grass-roots approach in Ghanaian communities.
The Gender Centre first looks at data and reports of social issues. These can come from official government agencies, such as the Ghana AIDS Commission, or less formal media reports of what is happening in the country. The Gender Centre investigates the authenticity of existing data and then initiates its own research to supplement the data with a gendered perspective or provide a more qualitative aspect to the hard facts. We try to focus on issues that relate to the wellbeing of Ghanaian women in the hope that through our work we can improve women’s situations.
The Gender Studies and Human Rights Documentation Centre is, first and foremost, a centre of research. We have a thorough collection of publications on gender issues in Ghana, as well as the rest of Africa and all over the world. We keep records of national acts and laws relating to gender issues as well as United Nations meetings and reports on the status of women worldwide. Our personal research is primarily in the fields of gender studies and human rights as we try to understand and address the gender issues facing Ghana.