Bangladesh is ranked among the countries with the lowest female employment rates in the world. Only 29% of the workforce is constituted by women, and over 87% of these women work as unskilled labour; this is characterized by the lack of formal employment, limited access to social protection coverage and low wages. In order to raise unskilled construction workers from extreme poverty, Prip Trust created the project ESLFCW (Ensuring Sustainable Livelihood for Female Construction Workers), aiming to train poor females to do professional jobs within the construction sector and to create a trade union in order to support them in claiming fair wages and defend them from sexual harassment.
Lessons Learned are:
(1) Asset/ specialty chosen by women must be selected according to market demand.
(2) Training certification is crucial in order for beneficiaries to be respected and avoid harassment and abuse.
(3) When dealing with marginalized groups, need to consider ways to change the perception of and/or provide support to the group at large, in addition to beneficiaries, during project design.
(4) It is not enough to give an asset or training, activities must focus on confidence too
(5) Support beneficiaries in market access.
(6) Investigating seasonality at the program design stage.
EEP/Shiree. Lesson Learning Report:Ensuring Sustainable Livelihoods for Female Construction Workers (ESLFCWs). Shiree, Dhaka, Bangladesh (2015) 51 pp.