| oday, on International Women's Day, the European Commission is publishing a call for proposals on "Women & Sustainable Energy" making €20 million available for grants to implement activities promoting women's entrepreneurship in the sustainable energy sector in developing countries.
This call for proposals is based on the potential of increasing access to sustainable energy as well as on past and current efforts at addressing gender imbalances that women are facing with regard to access to resources, including energy.
Energy and Gender are recognised as key drivers for development and economic growth. Economic empowerment of women is one of the four pillars of the EU Gender Action Plan. Women’s entrepreneurship is seen as an important source of growth, prosperity and poverty reduction with positive impact on families and children, health and nutrition, communities and the national economy at large. Combining energy and gender will also contribute to the fifth and seventh Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls and SDG 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all).
The main objectives of this call for proposals are to create jobs and opportunities for entrepreneurship in developing countries for women and to increase their capacities through trainings and skills development to operate in the sustainable energy sector. Advocacy and awareness raising about gender issues as well as sustainable energy are also important components of this call.