2020 is a big year for gender data in Kenya, for at least three reasons:
First time-use survey.
Right now, the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics is training enumerators to carry out the country's first time-use survey, with the help of UN Women and other partners. Once completed, it will mean Kenya is no longer the only country in the East African region that hasn't conducted one, according to Maureen Gitonga, gender statistics program specialist for UN Women. Time-use statistics are quantitative summaries of how individuals allocate their time over a specified period — and can shed light on how much time women spend on unpaid care work, for example.
By conducting further analysis of existing household surveys, UN Women, together with UNICEF and KNBS, has been able to derive poverty profiles for women at national and county level. "In essence, for the first time in Kenya, we should be able to know where poor women are," Gitonga said. The partners are also analyzing Kenya's most recent demographic health survey to develop a women empowerment index "so that when you say, 'Maureen is empowered in Kenya,' we know what indicators you are looking at," Gitonga explained. The index should help the country report on women's access to health care, for example, as well as the existence and enforcement of legal frameworks to advance gender equality.
Tracking gender expenditure.
"If you were to ask me what Kenya is investing in women's equality, I wouldn't be able to tell you how much women's programs receive in the ministry of agriculture, the ministry of forestry … I'm not able to tell you the level of investment," Gitonga said. Now, UN Women is working with Kenya's national treasury and UNICEF to help better track allocation and code expenditure on gender across agencies. "The SDGs, you can't work on them in isolation. So the fact that we'll be able to see where the government is investing more or less and then make policies or legislation that will address these gaps … that is progress."