The Commonwealth Foundation facilitates civil society participation and contribution to the Commonwealth’s Plan of Action for Gender Equality (PoA) 2005-2015.

The PoA was negotiated in 2004 by Commonwealth Ministers responsible for women’s affairs and endorsed by Commonwealth Heads of Government in 2005, receiving input from over 200 civil society organisations.  The PoA provides the framework through which the Commonwealth contributes to the advancement of gender equality.

The PoA focuses on 4 key areas:

  1. Gender, democracy, peace and conflict
  2. Gender, human rights and law
  3. Gender, poverty eradication and economic empowerment
  4. Gender and HIV/AIDS

The Commonwealth Gender Plan of Action Monitoring Group (CGPMG) was established in 2005 to function as a mechanism for monitoring, evaluating and reviewing the PoA in order to strengthen its implementation. In addition to the 21 representatives from National Women’s Machineries (NWMs), four civil society representatives are members of the Monitoring Group. Civil society involvement with the Monitoring Group is supported by the Commonwealth Foundation. The annual CGPMG meeting takes place in the wings of the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women conference.