Often used to equate with women, the word “gender” has become increasingly dynamic and important to humanitarian issues. Once in the field, most humanitarian workers quickly realize the different challenges facing women and men, girls and boys and the importance of addressing gender-based needs in emergency situations.
To adapt to these needs, IOM has made positive strides in its attempts to institutionalize and mainstream gender into its planning and actions. In recognizing the different needs of men and women and creating strategies to adhere to them, IOM has been able to more accurately accommodate those needs in times of crisis.
While every emergency is different, the aim of all emergency missions is to protect people from the harmful repercussions of the crisis. The Emergency and Post Conflict (EPC) Division of IOM is tasked with addressing these issues. In each emergency there are key cross-cutting gender issues that are relevant to all emergency activities, which EPC directly addresses.