Sailing the flag for gender equality

United over shared values, countries across the Indo-Pacific region welcomed ADF instructors to lead women, peace and security education and training activities.

CAPTION: RAAF officer Squadron Leader Karyn Ey conducts an ice-breaker activity with personnel from the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces during an ADF led workshop in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Story by Flying Officer Lily Lancaster. Photo by Corporal Brandon Grey.

On Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022, ADF members are learning more from their regional partners about their challenges, experiences and insights, while sharing their own.

Gender in military operations instructor, Squadron Leader Karyn Ey, is excited to walk into work every day and speak to people across the globe about how to make it a safer place.

“Women don’t usually speak up as they are often in the minority,” Squadron Leader Ey said.

   

“So for me, part of what we do is ask people to remember gender when they are working or deploying. But also being alongside these women, encouraging them, empowering them and giving them a voice.”

Head of Force Integration Major General Kathryn Toohey visited the team’s classrooms at the Cambodian National Centre for Peacekeeping Forces, Mines and Explosive Remnants of War Clearance.

There, Squadron Leader Karyn Ey and other mobile training team instructors facilitated discussions on gender in military operations and United Nations (UN) child protection with commanders soon to deploy on UN missions.

Major General Toohey was proud to see the nations learning together on such an important topic.

“It is well known that conflict disproportionately affects women and girls and can exacerbate their pre-existing disadvantage,” Major General Toohey said.

“Acknowledging and integrating the different understanding, experience and capabilities of women – and gender more broadly – into all aspects of peace operations is essential for successly sustaining peace.”

During Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2022, the ADF is working alongside partners in Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Philippines, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh, Brunei, Timor Leste, Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore, strengthening ongoing cooperation through shared values of gender equality and women’s empowerment.


 
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