Using a design thinking approach, the project’s first stage focused on better understanding the daily lives of women and girls in cocoa-growing communities – moving beyond demographics to highlight their aspirations, behaviours and attitudes.
KIT’s team conducted research with adolescent girls, young mothers and their ‘influencers’ and stakeholders in the cocoa value chain (e.g. parents, husbands, teachers, health workers, community leaders, or women’s groups). Participatory and iterative in nature, the research aimed to uncover the unmet needs of these women and illuminate the current state and root causes of their (dis)empowerment.
This insight serves as the starting point to co-create new ideas to engage both men and women to improve gender equality in their households and communities. By grounding recommendations in local needs and contexts, the project will simultaneously generate new opportunities to make lasting improvements to household income and human rights protections in Mars cocoa supply chains. The outcome of this “Resilience Journey” will inform further strategies and approaches with Mars’ suppliers and implementation partners, as part of its Cocoa for Generations approach to protecting children.
This project is executed in partnership with Pabla van Heck, an independent social innovation and design thinking consultant.