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Concerns about gender equity have been at the fore of discussions and analysis of NGO interventions and action since the 1970s. Gender equity, defined as equal rights to access, opportunity, and participation for men and women, has always been a distinctive feature in the programmes of Gram Vikas, a leading NGO in the Indian state of Orissa. Conscious efforts to identify and address these issues began in the mid-1980s. Several specific initiatives have been made to create a level playing field between women and men in the village communities where Gram Vikas works, and within the organisation. There have been resistance and challenges to several of these interventions, and while some of them have embedded themselves to create lasting impact, others have had only limited effect.

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