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Oxfam’s commitment to gender equality is rooted in twenty years of analysis and practical action in line with feminist goals. Our understanding of gender mainstreaming has been to focus on programmes whose immediate beneficiaries are women and their dependents, based on continuing evidence that women are the majority in the most economically needy groups in almost all societies, and that women’s experience of poverty consists not only of economic want but of social and political exclusion. This is culturally condoned in the vast majority of countries throughout the world.

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