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The Hidden Economics of Remarkable Women (HERO) Made possible in part through funding form the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Developing Male Allies in Congo

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It’s technically legal for Congolese couples to co-own land. But in practice, that’s not often the case.

On today’s episode of HERO, the last of the season, we look at how a Women for Women International program in the Democratic Republic of the Congo worked with families to try to overcome long-standing cultural barriers to women owning land. We hear from a mother, father, and son who participated in this program. Also, Women for Women International’s country director in Congo, Rachel Boketa, explains how this project attempted to change men’s and boys’ opinions about female property ownership. Special thanks to Francis Shok Mweze, who acted as our field producer for this segment.

Boketa’s program was supported with a grant from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The United States currently gives more money to international development than any other country in the world, largely through USAID.

In the second part of the episode, host Reena Ninan talks to Isobel Coleman, the deputy administrator of USAID. Coleman explains why the Biden administration is doubling funding toward gender programming and how USAID plans to invest that financing. This conversation first took place at FP’s Her Power Summit, an annual gathering all about women’s leadership.

Finally, we are conducting a listener survey to better understand what you like about the podcast and what you’d like to hear in future episodes. All participants in the survey who provide their email will be placed in a raffle to win a $25 Amazon gift card. To participate, follow this survey link. Thank you very much for your time and feedback.

About The Hidden Economics of Remarkable Women (HERO):  Could empowering women in the workplace be the simplest way to boost the global economy? Host Reena Ninan talks to women around the world changing the status quo in surprising ways to improve their lives, their families, and ultimately, the world. The Hidden Economics of Remarkable Women (HER♀) is a Foreign Policy podcast supported in part by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. HER listeners can learn more about these topics by signing up for special access to an FP Analytics policy brief on gender equality. Sign up by clicking here.  See All Episodes

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More The Hidden Economics of Remarkable Women (HERO) episodes:

Striving for Affordable Child Care in Bangladesh

The country passed an act in 2021 aiming to increase access to child care. But implementing the law has its own challenges.

Protecting Migrant Domestic Workers

Migrant workers make up nearly 20 percent of all domestic workers. And in Gulf states such as Saudi Arabia, the number is much higher.

How Shea Nut Collectives Are Empowering African Women

The vast majority of shea nut producers are women. But most don’t reap the benefits.

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Foreign Policy Playlist

From Foreign Policy, a curated podcast where each week we introduce you to one podcast from around the world—shows featuring interesting stories or compelling interviews and analysis on international affairs. And occasionally you’ll hear audio from our own newsroom. Join FP’s Laura Rosbrow-Telem for this curated podcast.

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Africa Forward: Season 1

Introducing our debut season Africa Forward, a podcast supported by Africa50 and produced by FP Studios. Introducing Africa Forward, a podcast from Africa50 produced by FP Studios. Hosts Isha Sesay and Carol Pineau explore infrastructure challenges, successes, and opportunities in Africa.

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The suspected Chinese spy balloon drifts to the ocean after being shot down off the East Coast as seen from Surfside Beach, South Carolina, on Feb. 4.  Randall Hill/Reuters
The suspected Chinese spy balloon drifts to the ocean after being shot down off the East Coast as seen from Surfside Beach, South Carolina, on Feb. 4. Randall Hill/Reuters

The Balloon and the U.S.-China Relationship

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U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken canceled a much-anticipated visit to China after the discovery of a Chinese surveillance balloon flying over U.S. territory. The very public spat over ...Show more

JERUSALEM, ISRAEL - DECEMBER 29:  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Minister of National Security Itamar Ben Gvir react after sworn in at the Israeli parliament during a new government sworn in discussion at the Israeli parliament on December 29, 2022 in Jerusalem, Israel. Conservative Benjamin Netanyahu and a bloc of nationalist and religious parties won a clear election victory last month and will be sworn in as government to the Knesset today. This completes Netenyahu's political comeback with a record sixth term in office.  (Photo by Amir Levy/Getty Images)
JERUSALEM, ISRAEL - DECEMBER 29: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Minister of National Security Itamar Ben Gvir react after sworn in at the Israeli parliament during a new government sworn in discussion at the Israeli parliament on December 29, 2022 in Jerusalem, Israel. Conservative Benjamin Netanyahu and a bloc of nationalist and religious parties won a clear election victory last month and will be sworn in as government to the Knesset today. This completes Netenyahu's political comeback with a record sixth term in office. (Photo by Amir Levy/Getty Images)

Israel’s Democratic Decline

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The new Israeli government is said to be the most far-right, religiously extreme, and ultranationalist coalition in the country’s history, led by Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-ser...Show more

A Russian flag at the Embassy of Russia is seen through a bus stop post in Washington, DC on April 15, 2021. - The US announced sanctions against Russia on April 15, 2021, and the expulsion of 10 diplomats in retaliation for what Washington says is the Kremlin's US election interference, a massive cyber attack and other hostile activity. President Joe Biden ordered a widening of restrictions on US banks trading in Russian government debt, expelled 10 diplomats who include alleged spies, and sanctioned 32 individuals alleged to have tried to meddle in the 2020 presidential election, the White House said. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)
A Russian flag at the Embassy of Russia is seen through a bus stop post in Washington, DC on April 15, 2021. - The US announced sanctions against Russia on April 15, 2021, and the expulsion of 10 diplomats in retaliation for what Washington says is the Kremlin's US election interference, a massive cyber attack and other hostile activity. President Joe Biden ordered a widening of restrictions on US banks trading in Russian government debt, expelled 10 diplomats who include alleged spies, and sanctioned 32 individuals alleged to have tried to meddle in the 2020 presidential election, the White House said. (Photo by MANDEL NGAN / AFP) (Photo by MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images)

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