Mary Howard lost several family members to Ebola, but she herself won the battle with death. But when returning to her community from the care center, the stigma of the disease made her an outcast. Then the women’s rights organisation WONGOSOL stepped in.
“My colleagues and I are here to support the demands of the Syrian women human rights defenders that they must have a voice in the peace talks – they represent 51% of the Syrian population!” Our Secretary General Lena Ag blogs from Geneva.
”I’m always afraid of the military. But those who are here are willing to have a dialogue – so then I am too,” says Fátima Muriel. She is one of the women human rights defenders who joined government and military officers in Villavicencio, Colombia, for a training in peace work built on equality, co-organised by The Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation.
There should no longer be any doubt that gender equality is essential for achieving sustainable peace. Yet, time and again the UN fails to enforce its own decisions on women’s equal participation in all security work. Could a new resolution be the turning point?
“An unforgettable experience! It is invaluable for me to know that there are more people fighting for the same things,” says Salome Chagelishvili. She was one of over eighty participants in a unique activist meeting in Georgia, co-organised by The Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation.
For many years, our partner organisation Women’s Studies Center in Palestine has worked with a successful program to support women who have experienced grief and trauma due to war and conflict. Recently, they shared their experiences with women human rights defenders from Syria.
2015 was in many ways a hard year for those who fight for equality for all people. However, #femdefenders’ fight for women’s rights also led to several victories. Our Secretary General Lena Ag writes about that which gives us hope for the future.
At the same time as millions of people have been forced to flee the war in Syria, the number of child marriages in the region has increased at an alarming speed. The Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation’s partner organisations in Lebanon and Iraq have started cooperating to try to stop this development.
As Sweden is drastically reducing the number of refugees it takes in, the situation for the many refugees stuck in the Balkans is growing increasingly worse. Women no longer dare to report sexual abuse because they risk being stuck on the “wrong” side of the border, writes our Secretary General Lena Ag, who has just returned from visiting the huge refugee camps in the region.
”It has been a huge barrier to the development of a democratic society!” 20 years after the Dayton peace agreement ended the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, women human rights defenders’ judgement of its consequences is harsh.