Tag Archive | "women’s rights"

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A New Constitution for the People: An Interview with Egypt Constitutional Committee Member Houda Elsadda

Posted on 23 January 2014 by

Established in September 2013, the 50-committee was entrusted with the task of drafting Egypt’s new Constitution. Dr. Hoda Elsadda, one of the five women members of this committee, an academic and a human rights activist, reflects on the highlights and key learning from this most interesting and complex journey which is undoubtedly a landmark moment in the history of Egypt.

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Famed Egyptian Feminist Nawal Saadawi Visits Moroccan Activists, As Egypt’s Fate Hangs in the Balance

Posted on 02 July 2013 by

Rabat, July 1st 2013

Dr. Nawal Saadawi had just heard the press statement in which the Egyptian army gave President Mursi a 48 hours-ultimatum to meet the demands of the people, after millions took to the streets to demand he step down.

Egyptian Feminist Nawal Saadawi Visits WLP partners in Morocco

Egyptian Feminist Nawal Saadawi Visits WLP partners in Morocco

It is thus with great enthusiasm that, a few minutes later, the octogenarian feminist — definitely young at heart and full of humor — went out to meet the audience waiting for her at the headquarters of the Moroccan Organization of Human Rights (OMDH) in Rabat.

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Another revolution in Egypt: Insights from Egyptian feminist Amal Abdel Hadi

Posted on 29 June 2013 by

Interviewed by Lina Abou-Habib
CRTD.A / WLP-Lebanon

Cairo, 29 June 2013

Less than 24 hours separate us from the large scale demonstration planned tomorrow in Egypt, calling for the departure of Islamist President Mohammed Mursi. Mursi was declared president in June 2013 following elections which were hailed in many parts of the world as being the first “free” elections in Egypt. However, and only a few months after his reign, disillusion and anger have swept into the Egyptian population who is challenging this new ruler as well as the Muslim Brotherhood. The President and his entourage is accused of incompetence and of failing the demands of the revolution.

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Amidst New Waves of Protest, Activists Consider Economic Justice & Women’s Rights

Posted on 28 June 2013 by

By Olivia Alabaster, on behalf of WLP Lebanon/CRTD.A

CAIRO: On the opening day of WLP-Lebanon/CRTD.A’s regional conference on economic justice and women’s rights, delegates representing women’s organisations from Lebanon, Egypt, Palestine, Jordan, Bahrain and Morocco met in Cairo to discuss the implications of Egypt’s current IMF (International Monetary Fund) negotiations for women.

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WLP Central Asia Regional Training – An Indescribable Experience

Posted on 16 May 2013 by

WLP guest-author, Bahriniso Shamsieva, is a Mine Action Project Assistant for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Tajikistan Office and also an activist with local NGO Marriage and the Family. She joined women from Kazakhstan,  Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan at the WLP Central Asia Regional Training of Trainers Institute on Women’s Leadership and Political Participation in Shymkent, Kazakhstan this April as a participant. Bahriniso shares her reflections from the training below.

Bahriniso

Dear sister! I want to share my impressions on the WLP leadership training seminar in Shymkent, Kazakhstan. I have the most vivid and warm memories of the event, because it was an amazing opportunity to meet with so many unique women—both from neighboring Central Asian countries as well as from abroad. I realized that women around the world have shared vision for the world and our problems are very similar. And we can all easily understand each other and support each other. WLP as an organization is using their knowledge and experience to help us to unite and support each other.

Personally, working with these wise and active women who share similar passions, brought me great happiness and pleasure. Meeting with politician trainers— such as Asma Khader and other no-less inspiring women leaders— face-to-face, hearing them speak, and learning so much from them was an indescribable experience.

There were three of us women from Tajikistan at this Institute, and we were so pleased to have this opportunity. At this time, Tajik women are in need of such leadership trainings, as these trainings may help change their mentality and help them realize their place and significance, and find the strength to become more active in the personal and public arenas. While many of the preconditions for this kind of change are in place in our country, women still do not use their full potential and are not very active in politics and public life.

I would like to take the opportunity to thank all of the organizers of this workshop training on behalf of the Tajik delegation and myself personally for inviting us and for this opportunity!

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Reflections from WLP Central Asia Regional Institute

Posted on 10 May 2013 by

WLP guest-author, Saida Arifkhanova, is trainer and facilitator for journalists with twenty years of experience and a public relations specialist in Uzbekistan. She joined women from Kazakhstan,  Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan at the WLP Central Asia Regional Training of Trainers Institute on Women’s Leadership and Political Participation in Shymkent, Kazakhstan this April as a participant. Saida shares her reflections from the training below.

Saida Blog Post

This training made a very unique impression on me. The participants of this training were beautiful and stylish women, possessing strong character and leadership qualities. Participants were instantly happy to see each other and it was clear that something invisible united them. In all, there were women from Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan. And there were the four of us—women from Tashkent— representing Uzbekistan.

Gradually, I learned more about those who took part in the training and realized that each of these women has a unique position, and that each is successfully serving her community. Many participants work on issues such as human rights, women’s rights, and protecting women from abuse. I could sense their resolve to act decisively to achieve social change. I could also tell that these women held harmony and calm in their hearts, so when I heard about the struggles they faced everyday in their work I felt confused.

So, I asked many of the women if they were happy. At first my direct question seemed strange to them, and they did not answer me directly. Yet, as the days went by we began to communicate more closely, and many of the women came up to me and began talking to me. Gradually, our communication became more intimate and heartfelt.

I learned that each woman has a complex history behind her—the story of what pushed them to dedicate their lives to creating change. For some, that pivotal event was the experience of an ancient tradition of custom—for example bride kidnapping in Kyrgyzstan or norms that deny women a voice and a vote, and confine her to her role in her family. Some of what I heard was new to me, as I grew up in a family where my parents always discussed issues openly and made decisions together.

Some of the participants shared first-hand accounts of recent conflict in Kyrgyzstan and human rights abuses. As they shared their experiences and their stories, I realized that these women are making history and that each hard won freedom gives them personal strength and inspiration. So many of these life stories were piercing and unique. I began to see clearly that all of our women from Uzbekistan possess the same features and abilities as our peers in other Central Asian countries, but we have been completely overwhelmed by the need to maintain stability in our country.

During this training it became obvious that our countries are no longer as  similar to one another as they had been before and our realities are quite different today. Tajikistan has experienced a war, Kyrgyzstan has been through two revolutions and many difficulties, Kazakhstan is still overcoming the sharp shock of transition, and Turkmenistan faced leadership transition. In Uzbekistan, we are still struggling to maintain our stability, at the cost of many of the gains of independence. Still, while women in our countries do not speak the same language or share the same experiences, we very clearly understand each other and can relate to each other’s adversities.

Through the training it became very obvious that all these women are educated and independent, and that they will continue to do what they do despite these adversities. However, they still benefit from this access to better tools to support them and the work that they are doing for their communities.

Namely, they benefit from acquiring special skills and knowledge of topics such as,  modern public relations technology, effective communication skills, time management skills, and techniques for developing a vision. In addition to the training provided, this may require a special training facilitated by experts in all these areas. It is obvious that these women will be able to comprehend these complex topics, and from what I saw at the training these women could benefit from even more investment in their tremendous capacities.

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What do women want in the post-Arab spring era?

Posted on 26 April 2013 by

Two years after the start of the Arab Spring, women and girls in the Arab region seem to be the big losers of a process that promised much in terms of democracy and justice but has thus far delivered too little.

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Happy News for Women’s Rights in Morocco: Kesbat Mehdia Women Become First-time Landowners!

Posted on 26 March 2013 by

Women of the Kesbat Mehdia Tribe in Kenitra, Morocco celebrate receiving land compensation for the first time.

Women of the Kesbat Mehdia Tribe in Kenitra, Morocco celebrate receiving land compensation for the first time.

Since 2007, Soulaliyate women have been fighting for their rights and campaigning hard against the exclusion and discrimination they face living on their tribes’ collective lands. For years, they engaged officials and supervisory authorities at the local, national, and international levels in dialogue; held interviews with national and international media; organized key protests and sit-ins; prepared slogans; and mobilized other women’s groups in a movement of collective empowerment, experience sharing, learning, and solidarity to bring about change.

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Malala Continues to Inspire: Local High School Art Society Auctioning Work to Support Women’s Rights

Posted on 04 February 2013 by

Painting by Christina He of Poolesville High School National Honors Art Society

Painting by Christina He of Poolesville High School National Honors Art Society

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Changing Attitudes on Personal Status Codes in MENA

Posted on 28 January 2013 by

by Olivia Alabaster for WLP Lebanon/CRTD.A

Two speakers from Lebanon each discussed how a unified, civil Personal Status Code would not only help protect the rights of women but that it would also combat sectarianism.

Manar Zeaitar spoke about the issue of civil marriage; recently in the news given the President’s vocal support for it after a couple announced they had held the country’s first civil marriage ceremony, in line with a 1936 decree.

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Learning Democracy: A Conversation with Egypt’s Amel Abdel Hadi

Posted on 28 January 2013 by

by Olivia Alabaster for CRTD.A WLP Lebanon

On the sidelines of the conference, Amel Abdel Hadi, one of the founders of the New Woman Foundation in Egypt, spoke about her work with the coalition and the situation in her own country.

While the women’s movement has been gaining more and more support over the years, the Arab revolts have given a new dimension to the cause, Abdel Hadi said,

This revolutionary era has also strengthened the Equality Without Reservation coalition, she added.

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Women must continue to fight for equal rights, conference urges

Posted on 25 January 2013 by

By Olivia Alabaster for WLP Lebanon/CRTD-A

In the first session of the Equality Without Reservation conference Thursday, an emphasis was placed on the need to continuously work for women’s rights, even once conventions have been signed.sans-titre

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