PWAG is both, a dynamic network and committed organization! This means we always have some news to share with you. This time we like to give you an update on the personnel changes in our International Office and some information on what has been going on in our network recently. Also we would like to draw your attention especially to our PWAG General Meeting on 2nd May.
Your PWAG Team
Save the Date!
2 May 2017 – PWAG General Assembly, 6 pm at the Bundeshaus in Bern (followed by refreshments and time to network)
This year, after visiting the National Council’s special session, we are invited to a feminist guided tour through the Parliament Building by Margret Kiener Nellen, who is a Council member as well as member of the PWAG Board.
During the General Assembly we will deal with last year’s annual report and financial statement, provide an update on current activities and we will let you know what we have been planning for the near future.
Shortly before, we will send you the annual report 2016.
We kindly ask you to register by email ([email protected]) until 27th April 2017.
Personnel Changes in the International Office
At the end of 2016, there were a number of changes in the International Office and a new team started its work at the beginning of 2017. Meike Sahling handed over the leadership of the International Office to Flurina Derungs.
For four years, Meike Sahling, has been the Director of PWAG. In addition to her operational duties, she has in particular overseen finances and fundraising, as well as current projects. With great dedication and persistence, Meike highlighted PWAG’s themes in her dealings with foundations, emphasising the uniqueness of the organisation and drawing attention to our work.
Flurina Derungs, PWAG’s new director, has campaigned for many years at the national and international level for women’s rights and for gender equality. In the field of development cooperation, she supported East African women’s organisations and helped them mobilise their communities to prevent gender-based violence. As Regional Commissioner for Gender Equality, she coordinated gender equality activities in Switzerland and, as a social worker, promoted self-determination for women in detention. Prior to her work at PWAG, Flurina Derungs worked at the Centre for Gender Studies at the University of Bern, where she conducted transdisciplinary research and taught in the fields of Gender & Development, Gender & Human Rights, Gender-based Violence and Women, Peace & Security. She holds a Master’s degree in Social Work and Social Policy and a degree in Gender, Justice, Globalisation.
In March 2017 Insa Bloem joined our team as an intern. Currently completing her Masters degree in Peace and Conflict Studies she gained work experience in human rights, gender and social justice, as well as action theatre as a volunteer in India and Bangladesh. She holds a Bachelors degree in «Languages and Cultures of the Subindian Continent» and Sociology from Hamburg University. Insa is particularly interested in gender perspectives in humanitarian aid and international criminal law, protest cultures and memory politics.
PWAG is looking for a responsible person for communications and fundraising (60-80%).
The announcement for the post you can find here.
From our Network
Side event at UN Climate Change Conference in Morocco
In view of increasing conflicts over resources, the question about the role of women in negotiations around the impact of climate change becomes more urgent. Women are affected by climate change in different ways and they also have different strategies to deal with it. Under the patronage of the French Minister for Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, Segolène Royal, PWAG organised a well-attended side event, «Women at Climate Change Negotiations in Fragile Contexts», at the UN Climate Change Conference, COP22 in Marrakesh, Morocco. The Moroccan PeaceWoman, Fawzia Talout Meknassi and several participants discussed the relationship between climate change and the promotion of peace in conflict areas, as well as aims and measures to involve women in decisions concerning climate change.
For the WikiPeaceWomen project, a large number of coordinators, under the leadership of board member Kin Chi Lau, have collected hundreds of new biographies of peacemakers from all over the world and published them on www.wikipeacewomen.org. In addition, many of the existing biographies of the 1000 PeaceWomen have been brought up to date.
PeaceWoman Leila de Lima arrested
Philippines Senator Leila de Lima, our PeaceWoman of the Month in October 2016, was arrested on drug trafficking charges. Find more information on our website.
New Activist Alliance WE CAN’T KEEP QUIET
On 18th March, together with more than 10.000 women and men, PWAG took to the streets of Zurich in protest against sexism and racism and stood up for gender equality. As a reaction to the election of US president Donald Trump and in solidarity with the Women’s Marches in Washington and around the world the new activist alliance WE CAN’T KEEP QUIET was founded in Switzerland. We are very happy to be part of this inspiring alliance, together with over 50 different Swiss feminist organizations, networks, activists and other interest groups. Read more…
Also we encourage you to visit the WE CAN’T KEEP QUIET website!
The UN-Committee’s Concluding Observations on the implementation of CEDAW in Switzerland
In November 2016, the UN-Committee monitoring the implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination of women (CEDAW) has dealt with women’s human rights situation in Switzerland. In addition to the Swiss state reports, the shadow reports published by civil society organizations contributed to a differentiated understanding of the implementation of CEDAW in Switzerland. Together with a number of other organizations PWAG was able to contribute to the shadow report written by the NGO Coordination post Beijing Switzerland. The shadow report stresses especially the issues of unequal pay, family balance and poverty as well as social security.
In its Concluding Observation the CEDAW-Committee urged Switzerland, among other things, to take measures concerning the issue of women, peace and security. Switzerland needs to intensify its efforts to include women in negotiations and mediation activities – one of PWAG’s main goals. Furthermore, Switzerland must strengthen its efforts to include a gender perspective in strategies to prevent violent extremism and analyse the impact of small arms and light weapons on the situation of women. These recommendations encourage us!
You can read the UN-Committee’s Concluding Observations here.
The shadow report published by the NGO Coordination post Beijing Switzerland can be found here.
Call for Nominations
We can reach our goal of making the work of one million PeaceWomen visible only through working together! This is why we are always in search of new PeaceWomen for our WikiPeaceWomen online platform. You can find more information on the project website. And in case you would like to nominate a person we invite you to use this nomination form.
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