What do the Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, Syria and Ukraine have in common?
Like almost all other countries in the world, they’ve been hit by Covid-19. They are also states experiencing deadly conflicts, lack of good governance and food insecurities. However, their crucial common denominator is a group of extraordinary women peacebuilders defending the rights of marginalized and vulnerable communities most at risk during the pandemic.
On April 24th, the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security gave some of these women a platform to raise awareness about the challenges they are facing on the ground, and to also highlight the opportunities for systemic change presented by the crisis. The webinar featured four extraordinary women peacebuilders, whose profiles and main messages we would like to share.
Two members of the Ban Ki-moon Centre team joined the webinar to learn more about local peacebuilding efforts and to discover ways in which the organization could support grassroots activities. One of the four pillars of the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s work is Mediation. Under this pillar, the Centre promotes the inclusion of women and youth in peace processes, acknowledging their vital role in decision-making and in the implementation of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
Women peacebuilders prove to be the leaders for the most vulnerable and marginalized communities, managing not only crisis settings but fighting for a sustainable, equal and inclusive post-conflict society. Access to health infrastructure and digital technology, preservation of human rights, as well as economic empowerment and the inclusion of women in decision-making must be on top of every government’s agenda. Forgetting about half of the population means looking at only half of the solutions. COVID-19 could be a chance to rethink current political structures and create strong and resilient societies. Let’s grab this opportunity!
If you want to support or engage in peacebuilding efforts, explore the grassroots organizations linked below and read about the amazing women right here:
Women Peace Network, Myanmar Center for Civil Society and Democracy, Syria
ANZAFRIKA, Democratic Republic of Congo Theatre for Dialogue, Ukraine
Watch the webinar in full here: