Heart of Peace campaign update
On 20 September we launched our new research ‘From the Ground Up‘ and campaign to put women at the heart of peace and thanks to you it’s got off to a brilliant start. Here’s a quick update on how it’s going.
In the news
On Thursday 20 September the research and campaign appeared in the Guardian newspaper (a full page article on p17 of the main paper and a trail on the front page) and as an online feature. The Guardian Data team also put together a brilliant blog post about women’s rights and peace. We also wrote a guest post for flagship UK feminist blog The F Word.
So far hundreds of you have written to your MP calling for 15% of the UK’s peacebuilding fund to be directed to women’s rights, and some of you have even had responses. As a result we know that some MPs have already raised the issue with the Foreign Secretary, which is fantastic.
If you haven’t yet done so please write to your MP today, it only takes two minutes. If you have, please let us know who they are and if they respond so that we can follow up with them. Just drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org
Sharing women’s experiences
On Thursday we also released our joint research with ActionAid and the Institute of Development Studies looking at women’s perspectives on peace and vital role in peacebuilding at the local level. We’re thrilled that the executive summary has been downloaded from our website over 300 times in just one week. You can find the summary and the full report on our Reports page.
Wave of change
There have also been some positive developments around women and conflict in the news over the last couple of days:
- The Institute for Inclusive Security in the US has announced $2m (£1.2m) funding each year to advance women’s participation in peace efforts. The Institute’s Chair, Swanee Hunt said: “When it comes to the value of women’s strong participation in securing lasting, just peace, there’s no longer a debate. Instead, there’s a need for meaningful action.”
- And in a very welcome move the UK Foreign Secretary William Hague pledged £1 million to support the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative on Sexual Violence in Conflict.
It’s encouraging to see women, peace and security rising up the international agenda but even better that good words are being backed up with funding and resources.
But the job isn’t done, there are women the world over who having endured war find themselves blocked and undermined as they try to build a meaningful peace for themselves and their families.