Our approach

Maasai women in Kenya hold hands in unity

We have refined our approach to work in greater depth with women’s movements in our focus countries, and at regional and global levels, to ensure women’s voices are heard, their rights are realised, and their lives are free from violence.

What are women's movements?

Women’s movements are, put simply, the women who are changing the world. They are broad social movements campaigning for women's rights at national, regional and international levels.

Women’s movements throughout history have campaigned for votes for women, protection from domestic violence, for equal pay, and against sexual harassment. They get their collective voices heard and bring about long-lasting change for women. 

Why now?

We are at a global turning point for women's rights. In the past three decades, women’s rights have been enshrined through declarations, policies and global frameworks. Womankind has been at the heart of advocating for these positive advances.

Yet now more than ever, women’s rights are at threat from rising fundamentalisms, financial crisis, political turmoil and backlash against feminism. The power dynamics that drive inequality between women and men remain in force at all levels.

Our unique approach

Together, with women’s rights organisations and movements, we are working towards…

1. Policies and laws that tackle discrimination and protect women.
2. Universal access to appropriate, quality services that protect and restore women’s rights.
3. Social change that supports the rights of all women and girls.

1. Delivering change for women and girls

Our partners within movements develop and deliver a huge range of different projects and services which help women and girls to transform their lives.

As well as more familiar solutions such as shelters for women escaping violence, or programmes to support new women MPs and community leaders, our partners create innovative programmes and uncover new paths to successful outcomes, from mobile legal aid clinics to refugee paralegal teams.

With our partners we help women join together, often for the first time, to talk about what they want to change, and then we help them to achieve it.

2. Supporting women’s rights movements and feminist action

Womankind supports women’s movements to strengthen and grow, including through technical support, communications, connectivity and shared learning, advocacy platforms and funding opportunities.

We don’t have Womankind offices in the countries where we work because our history and focus has been on strengthening civil society and supporting local women’s rights movements.

3. Take collective action at an international level

Women’s rights are at the heart of everything we do. We’ve been entirely dedicated to supporting women and girls since we were founded on International Women’s Day in 1989.

With such strong links with the women’s rights movement in Africa and Asia, we are the leading UK authority on international women’s rights. We use our expertise and that of our partners to influence government and ensure that women’s rights are at the heart of the UK’s international development work.

We recognise that the underlying causes of gender inequality, discrimination and poverty will not be solved by services and projects alone. Time and resources are needed to influence decision makers at local, regional, national and international levels, changing the way people think about and act on women's rights issues.