Archive for the ‘Org spotlight’ Category

Org Spotlight: Association for the Development and Enhancement of Women

Friday, January 23rd, 2015

Association for the Development and Enhancement of Women

adew_logoThe Association for the Development and Enhancement of Women (ADEW) originally got its start when a group of development professionals launched a micro-finance project for garbage collectors in Zaballeen in the 1980s. During the projects implementation, the developers decided they should expand the project to help marginalized groups in Cairo. They identified low-income women of female-headed households as the vulnerable group they would target. This initial development work turned into ADEW in 1987 when the group of twenty men and women decided to register the Association with the Ministry of Social Affairs as a private, voluntary, non-governmental organization.

Today, ADEW still runs credit programs but now it also offers literacy programs, health services, and legal awareness seminars. Some of ADEW’s achievements include being the first Egyptian nongovernmental organization to identify female heads of households as a target group and the first to establish a micro credit program using a group lending methodology. They were also the first to address the problem of lack of official documentation and work on solving this problem.

ADEW’s mission is to create suitable conditions for Egyptian women on both personal and societal levels. They seek to change the culture of the community and women’s image in society, while also changing laws and policies. Their vision is then to give women, especially female heads of households, their legal, economic, social, political, and cultural rights in order to become full citizens and decision-makers within the family. Through equality with men they hope to give women the same opportunities in order for women to gain the ability to make their own choices.

Org Spotlight: Aurat Foundation

Thursday, January 1st, 2015


Aurat Foundation

Established in 1986, as a national, non-profit, non-governmental organization under the Societies’ Registration Act 1860, Aurat Publication and Information Service Foundation (Aurat Foundation/AF) is committed to create widespread awareness and commitment for a just, democratic and caring society in Pakistan, where women and men are recognised as equals, with the right to lead their lives with self-respect and dignity. Over the last 28 years, Aurat Foundation has come to be recognised nationally and internationally as one of the leading institutions creating, facilitating and strengthening civil society groups and networks for promoting trust and collaboration among citizens to mobilize public pressure for women’s empowerment in the country.

 Aurat Foundation has its Head Office in Islamabad, and five regional offices in the provincial capitals in Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar ,Quetta and Gilgit, and 37 Field Offices. Further, it has a countrywide network of voluntary citizens’ groups and individual activists in 128 districts in the country. These groups include Citizens Action Committees (CACs), Resource Groups and Aurat Foundation Resource Centres (AF-RCs) and Information Network Centres (INCs).

The Foundation has also emerged as a major support institution for civil society organisations working for social change at the community level.

 The goals of the Foundation are to:

  • To enable women to acquire great access to knowledge, resources and institutions;
  • To influence attitudes and behavior for a social environment responsive to women’s concerns and people-centred issues;
  • To facilitate citizens’ active participation in the process of social change and governance at all level.

Org Spotlight: Figi Women’s Rights Movement

Friday, December 26th, 2014

The Fiji Women’s Rights MovementFWRM


The Fiji Women’s Rights Movement (FWRM) was founded in 1986. In 2001, FWRM drafted a constitution and registered it under relevant Fiji legislation. The multiethnic and multicultural FWRM’s purpose is to “work toward the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women, promote the equality of women, and support democracy and human rights in all areas of life in Fiji and the Pacific Island region”.

FWRM is a non-governmental organization that works through institutional reforms and attitudinal changes in order to remove discrimination against women. FWRM promotes feminism, democracy, the rule of law, good governance, and human rights, while striving for ways to provide leadership opportunities for women in Fiji.

Objectives of FWRM are:

  1. To publicly address all issues affecting women’s human rights, status and opportunity within Fiji including cultural, domestic, legal, social, health, economic, employment, religious and political situations
  2. To advocate improved policy and legislation on issues affecting women’s rights
  3. To promote equal access to services by women and equal opportunity through appropriate enabling actions
  4. To ensure the Movement remains a well managed and sustainable organization, giving leadership opportunities to women, networking and sharing experiences with others in the Pacific, regionally and internationally

In 2011, FWRM released Herstory: Celebrating 25 Years of Balancing the Scales, a chronicle of the most significant moments of the Movement’s history. Herstory begins with by describing how a group of 56 women gathered to discuss how change could be made in order to combat the patriarchy. Milestones, such as the Family Law Act of 2003, illustrate the continued perseverance that the organization displays in order to see action taken. The report ends with quotations from those who believe in the Movement.

FWRM looks forward to their next quarter century of operation. They believe in their continued ability to make a difference, because of their past ability to make positive progress during coups and even despite being persecuted by the military.


Org Spotlight: ASOMOBI

Friday, December 19th, 2014

La Asociación de Mujeres Organizadas de Biolley 




La Asociación de Mujeres Organizadas de Biolley (ASOMOBI), translated as Organized Women’s Association of Biolley, was founded in 1997 by a group of women from the community of Biolley, Costa Rica. The founders had a shared desire to fight to improve the lives of families in the community and surrounding towns. ASOMOBI receives financial and technical support from national and international donors who believe in the capacity and leadership of the group.

In an attempt to extend benefits to families, roasting coffee is grown by families and husbands. ASOMOBI also focuses on rural tourism around coffee and other attractions in the area, including development projects centered on ecotourism.

ASOMOBI’s objectives are to build capacity for their members, strengthen rural community tourism, establish conditions for sustainability in operations for ASOMOBI coffee, promote conservation measures, and strengthen the administrative and operational capacity of the organization.

They operate under the mission:

“We are a group of women organized community Biolley we seek to improve the quality of life for our families and the natural and social environment through the sale of products and services and working with the forces of the community.”

Currently ASOMOBI is working to rebuild operations after a fire in 2012, which destroyed Posada Rural Cerro Biolley, leading reduced operational capacity for ASOMOBI specifically and decreased tourism, and increased unemployment for the entire community.

Org Spotlight: ICIWF

Monday, December 15th, 2014


Information Center of the Independent Women’s Forum

The “Information Center of the Independent Women’s Forum” (ICIWF) is a non-profit, non-governmental organisation registered in 1994. In the beginning, the goals of the organisation were: support of regional women’s initiatives; development of educational programs for women; development of the information exchange between women’s organisations and the institutionalization of the women’s movement. However, during the last few years new aims were added, such as the inclusion of women in the development of local self-governance; development of local communities, partnership on the territories and engendering municipal and local policies.

Today, one of the main aims of the ICIWF is organising its activities as a new social institution for empowering women and developing the women’s movement.

One of the strategic directions of the ICIWF’s activities for the last few years has been the development of partnership between social activists from different social movements in order to strengthen their understanding of the fact that reaching gender equality is one of the most important aims in forming the Russia’s civil society.

In order to reach these aims the ICIWF has developed four interrelated programs:

  • innovative approaches to empowering women in frame of feminist practice
  • women’s participation in urban and local policies
  • informational and publishing activities
  • international activity

Org Spotlight: 1 Million Women

Friday, December 5th, 2014

Basic RGB

1 Million Women


1 Million Women is an Australia based organization that focuses on what women can do to fight climate change. Founded by Natalie Isaacs in 2009, 1 Million Women is based on the concept that since women do the majority of household purchasing, women can have a huge impact on energy consumption and waste creation. The organization focuses on the wasteful lifestyles of richer countries, and believes that it is these countries that must take ownership to combat environmental degradations.

1 Million Women focuses on many areas that affect the environment. They advocate for the reduction of consumption, increased recycling, and finding alternative methods to high energy-use  activities (i.e. using public transportation over driving a car to get everywhere). In every instance, they use a million women tag, such as, “if a million women cut household electricity by 20%, we can make 2 coal-fired power stations redundant”. They advocate large change that only requires small actions. If enough people act, even minor changes will make a big difference.

The 1 Million Women site covers climate change news from around the world, and it offers everyday examples of how to reduce your own carbon footprint. 1 Million Women is an organization that combines women’s collaboration and empowerment with simple ways to get involved and fight climate change.

Org Spotlight: SOC Films

Sunday, November 30th, 2014

SOC Films: Stories that matterSharmeen Obaid Chinoy HR

SOC Films is a Karachi based film house specializing in investigative and socially motivated content. With Academy and Emmy award winning journalist and documentary filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy at its helm, SOC Films seeks to set a new standard for groundbreaking cinema that furthers the art of fiction and non-fiction story telling in Pakistan.

From following the lives of child suicide bombers, to bringing to light the plight of Iraqi refugees, Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy’s efforts to highlight the voices of marginalized communities will be echoed and furthered in the work of SOC Films which will continue to produce content that breaks boundaries and challenges audiences. Two such films that SOC Films produced are Humaira: The Game Changer and Humaira: The Dream Catcher. These two films celebrate the achievements of Humaira Bachal, an activist fighting for girls’ education in Pakistan.

Through the induction of its Karachi office, SOC Films intends to groom a new generation of directors, producers and writers who will be equipped with the skills and training to produce quality films for both Pakistani and international audiences.

Org Spotlight: SAHA Global

Friday, November 21st, 2014

SAHA GlobalSAHA Global

Saha Global is an organization that seeks to empower women in rural communities in the Northern region of Ghana and West Africa to solve their village’s need for clean water and electricity by providing leadership opportunities. The word “Saha” means opportunity in Dagboni, which is the local language spoken in Northern Region Ghana. In order to accomplish this mission, Saha recruits leaders from around the globe to come to West Africa through their Global Leadership Program. Participants in the Global Leadership Program train local women to start profitable social-entrepreneurship ventures. The revenue that is earned from these businesses is managed by the women and it stays in the community.

In the beginning Saha was focused primarily on water, but it has expanded its efforts to include access to electricity. People living in rural communities of the Northern Region of Ghana lack access to safe drinking water and are forced to drink from fecal contaminated waters sources. In addition to the absence of safe water, 30% of the people living in the rural communities rely on kerosene lamps for lights because they do not have access to electricity. These lamps are not only hazardous to people’s health, but also release harmful black carbon and carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. To date, Saha Global has launched 71 clean water businesses and 5 solar electricity businesses, which serve 38,108 people. 100% of these businesses are still in operation today. Their commitment to monitoring, combined with our use of simple and locally available technology, has been the key to their 100% sustainability rate.

Interactive Map: Org Spotlights

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

As you, our readers know, every week the Global Gender Update includes a spotlight on an organization that focuses on gender issues around the world. We believe that it is important to highlight the hard work that people are doing in the United States and abroad to alleviate gender discrepancies. Each spotlight links to a longer blog post on our blog page, global.gender.current. The blog then contains a hyperlink to the organization’s website so that any interested parties have the opportunity to educate themselves further, and maybe even get involved. We try our best to represent as many countries as possible. Evidence of this work can be found by going to the Org Spotlight Archive and checking out our interactive map. As different organizations are spotlighted in the newsletter, there location is added to the map.

Org Spotlight: GirlForward

Friday, November 14th, 2014



GirlForward is an NGO in Chicago that focuses on empowering refugee girls ages 12-21 who have been resettled in the city from war-torn countries around the world, and who are now building new lives for themselves and their families in the United States. It is the only NGO in the country that works to empower and instill confidence in refugee girls. GirlForward provides the girls with mentorship, educational programs, and leadership opportunities through programs that focus on four themes: Wellness, Wisdom, Wallet and World.

The organization started in 2012 when the founder and director, Blair Brettschneider recognized that there was a gap in providing refugee girls with the assistance, support, and resources that they needed. During the refugee experience, the girls in particular face challenging responsibilities and social isolation, while trying to acclimate to a new country, language, and culture.

Through individual mentorship, educational programs and leadership opportunities, the organization’s mission is to build a community of support for the girls amongst themselves as they go through the process of acclimation into the United States, as well as creating a resource center that the girls can go to for support and assistance.  These programs address the biggest challenges that refugee girls face when relocating to the United States.  GirlForward’s vision is to empower refugee girls because through girls, the entire community can be enriched and strengthened.