In Cape Town, South Africa, a group of 27 women and men from Colombia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Georgia and South Sudan are right now in the middle of a follow-up training within the International Training Programme (ITP) on 1325: Women, Peace and Security.
The programme is run by Kvinna till Kvinna and Indevelop and this group first got together in Sweden in October for three intense weeks of training. Since then, they have been working on different projects within the areas of gender equality and peace work. And now, reunited again, we asked Sara Munárriz Awad from Colombia and Lysette Kavira Mukandirma from DR Congo: what has the training meant for them so far?
“This experience has given me the opportunity to meet women and men in different cultures, countries, contexts and with different customs, working for social transformation and gender equality. And also the possibility to share these experiences with my organisation and women in Colombia that are active in many processes in relation to women, peace and security. The change project I have been working on is to develop a virtual platform for broadcasting and making visible the work of organisations and women in Colombia that allow local and national implementation of the 1325 Resolution” says Sara Munárriz Awad, Communications Officer at the feminist NGO Corporation of Research and Social and Economic Action (CIASE).
“This training has done a lot for me. First, it brought in me the will and the strength to do something for my society, and the conviction that my contribution to any change in my society really counts, even though I think it is insignificant. After the training, I was able to get a new position which I considered as a good opportunity. I am now active in pushing for more activities that can help to increase women’s participation in the local elections. And as one of eight advisors to the Minister of State I am now focal point for gender equality. This allowed me to include the change project I have been working on during the training programme in the annual work plan of our State Ministry. The project is to be funded with 70 % by the government!” says Lysette Kavira Mukandirma, State Minister Adviser in charge of local elections issues in DR Congo.
Facts: Kvinna till Kvinna and Indevelop have been running the ITP 1325 since 2011. The programme is Sida-financed and targets men and women representing civil society organisations, state institutions and agencies, academia and the private sector. The participants come from more than ten countries and are committed to bring resolution 1325 from policy to practice. Every year, around 80 women and men take part in the ITP 1325.
Anna Sundén, Project Manager for ITP 1325 at Kvinna till Kvinna