Collective Power at Women Deliver 2023 Conference

On a light blue background, we can see both the UN Trust Fund logo and the Women Deliver 2023 Conference logo. At the bottom, colorful cut outs of photos from five (5) representatives of UN Trust Fund grantee organizations can be seen. At the top corners are blue and orange designed flowers.

If you arrive in Kigali, Rwanda today, 18 July, you will see hundreds, if not thousands of feminists and activists chatting at the airport, making connections, exchanging ideas about how to advance gender equality and sexual and reproductive health and rights. The reason? The Women Deliver 2023 Conference (WD2023), involving over 6,000 women’s rights activists and advocates, has just begun a few miles down the road.

The UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women (UN Trust Fund) is participating in this important global conference, presenting the impact and wealth of practice-based knowledge of its 27-year partnerships with civil society and women’s rights organizations working to end violence against women and girls across the world.

We asked representatives of some of these organizations who are attending WD2023 to tell us what excites them most about the conference. Two themes emerged.

Inclusive, gender-responsive and action-oriented space

Sivananthi Thanenthiran from the Asian-Pacific Resource and Research Centre for Women (ARROW) said she believes the conference will be an empowering space to “discuss progress, gaps, and identify opportunities” to transform ideas into actions. Representing an organization that works to centre the role of women living with disabilities as leaders and advocates for laws that protect their human rights in Bangladesh, she hopes to connect with decision makers to inspire further support for feminist networks.

Blessing Duru from Alliances of Africa (AfA), a UN Trust Fund grantee under the Spotlight Initiative, thinks the conference will provide an inclusive space to advocate for “safe physical and virtual spaces” for women and girls to report violence, seek support and access essential services. AfA developed “Save Her”, an online directory of service providers in Nigeria’s Imo State, which has enabled survivors to access service providers and report violence.

Collective advocacy for better resources for women’s rights organizations

Alal Single Dora of THRIVEGulu in Uganda wants to create networks of like-minded activists to lobby for better resourcing of civil society and women’s rights organizations. A key component of THRIVEGulu’s project to end gender-based violence is increasing women’s economic empowerment through providing financial literacy and ultimately financial independence to community women. Brenda Nancy Akidi, also from THRIVEGulu, added that joint advocacy at WD2023 is key to sustaining gender equality.

Vandana Nair from the Centre for Catalyzing Change (3C) in India believes the conference offers a way to address interconnecting issues that contribute to perpetuating violence against women and girls, such as gender equality and climate change. She hopes to promote movement “from thought to action, to support from challenges, to leadership and accountability” — as an holistic approach that is evident in 3C’s work to empower young girls and adolescents and protect them from sexual violence.

Discussions on SHINE, our online hub for global knowledge exchange on ending violence against women and girls, are happening live on the Women Deliver 2023 Connections Group. At the UN Trust Fund’s booth at WD2023, visitors are also invited to read short forms of our latest knowledge products and listen to our brand new podcast series “Small and Mighty!”

Where to find us: Booth K24 Kivu tent, Kigali Convention Center

UN Trust Fund grantee organizations featured: Sivananthi Thanenthiran, Executive Director of ARROW; Blessing Duru, Programme Manager of Alliances for Africa; Dora Alal Single, Director of THRIVEGulu; Brenda Nancy Akidi, Senior Empowerment Manager at THRIVEGulu; Vandana Nair, Lead, Strategic Investment and Adolescent & Young People at the Centre for Catalyzing Change.



UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women

The UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women is the only global grant-making mechanism dedicated to eradicating all forms of #VAWG.