AWID’s work is structured through multi-year programs known as Strategic Initiatives. Each strategic initiative includes a range of activities from membership consultations and surveys, primary research and dialogues with policy makers (including targeted advocacy) to capacity building institutes, regional networking and information dissemination. In addition, AWID works to ensure that the specific priorities and voices of young women are strongly represented in all our initiatives.
Recognizing that movements without resources cannot be sustained, this initiative undertakes research and advocacy in order to significantly increase the amount and quality of funding to support women’s rights work. The initiative was primarily developed to tackle the urgent need of women’s organizations and movements to access more resources on better terms and to transform their relationship to funding – moving beyond a culture of “scarcity” to see funding and resource mobilization as a critical aspect of their political agendas and key for building strong feminist movements. At the same time, the initiative also works to improve the ability of women’s organizations to use these funds in ways that are strategic, bold and effective.
Recognizing that regressive political-religious projects are gaining ground all over the world with particularly negative consequences for women’s rights, this AWID initiative hopes to contribute to greater strategic thinking, dialogue and advocacy on religious fundamentalisms by women’s rights organizations and movements. It aims to develop more knowledge and resources in the area across regions and religions, foster a deeper and greater shared understanding of the way fundamentalist projects work, grow and undermine women's rights, and share strategies that have been used by women’s rights advocates to resist and challenge religious fundamentalisms.
Violence against Women Human Rights Defenders (WHRDs) is increasing around the world. AWID’s WHRD Strategic Initiative aims to raise awareness of violations of the rights of WHRDs; strengthen mechanisms for their protection; and contribute to more gender-responsive and effective responses to WHRDs at risk. The WHRD Strategic Initiative also mobilizes AWID’s members and broader constituency to take urgent action to protect WHRDs at risk and develops resource materials for WHRDs around the world.
Feminist movements and organizations around the world face numerous challenges to their strategic capacity and ability to effectively empower women and advance their human rights. Through our Building Feminist Movements and Organizations strategic initiative, AWID promotes reflection and action on ways to strengthen women's movements and organizations worldwide. The goal of this program is to assist advocates in organizational strengthening and movement building and help them develop ways to work not only individually but collectively to achieve the common goals of women’s rights and gender equality.
AWID’s Women’s Rights Information Strategic Initiative aims to build knowledge and understanding of the forces that undermine or promote women’s human rights at the global level, put new issues on the agenda of the women’s rights movements globally and amplify the voices and perspectives of marginalized women from around the world. The initiative provides a wide range of information resources in English, Spanish and French, from interactive e-mail discussions and e-bulletins to a high quality global feminist website and print communications. Highly accessible and based on the multitude of voices and experiences, these information resources are an invaluable tool in the promotion of women’s human rights.
The International Forum on Women's Rights and Development is both a conference and a call to action. The largest recurring event of its kind, the AWID Forum brings together women's rights leaders and activists from around the world every three years to strategize, network, celebrate, and learn in a highly charged atmosphere that fosters deep discussions and sustained personal and professional growth. The next forum will be held in 2012 in Istanbul, Turkey.
This initiative seeks to contribute to advancing feminist understandings of the relationship between development and women’s rights issues with a particular focus on the aid effectiveness agenda and the Financing for Development process at the UN as entry points to this debate. Towards this end, the initiative produces and disseminates knowledge on developmental issues with special emphasis on women’s perspectives; undertakes advocacy actions and alliance building to influence development policy and practices; and mobilizes women’s organizations and groups on development discussions and key policy processes.
AWID’s Young Feminist Activism program seeks to build a multi-generational movement by amplifying the voices of young women so that their experiences and ideas are reflected in feminist discourse and activism. The Young Feminist Activism program supports and mobilizes younger activists by creating provocative opportunities for engagement, innovative research projects, capacity-building activities and multi-generational dialogues linked to AWID’s initiatives to promote change. The program also works with participants to create independent spaces for young women to debate, discuss, analyze and plan.