South and South East Asia: Call for participants for the young women’s feminist advocacy and leadership institute

Shirkat Gah
Are you a young South or South East Asian woman, an emerging leader and committed to social justice in your community? If so, we welcome your application to participate in a regional institute to take place in Bangkok, Thailand, June 13 to 18, 2005.
Organised by The Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID), Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN), ActionAid, Creating Resources for Empowerment in Action (CREA) and Shirkat Gah Women's Resource Centre.
The Institute will be organized around the following themes (with a focus on 3 of the key issues identified):
  1. Feminist Leadership and Advocacy: The Now and Future
  2. Frameworks and Tools Towards an Integrated Approach for Social Justice
  3. “The What”, “The Hows” and The Role of Young Women
  4. Regional and Global Frameworks, Strategies and Opportunities

These themes will be woven around discussions on four key themes that emerged at the the Asia-Pacific Beijing +10 process:
  1. the impact of globalization and trade liberalization on job security and labor rights of women;
  2. peace-building and enhancing women and girl’s abilities to work on this issue;
  3. combating the increase of HIV/AIDS
  4. trafficking and protecting women migrant workers’ human rights; and
  5. securing women’s sexual and reproductive rights in the face of the attacks from political and social intolerance.
The Institute will allow participants to:
  • explore the challenges faced by young women in their different contexts;
  • share their personal experiences of successful and not-so-successful initiatives in their own communities;
  • gain a theoretical and historical background of feminist organizing around specific issues;
  • facilitate skills-building on deepening analysis and advocacy;
  • develop new strategies to effect real change for women’s rights and social justice in the region.
The Institute will allow participants to come together to explore key elements of the challenges they face in their contexts, provide opportunities to learn new leadership skills and explore effective strategies for changing the models and institutions that enable current inequalities. Throughout the event, the intersection of feminist leadership, advocacy, activist strategies, and the issues examined will be underlined. Participants can expect to be challenged, to return home with a deeper analysis, tangible tools and skills, to enrich their current activism and engagement in social justice.

To participate you must:
  • be a young woman (between 18 and 30 years of age);
  • be resident in any of the following countries (Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Phillipines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, China);
  • have a minimum of 2 years experience working on gender issues, women’s rights, development and/or youth activism (voluntary or employment);
  • be able to demonstrate how you will use what you learn at the Leadership Institute in your work and how you will continue to participate in any follow-up activities of the group; and
  • have a good working knowledge of the English language.
Cost: Participants will be required to pay a registration fee of US$50. This will cover materials, meals and accommodation for the meeting.

Scholarships: A limited number of scholarships are available. Scholarships will cover materials, meals and accommodation costs for the duration of the meeting.

To apply to participate in the Leadership Institute, please submit the application form and requested documentation by 10 May 2005.

The Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID)
AWID is an international membership organisation working to promote gender equality, sustainable development and women's human rights. The Leadership institute is an initiative of AWID’s Young Women and Leadership Program.

Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era (DAWN)
DAWN is a southern based international network of women activists and scholars who engage in feminist research and analysis of the global environment and are committed to working for equitable, just and sustainable development. Over the last two decades, DAWN has been actively advocating for alternative development processes that emphasise the basic survival needs and rights of the world's poorest, especially women.

ActionAid is an international development agency whose aim is to fight poverty worldwide. Formed in 1972, for over 30 years the organisation has been growing and expanding to helping over 13 million of the world's poorest and most disadvantaged people in 42 countries worldwide. In all of its country programmes, ActionAid works with local partners to make the most of their knowledge and experience.

Creating Resources for Empowerment in Action (CREA)
CREA is a not for profit organization based in New Delhi, that aims at empowering women to articulate, demand and access their human rights by enhancing women's leadership and focusing on issues of sexuality, reproductive health, violence against women, women's rights and social justice.

Shirkat Gah Women's Resource Centre
Shirkat Gah Women's Resource Centre was established in 1975 as a non-hierarchical collective to integrate consciousness raising with a development perspective and to initiate projects translating advocacy into action. Shirkat Gah's vision is that of ‘fully empowered women in a just and vibrant, democratic and tolerant and environmentally sound society, where equity and opportunity are ensured for all, resources sustainably used, where peace prevails and where the state is responsive". Its mission is women's empowerment for social justice and social justice for women's empowerment.

Young Women’s Feminist Advocacy and Leadership Institute
Bangkok, Thailand
June 13-18, 2005


Part 1: Please provide the following information.

1. Surname:
2. Other Names:
3. Date of Birth:
4. Nationality:
5. Address:
6. Telephone:
7. Fax:
8. Email:
9. Organisational Affiliation:
10. Position:

Part 2: Please respond to the following questions.
  1. Why do you want to attend this Institute?
  2. Why do you consider yourself a leader? What are your personal goals and aspirations as an emerging leader?
  3. What skills and experiences would you be able to share with other participants at this Leadership Institute? Would you be willing to present an optional session on an issue that you are involved in? (If so what would the topic of your session be?)
  4. How long have you been involved in gender equality issues? In what capacity?
  5. What do you think are the main challenges facing women in your region? Describe your “community” and identify the main challenges facing women in this community.
  6. Describe the main goals of the organization or project you are currently involved with. What is your role in this organization?
  7. Describe a campaign or advocacy activity you would like to take forward following the Institute.
  8. How will you share the information and skills you acquire from the Institute with your community?

Part 3:

A. Please include your curricula vitae (CV) or resume.

B. Please also include information about the organization or project with which you are currently involved (brochure, publication, etc.).

C. Include a letter from the head of your organization supporting your participation in this workshop and your participation in any follow-up activities that may emanate from this workshop.

D. If you are applying for a scholarship – please write a one page note stating why you would require this support.

Application deadline: 10 May 2005 (no late applications will be accepted)

Completed application should be sent to:

Association for Women’s Rights in Development
2nd Floor Community House, 41 Salt River Road, Salt River 7925, Cape Town, South Africa
Tel: 27 21 447 8821, Fax: 27 21 447 9617