UN Women in Action
UN Women promotes women’s participation and leadership in all aspects of peacebuilding, humanitarian response, recovery and reconstruction. Recent work includes:
- By connecting prominent women politicians and civil society representatives from seven countries in the Western Balkans, UN Women fostered the establishment of the Regional Women’s Lobby for Reconciliation, Peace and Security (RWL SEE). Managed by UN Women in Kosovo*, the group’s achievements include groundbreaking engagement between women in Serbia and Kosovo. Lobby chairperson and the Minister of Dialogue in Kosovo, Edita Tahiri, was appointed Chief Technical Negotiator in the Kosovo-Serbia dialogue that led to the 2013 Brussels Agreement. Women parliamentarians from both sides have committed to greater cooperation in encouraging the political participation of young women.
- UN Women helped bring together the Kosovo Government (including security sector actors), civil society and the United Nations to develop Kosovo’s first UN Security Council Resolution 1325 National Action Plan, a process that resulted in a Government commitment to cover 51 per cent of the plan’s costs.
- Survivors of conflict-related sexual violence in Kosovo gained new legal recognition and protection through a law recognizing their status, and a commission will soon be established to help connect them to essential services for support. UN Women has provided instrumental advice, including legal analysis and guidance on civil society engagement. National authorities have also endorsed an action plan to ensure survivors access justice for crimes committed against them.
- Stigma associated with conflict-related sexual violence has begun to decline in Kosovo through concerted awareness raising, such as through the 2015 display of 5,000 dresses and skirts on clotheslines in Pristina’s stadium, some of which were worn by women when they were raped.
- Towards implementing the Kyrgyz Republic’s National Action Plan on UN Security Council resolution 1325 on women, peace and security, UN Women provided gender equality training to 2,000 students as well as local law enforcement bodies in 23 municipalities of the Kyrgyz Republic. Over 1,100 students mobilized peers to promote gender justice and peace in schools. For nearly 2,500 students, the My Prosperous Farm course cultivated agricultural and life-skills, geared towards gender sensitivity, later marriage and girls’ economic empowerment.
- For the first time since the end of the conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina, civil society organizations, assisted by UN Women, provide institutionalized continuous psycho-social and relief services to women survivors of conflict-related sexual violence, torture and trauma.
- UN Women helped the Albania State Police conduct its first training and mentoring programme for mid-ranking police women, a step towards promotion into operational command roles. Five women have graduated, and two have already taken on new leadership positions, including one as the first woman Chief of Commissariat.
- Reforms in Kosovo have contributed to more inclusive and accountable police services that ensure women’s rights and security. UN Women has backed the Police Academy’s adoption of a five-day training module on gender equality and women’s human security, the creation of a Gender and Human Rights Office, and the establishment of the Association of Women in Kosovo Police. Now considered a role model in the region, the Association successfully lobbied for including gender perspectives in the five-year human resources strategy of the Kosovo Police.
- Four free legal clinics established by UN Women in partnership with national officials improved access to justice for over 3,000 people in Georgia in 2015, the majority of whom were women. Among internally displaced women who used legal assistance, 60 per cent turned to the clinics.
- UN Women assisted six municipalities in Serbia to deepen engagement with women in disaster risk assessments and planning, leading to gender mainstreaming of local disaster risk reduction plans. A Gender Assessment of the Refugee and Migration Crisis in Serbia and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia shed light on the specific needs, priorities and risks facing women and girls, and the extent to which current responses in transit countries meet those needs.
- After floods struck Tajikistan in 2014, UN Women helped conduct a rapid gender assessment of vulnerabilities, needs and priorities. Evidence generated has been used to inform the new national disaster risk management strategy. Training for 20 members of local rapid response teams, equipped them with new tools to provide psychological assistance, with an emphasis on gender responsiveness. They applied new skills in assisting people affected by floods in 2015.
* Under UN Security Council resolution 1244 in all references.