Giving women a voice
A project carried out under the Lithuanian NGO programme aims at bolstering civil society in the country by strengthening the advocacy work of women.
Lithuania sits at number 55 on the Global Gender Gap Index for 2014 published by the World Economic Forum. Narrowing this gap is one of the main goals for the project “Women’s Voice for Progress”, carried out of by the Lithuanian Center for Equality Advancement in cooperation with KUN Center for Gender Equality in Norway.
As part of the project, which receives about €112 000 in support from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, women from all over the country gathered in in the Lithuanian parliament, Seimas, to discuss issues that they, as women, are facing in modern day Lithuania. Among the issues raised were under-representation in different decision-making bodies, discriminatory family policies and violence against women. In addition to giving women from all over the country an opportunity to talk about gender-related problems, the conference also meant to show what the Lithuanian parliament’s agenda would look like if equal political participation was a reality.
In addition to providing an opportunity for Lithuanian women to come together and talk about common issues, the project has also been active on the political level. The Center for Gender Equality drafted a response to the UN Committee on Elimination of Discrimination of Women, focusing on advocacy skills and other competences relevant for Lithuanian NGOs.
The project also took action on the domestic arena, drafting up comprehensive recommendations on how to strengthen women’s rights in Lithuania. At the present stage, these recommendations are being spread throughout the country through a public awareness campaign. At the same time, round table discussion are being held to discuss possible ways of encouraging politicians not to forget issues that are important to women.
Global Rights, Local Actions: Women’s Voice for Progress
Center for Equality Advancement
Type of Institution:
Advocacy organization (NGO)
Human rights advocacy faces serious challenges in Lithuania. Civil society lacks knowledge and tools for effective representation of vulnerable groups. The project aims to develop women's rights advocacy skills and competences of Lithuanian NGOs. It seeks to strengthen civil society's influence on legislative initiatives in order to improve the quality of democracy. One of the core activities is preparing and presenting an alternative report to the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW). This will be partially guided by the results of 4 regional focus groups. Awareness raising campaigns and advocacy events will be organised throughout the project, promoting non-discrimination and CEDAW recommendations as an advocacy tool. The Norwegian project partner KUN Centre for Gender Equality will contribute its know-how in the field of women's rights. It will assist in organising and take part in the Norwegian-Baltic NGO forum in Vilnius. Target groups – politicians, media, NGOs working with gender issues, women and society at large. Indirect beneficiaries – politicians directly and indirectly dealing with gender issues.