Leadership

What We Do

WLP’s work uses the programmatic strategies of (1) leadership and advocacy curriculum development, (2) training at the grassroots, national, and regional levels (3) strengthening civil society, and (4) women’s human rights advocacy and movement building.

WLP’s programmatic strategies are overlapping and mutually supportive, with the following objectives for each:

Curriculum Development: To create culture‐specific training and advocacy manuals that furnish grassroots activists in the Global South with materials to strengthen democracy activism, the women’s movement, and youth with materials in leadership, ICTs, political participation, organizational capacity building and evaluation, and advocacy for women’s human rights.

Training: To implement flexible and accessible participatory leadership training for an increasing number of civil society organizations and grassroots women so they can acquire the skills necessary to actively shape their future, assume leadership in their communities, and become activists committed to strengthening democracy and women’s rights.

Strengthening Civil Society: (1) To increase partner organizations’ capacity in strategic program implementation and evaluation, sustainable organizational development, ICTs, and mobilization and management of human and financial resources, to strengthen their ability to implement empowerment programs and foster women's agency in developing moderate, secular civil societies. (2) To build partners’ capacity to take collective action by providing them with opportunities to cooperate and deepen relationships among themselves and with other civil society organizations at the national and regional levels.

Women’s Human Rights Advocacy and Movement Building: (1) To mobilize women and youth at the grassroots to effect social change and legal reform for gender equitable societies. (2) To build and strengthen grassroots, national, and international networks that promote democratic governance and peace‐building and increase the capacity of marginalized, moderate civil society activists to effectively engage in prominent networks with opinion leaders, policy makers, and academics. (3) To increase accurate and timely coverage of women's rights and democracy issues by leveraging conventional and alternative media to raise awareness and engage a broad spectrum of individuals in constructive dialogue.

Leadership

One participant was divorced and living with her children in her father’s house. She was very passive at home and never objected to the decisions that other family members imposed on her, even when she disagreed. The divorce made her feel like an unsuccessful person and took away all her confidence to make decisions.

After participating in the workshop, she decided to say no and demand her rights. She realized for the first time that she is a leader - she had raised her daughters on her own without their father; she earns an independent income as a teacher and is able to offer a good life for her children without help from others. Her family was surprised and amazed at the change in her and how she began to express herself with confidence. They asked her, "What did the workshop do for you? You are totally a different person."
~ Bahrain Women's Association grassroots leadership workshop, Manama, Bahrain, 2014

Leadership and empowerment are at the very core of the Women’s Learning Partnership’s work.

Leadership Concept

We believe in leadership that is participatory, horizontal, and dialogue-based. Our participatory leadership concept promotes sharing power and respect, which creates a group synergy that both empowers the individual and mobilizes collective action towards democratization. The concept forms the basis for all WLP publications, trainings, advocacy and relationships.

WLP aims to empower women to take on leadership roles in their families, communities and societies in order to realize their own visions of a better future. We strive both for a quantitative change in the number of women in formal leadership roles, and a qualitative change in the type of leadership women exercise. Not only women, but all of society, will gain politically, economically, and culturally by leveling the power imbalance between men and women.

Women's leaderships: Will the battle for development in Mauritania go down this path?

August 31, 2009

Related Articles

From 13 to 16 March 2009, the Association of Women Heads of Families (AFCF) organized a training workshop for trainers in female leadership in collaboration with the Democratic Association of Moroccan Women (ADFM) and with support from Women’s Learning Partnership for Rights Development and Peace (WLP). According to Ms. El Moctar, president of AFCF, female leadership is feasible in Mauritania. “We cannot wait for a favorable situation. One cannot expect that people give us the opportunity to evolve as leaders. It is up to us, women, to win and create this dynamic of leadership, whatever the political, environmental, economical, and social situation."

Leadership Manual Now Available in Kyrgyz

June 23, 2009

Related Articles

Many of CAC’s Leading to Choices workshop participants, from Isfana and Naryn, were able to apply what they had learned when they became involved in the Fall 2008 elections, campaigning for local women candidates. Two of the Leading to Choices participants became deputies on local councils.

Profound and Lasting Impact: Evaluating Workshops in Afghanistan

May 5, 2008

Related Articles

During the evaluation workshop, participants commented that even though a year had passed since they took part in the training, they remembered everything they had learned because the training had a profound and lasting impact on their lives. One woman described how the Leading to Choices curriculum gave her the courage to convince her uncle to send his daughter to school.

WLP Convenes First Regional Institute in Central America

February 26, 2008

Related Articles

The Institute brought together twenty-four participants from seven countries in the region: Brazil, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, and El Salvador. The participants, all of whom were experienced trainers and activists, welcomed the leadership concepts and methodologies offered in the manual, as well as the application of the leadership concept and methodology to diverse fields, including economic justice, women’s health and reproductive rights, violence against women, indigenous rights, human rights, youth advocacy, and microfinance.

2007 Arabic eCourse with participants from Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, and Palestine

October 3, 2007

Related Articles

The eCourse focuses on five themes from WLP’s seminal work, Leading to Choices: A Leadership Training Handbook for Women: developing participatory and personal leadership skills; communicating persuasively; creating a shared vision; and mobilizing resources. Over the ten-week period, participants will complete reading and writing assignments and participate in online discussions and group activities.

Snapshot of Leadership Workshops in 2005

September 25, 2007

Related Articles

Here are some examples of leadership training workshops that took place in 2005. These stories offer a sampling of the different themes present in WLP's leadership workshops.

Prototype Persian Course with Participants from Iran and Afghanistan

March 21, 2007

Related Articles

From January-March 2004, four leading Afghan and Iranian participants worked together over a ten-week period to develop, test and adapt the curriculum for the Persian eCourse. Course sessions focused on four primary areas of leadership learning: exploring the concept of participatory leadership and the ethics of good leadership, examining personal leadership skills, developing a personal vision statement, and formulating a shared vision statement.

Kazakh Women Activists Highlight Importance of Intergenerational Relations

August 13, 2006

Related Articles

Many women activists left the workshop with renewed energy for social advocacy. "After attending the workshop I am convinced of the importance of being a leader in my own life. I shall work out a plan of action for the next five years. I want to know more about technology and how to use technology effectively to strengthen public advocacy for the welfare of women," said one participant.

Syndicate content
S:SSO to Sakai