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Building the collective power of women with disabilities - AWID Forum 2016

25-08-2016

Women with disabilities are powerful, willing and able. Without taking us into account the SDG goals cannot be fulfilled. Include us for change.

CBM will take part in the 13th AWID international forum held in Brazil from 8-11 September 2016, which will be attended by over 2,000 participants. The Association for Women's Rights in Development (AWID) is a global, feminist membership organisation that has been part of women’s rights movements working to achieve gender equality, sustainable development and women's human rights worldwide.

Background

©Paul Jeffery
during Typhoon Haiyan 12 year old Necabless (right) and her family were linked with mainstream opportunities providing food, shelter and livelihood opportunities.
The AWID forum meets every four years, bringing together around 2000 women's rights leaders, donor agencies, development practitioners, grassroots leaders and activists from around the world.

The theme for the 13th AWID forum is Feminist Futures: Building Collective Power for Rights and Justice. The forum will bring together activists not just from women’s rights and feminist movements but also peace, economic justice, environmental, and human rights movements, among others.

CBM at the AWID Forum

©CBM/argum/Einberger
37 year old Jemimah has a physical impairment since childhood. She took part in a training workshop sponsored by CBM and now works for APDK, a partner of CBM in Mombasa Kenya.
CBM will be attending the AWID Forum to ensure that the issues facing women with disabilities are articulated. It is widely acknowledged that women with disabilities are underrepresented in the both the disability movement and the feminist/gender equality movement. AWID presents a unique opportunity for women with disabilities, their representative organisations and organisations who have included gender and disability in their work to come together to advance a more disability inclusive feminist movement.

Over the 4 days of the event CBM will support a delegation of women with disabilities from Madagascar, Nepal, Peru, Lebanon, Zimbabwe, South Africa and Nigeria led by CBM’s Senior Advisor on Disability and Gender Equality, Mary Keogh. Our delegation will highlight how important gender equality is for women with disabilities and discuss the barriers as well as the opportunities for women with disabilities to be active participants in development.

Furthermore CBM will co-host a panel called “Building the collective power of women with disabilities – shared experiences from Nepal, Peru, Lebanon and East Africa”. At this panel CBM will premier a video with the inputs of many different women with disabilities that has been filmed across a number of regions. 

Maegan Shanks, the Disability Inclusive Development Learning Coordinator will represent CBM on another panel called the Young Feminist Hub where she will highlight the importance of intersectionality.

Alba Gonzalez, EU Policy Officer

©CBM
Alba Gonzalez (left) outside the European Parliament.
''Due to the culture of my country (Spain) but also the lack of policy will and resources, the families of women and girls with disabilities take care of them. Normally the care figures are also women from the family, so they invest their time on taking care of their disabled relatives for no salary and with no support from the Government.''

Why is gender equality important for all people with disabilities

©CBM/Telemans
17 year old Yeny (right) lives in Peru and has a physical disability. she attends a school for children with disabilities twice a week and helps at home with chores.
Gender equality is a central question for all people with disabilities, and not just for women. Addressing and overcoming gender gaps is the most powerful tool to strive for the realisation of rights for all members of society. Women with disabilities often face a multitude of barriers in society preventing them from achieving their full potential and from playing an equal role compared to men with disabilities. Challenging and removing these barriers through advocacy work contributes to a fairer society for all. Women, men, girls and boys with disabilities face challenges tied not only to the discrimination based on disability but also to gender discrimination, thereby adding another layer of barriers.

To know more about the intersection of gender and disability, read this interview of women and men with disabilities from different regions of the world talking about their perspectives on gender equality, what it means for them and why it is important for disability-inclusive development.

Gender equality in the SDGs

©CBM/Hayduk
Ayélé Dosseh listens to speakers at the announcement of CBM's empowerment project for disabled women and mothers with disabled children in Lomé, Togo in March 2012. The project allows women with disabilties and mothers of children with disabilties access mainstream micro finance programmes.
The Sustainable Development Goals and particularly Goal 5 (achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls) has a key role in creating opportunities for women and girls with disabilities to fulfill their full potential. Goal 5 includes a number of targets which are equally relevant to women and girls with disabilities. Read more here.

More reading about gender equality

SDG 5: Gender equality and Disability Inclusive Development in the SDGs

This article gives an overview of some of the key targets of Goal 5 of the SDGs

07-03-2016

Five Perspectives on Gender Equality

We interviewed women and men with disabilities to get their perspectives on gender equality

07-03-2016

International Women's Day 2016

CBM celebrates International Women's Day on March 8

07-03-2016

Intersectionalities of Identities

CBM will soon be attending the 13th AWID international forum in Brazil. We take this opportunity to interview our colleague Maegan Shanks.

31-08-2016

Ada's Story

As a child, Ada was affected by polio, leaving her with mobility restrictions and an introverted demeanor.

31-08-2016

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