GPPAC Gender experts at Women, Peace and Security Week

On 22-26 October, a delegation of GPPACs gender experts came to New York for the Women, Peace and Security week to advocate for the full implementation of UNSCR 1325 with a particular focus on women's full participation in conflict prevention. Our gender experts shared their local experiences and recommendations for future action from conflict settings to UN policy makers, members of the UN Security Council, civil society partners and media.

The delegation we brought was diverse, consisting of gender experts from South Asia, West Africa, South East Asia, MENA and the Pacific who come from varied professional backgrounds; ranging from peace education, mediation, women's human rights, to non-violence, humanitarian crises, and beyond.

During the week, we co-hosted two side events:

Local Perspectives on Nonviolent Movements and Sustaining Peace: Amplifying voices from the Field, which took place on 22 October. The event, which was in the interactive world café format, was organised in collaboration with the International Peace Institute (IPI), Peace Direct and the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). It centered on amplifying the voices of women and youth working in peacebuilding at a grassroots level. Three members of the GPPAC delegation spoke. During the event, participants discussed how the international community and the UN can support local peacebuilding efforts. Strategies discussed included: amplifying local voices, having peace education in schools, using media and social media to connect to the youth, and having the UN focus on more on policy and supporting local activities.

Fostering inclusion to build resilient societies: How women peacebuilders prevent conflicts and atrocities on the ground, took place on 24 October. We co-hosted the event with the International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung. It focused on the challenges, best practices and opportunities for including women in conflict and atrocity prevention. Of the four panelists, three belonged to our delegation. The event was also facilitated by a GPPAC Gender Expert. Each panelist discussed the theme in relation to their own region and experience. Furthermore, they all addressed the question of what meaningful participation actually is. This latter discussion brought out a general emphasis on the importance of safe spaces.

Since 2010, GPPAC has been bringing a delegation of our networks gender experts to the Women, Peace and Security week, which is always organised in the week of the Open Debate on Women, Peace and Security at UN Security Council. Still, while more and more member states expresses commitment to the full implementation of UNSC Resolution 1325 and consecutive resolutions, as well as meaningful participation and equal representation of women in peace processes, implementation of these commitments continues to be a challenge.