Women and girls are too often left behind. Their voices, priorities and needs are rarely considered in policy-making. Yet their contributions to policies are invaluable – policies that address the needs of both women and men are most sustainable and effective. Advocacy can be a powerful tool to get women and girls’ contributions into decision-making circles where they belong.
After 18 years on the job, Women Thrive knows the power that collective advocacy holds for changing the world. Collective advocacy is a key tool for advancing gender equality worldwide.
Collective advocacy is the guiding principal behind Women Thrive’s work because we’ve seen that one woman’s voice can change the lives of many, and that multiple women’s voices can change the lives of millions. Our Alliance brings together more than 200 grassroots gender equality organizations in over 50 countries.
When a diverse group of grassroots advocates from civil society organizations raise their voices together and bring their priorities and solutions directly to those in power, decision-makers are made to listen and act to change policy.
GENDER EQUALITY BY 2030
We are setting our sights on a monumental — but attainable — goal: achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls by 2030.
In 2015, 193 countries agreed to the United Nations’ new global agenda to end poverty, Agenda 2030. This agenda is comprised of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), from ending poverty to combatting climate change. Ultimately, the agenda emphasizes leaving no one behind – creating a world where all people can thrive.
Women Thrive supports grassroots organizations working directly with women and girls in advocacy around implementing SDG 5 on gender equality. Equipped with skills, connections, and resources, Alliance members will track governments’ commitments and actions and hold all stakeholders accountable to achieving gender equality by 2030.
Training more than 100 (and counting) gender equality advocates
Starting in 2014, Women Thrive took its advocacy training model, Raise Your Voice, directly to members. Since then, we’ve worked with over 100 gender equality advocates from 25 countries to help them build the skills, knowledge, and confidence needed to raise their voices and be heard by decision-makers. In intensive, engaging workshops, participants – from Girl Guides in Ghana to young leaders in Senegal to experienced advocates in Kenya – built relationships, developed advocacy messages, and planned activities. Following the workshops, participants put their advocacy planning into action: some took their messages directly to Parliament, others started awareness-raising campaigns in their communities, and others worked together to influence regional and global decision-makers.
Securing Sustainable Development Goal 4
After nearly four years of hard work, Women Thrive and members of our Alliance were thrilled to see the language we’d collectively advocated for included in Sustainable Development Goal 4, which ensures every girl and every boy has the right to quality education and everyone—woman, man, girl, and boy— has life-long access to learning.