Women Unlimited Eswatini Director, Vimbai Kapurura, is amongst over 150 women from civil society organisations across the globe who drafted the Berlin Declaration 2023 that that calls for the investment into women in the frontline as peace builders, humanitarian responders and human rights defenders.
This was after the UN Women’s Peace and Humanitarian Fund (WPHF) and the German Federal Foreign Office hosted the conference on May 23 and 25 in Berlin. Known as the Global Women’s Forum for Peace and Humanitarian Action, the women were sensitized and encouraged about the role they can play in ending conflicts around the world. This was the second meeting in two years for the WPHF, with the first being for local women peace-builders and humanitarian activists from across the globe held in Vienna.
In 2022 Women Unlimited Implemented a peace -building project training over 50 women led organisations on a number of topics but not limited to how women can take the lead in conflict resolution, mediation, and peace building.In her remarks, Dr Olivia Simelane of the African Women’s Peace and Development Fund, Eswatini Chapter said peace was necessary for development and growing the economy.
The Berlin Conference’s objective was to sensitise and encourage women about how they can contribute in the the formal and informal peace negotiations as well as in the prevention of violent conflicts. Women Unlimited Executive Director, Kapurura said the meeting was able to trudge on activities that women can do in order to be peace brokers.
“The reality is that all countries are going through their fair share of problems, therefore there is the need to mobilise more women as peace makers. women have many spaces to fill in order to be visible” said Kapurura. The Director went on to state that there were challenges in women being visible in peace-building, adding that they were not seen as peacemakers in electoral processes and in peace building.She also added that although some women were in decision making positions, the numbers were still low, noting that with the lack of mentorship programmes most women with leadership capabilities were not capacitated to take part in those spaces.
“We do not want women to just have a seat in decision making processes but we want resourced women who are capacitated, strategic and women who know what they want to the extent that they would go to a seat and voice out on issues and bring solutions to problems” she said. Kapurura also said women in leadership positions should leave a trail that would motivate younger women to carry over.