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Compassion In Kenya

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Compassion CBO

Compassion CBO, was formed to eradicate poverty through education and sustainable development among women living in the slums and rural areas of Kenya and to rehabilitate orphans and vulnerable children.

Survivors In DR Congo

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COFAPRI

COFAPRI is registered in Bukavu in the eastern Democratic Rupublic of Congo The organisation empowers women through encouraging income-generating activities such as the rearing of livestock.

Grassroots News

Safe World Field Partner, work directly with issues such as poverty, health-care, marginalisation, FGM, child marriage, and education.

Asha Leresh

How Asha Survived the Unnecessary Cut

Asha’s luck came when Samuel Siriria Leadismo, the Director of Pastoralist Child Foundation and his team visited her village, creating awareness about female genital mutilation (FGM) and sexual reproductive health....
Handwashing

Washing Hands to Improve Health in Rural DR Congo

COFAPRI organised handwashing sessions for school children and mothers in rural villages, with the aid of educational DVDs kindly supplied by Thare Machi Education. The word has begun to spread as neighbours are now prompting each other to wash their hands.
Safe Spaces

Safe Spaces Crucial for Women's Self-Reliance in Rural DR Congo

Increased security helps women become self-reliant and less financially dependent on their husbands. This improves the situation for the whole family and also means the women are less vulnerable to abuse.
Towards womens empowerment

DR Congo: Men's Inclusion in Women's Empowerment Benefits Everyone

It remains very important within communities for men and boys to be educated regarding the rights of women and girls, including their proper, fair and respectful treatment. When the women and girls become empowered, it is the whole community that benefits.
Margaret from Kiambu Support Group

Nairobi cancer survivor has hope at last

Margaret is among many women Compassion CBO trained in 2015. She has survived breast Cancer 2 times.

New Womens Magazine for Cameroon

The first edition of the Women for a Change Magazine is now available.

News, Interviews and Blogs

Under-reported issues affecting women and children. Exclusive interviews, articles and blogs by Safe World Correspondents and Content Partners

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The Need for Victim Compensation Programmes - Pakistan and Globally

Globally, victim compensation programmes play a significant role in providing assistance to the victims of violence... however, in Pakistan we are lacking any such programme. It is high time to take serious note of the issue and develop a strong referral…
Lizzy and Victoria

Peace, Dialogue & the Ripple Effect: #RISING16 Global Peace Forum

Perhaps the most inspiring session for me came towards the end of the two days and was entitled ‘Bring back our girls – the forgotten victims of conflict’... We heard the CEO of International Alert, Harriet Lamb, and Victoria Nyanjura - who was kidnapped by…
Olutosin 2

Olutosin Adebowale: To America With Love

Once upon a time in my country, Nigeria, there was a ruler who was dreaded by many... We resisted and said No to every oppressive action or word to any weak or voiceless Nigerian... This is the time to stand firm on what has held the world together - Love.
Berlyne Ngwalem Ngwentah

Berlyne Ngwentah: 'The Biggest Cheerleaders of Women are Women'

All the most prominent, biggest community and feminist movements to alleviate the sufferings of women and girls and support women’s involvement in education and leadership have been championed mostly by women...
Jen 9

Promoting Misogyny, Zenophobia, and Bullying... is.... Nasty

I cannot ever vote for anyone who promotes misogyny, racism, Islamophobia, zenophobia, homophobia... It would be a mockery of my life... dishonoring my elders who have endured the many injustices of racial animosity, my friends who've experienced the same...
Women united

Women United for a Better Community in High Andean of Peru

“Women United for a Better Community” is a new group of grassroots women in the Ayacucho Region at the South High Andean of Peru, recently created by Estrategia, a National Grassroots women's organization. The grassroots women require to be heard and get the…

Malala-2Malala Yousaf Zai is also a strong advocate for communication rights and is a keen supporter and promoter of APC’s local Take Back the Tech! Campaign in Pakistan after attending workshops in Swat and Peshawar.

By Nighat Dad for APCNews (Association for Progressive Communications)

Article reproduced here with kind permission of the author

October 2012

LAHORE: An exceedingly sad, insensate and astounded feeling comes to mind while writing this piece about an innocent 14 year-old activist Malala Yousaf Zai shot in Swat, Pakistan earlier today. This young girl who exemplifies active participation in the Take Back the Tech! campaign in Pakistan.
Across the globe, countless women and human rights defenders risk harassment, torture, family kidnapping and even death threats. Women activists keep breaking cultural taboos and make efforts to lead an exemplary life – not only so their own lives can be better, but also to help other women have an independent and inspiring life.

Malala, our young activist was attacked while she was going home from school with other girls in a school van in the country’s northwest, a region of the country that is known for its political unrest. The unknown assailants shot several bullets to her vehicle, injuring her and the other two school girls. Malala received two bullets to the head and neck, and is currently in critical condition in a hospital in Peshawar.

She started receiving death threats soon after her identity went public as the author of the BBC’s Diary of a Pakistani schoolgirl, in which she denounced the atrocities that took place during Taliban rule under the pen name Gul Makai. In March 2012, shortly after Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) announced that she, and another social worker (Shad Beghum) where on the militant’s hit list, she was provided with unarmed security by her school.
Hailing from Mingora Swat, this 14 year-old girl fought to restore peace and promote girls’education in Swat during the stronghold of Taliban in 2008. She was awarded National Peace Award by the former Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gillani for her outstanding and ardent efforts under extremely hostile conditions. She was also bestowed with Sitara-e-Jurrat by the Government of Pakistan acknowledging her courageous services to promote peace. She was the first Pakistani to be nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize by children’s advocacy group Kids Rights Foundation.

Like many other girls, Malala is a victim of the ban imposed by Taliban on girls’ education during their stronghold of Swat in 2008. The teenager kept encouraging her fellow students to continue with their schoolwork despite of militants’ threats before the Pakistan Military launched an operation and flushed out the militants.

The attack on a children rights activist is an unmistakable indication that the Taliban is not a group that is willing to negotiate girls’ education and women’s rights.

It is not the first case of attacking human rights defenders (and particularly women’s rights activists) in Pakistan. The famous Human Rights Commission of Pakistan has been getting such threats for years. The daring lawyer, Asma Jahangir, is also one of the many who keep receiving threats from miscreants. Adding to this, women’s rights defender Farida Afridi was ambushed and shot dead outside her house on 4th July in Hayatabad, in the tribal agency of Khyber.

Be it in Pakistan or Afghanistan, the efforts and contributions of these activists has been under constant attack by the Taliban. The need of the hour is for the international community to force the State to be responsible and take appropriate measures to protect women and children rights defenders in hostile regions. Activists’ spirit will not wear falter from such attacks, but it will surely affect the peace process in the region.

It is the State’s responsibility to take the activists along the road of peace and make policies, programmes in a closer collaboration and consultation with the human rights defenders. They are the ones who are suffering and helping the victims and survivors on the ground. Designing policies in conflict zones will only be successful and bear long term fruits, when governments take women human rights defenders together in the peace process.

Follow Nighat Dad on Twitter: @Nighatdad

 


 

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