Unique MENA conference

Women and men from all over the Middle East and North Africa are attending a unique event for the MENA region. “Single but not alone”, is the name of the conference taking place in Kurdistan this month focusing on female headed households.

Zienab Al Ghounimi from Center for Women’s Legal Research &Consulting (CWLRC) from Palestine is one of the speakers.  She says, “I am looking forward to attending this important event.  Our organization has been working for female headed households for many years and we are very pleased to see that the issue is now being addressed at a regional level.”

The High Council for Women’s Affairs for the Kurdistan Regional Government is hosting the event together with UN Women Iraq.  It is being held in Erbil towards the end of January.

Frances Guy, Director of UN Women Iraq says, “In Iraq more than one million households are headed by women.  Large numbers of female headed households exist in other parts of the Middle East and are likely to become a growing phenomenon as a result of social unrest and conflict in the region.   One of UN Women’s global objectives is to work to end violence against women and to enhance the role of women in post-conflict negotiations.   One of the tragic results of conflict and strife is an increasing number of female –headed households.  Throughout the world such households are often the most economically deprived and socially and politically marginalized.”

Participants are expected from Syria, Yemen, Jordan, Turkey, Palestine, Algeria, Lebanon, Sudan, Egypt, Libya and Mauritania as well as all over Iraq.  Best practice will be shared from Nepal, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.  The global perspective will be provided by international agencies working for widows such as IOM, UNHCR, WPD and Widows Rights International. SANWED will share their experience of creating a regional network for South Asia.

For further information please contact:

Zarin Hainsworth