This week the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung in its cooperation with the Women’s Affairs Technical Committee implemented one in a series of training programs for female members of local councils. I had the privilege of being present to document the training session as part of my job to disseminate information about the work of the FES and its partners.
The FES and WATC have held many training sessions to encourage broad participation in democracy. Monday’s session took place in Nablus and centered on the theme “Gender Reading of Budgets”. The seminar functioned as a setting to gather council women from various political parties and councils and identify and advocate for women’s issues in the budgets of their constituencies.
Child care and education as well as economic activity and political participation as areas in which local councils could fund programs to support not only female constituents but also the whole of their communities. Guided by a finance expert, the training session was productive in equipping councils with tools for serving women’s interests.
For me, taking part in constructive discourse on how to optimize the benefit of local democratic governance further elucidated what the FES means when it says that it works to increase broad based democratic participation.
Having the seminar in Nablus was meaningful. Nablus has seen its share of violence and councilwomen representing the area face significant poverty and mobility restrictions. Nonetheless, participants with academic, social, professional and family commitments were not only present, but committed and engaged to serving their communities.
Please read more about the WATC on the blog of AP Peace Fellow Tatsiana Hulko who is currently serving with the organization.
Posted By Erin Wroblewski
Posted Jul 18th, 2007