WLP participates in a wide range of advocacy and networking activities to raise awareness about women’s human rights issues, influence policy makers and public opinion, and increase the visibility and impact of our work on gender equality. Our grassroots-driven advocacy campaigns are based on our domestic country analyses, and capitalize on our international visibility. We connect activists to networks and movements through our international conferences, and to policy makers, media, and the public through special events. WLP participates in international and regional forums where we share our campaigns and advocacy strategies with activists, journalists, academics, and others. And we engage in education and advocacy at the local level to mobilize communities directly.

The WLP partners are engaged in a number of local, regional, and international campaigns that are addressing the policy, legal, educational, social, and economic inequities that women face. WLP is mobilizing around civil rights for women, coordinating advocacy campaigns for women’s citizenship, nationality rights, and inheritance rights. We are combatting VAW through our campaigns to end honor crimes, marital rape, and child marriage, and through reforming family law. 

Mahnaz Afkhami at Women Deliver on Ending VAW
WLP President/CEO Mahnaz Afkhami discusses strategies for ending VAW at Women Deliver, 2013.

Participation in Global Forums

WLP and our partners participate in dozens of international forums to share our advocacy strategies and campaign experience with new audiences in Asia, Europe, Latin America, the MENA region, and the United States. Our objective is to raise the profile of work being done in the Global South to promote human rights and women’s advancement. In recent years, WLP has screened our documentaries and participated on panels at the World Movement for Democracy, Women Deliver, AWID, the UN Climate Change Conference, and many others.

Traditional and Social Media Outreach

WLP’s media outreach ensures that women’s lives and perspectives inform journalists’ research and the broader public dialogue. We cultivate relationships with supportive media and provide them with access to our grassroots networks. Our partners frequently participate in interviews for online, television, radio, and print media sources, nationally and internationally. In recent years, we also have embraced popular social media to increase awareness, mobilize activists, and influence decision-makers through hashtag# campaigns, as-it-happens Facebook updates, and Twitter teach-ins.

Morocco Soulaliyate Women Protest 2013
A Soulaliyate woman leader rallies a crowd of demonstrators during a protest for women's land rights in Morocco.

Community Advocacy

WLP and our partners have achieved success in changing attitudes, practices, and policies through community advocacy. Our partners have been relentless in bringing attention to issues that impact women, and in promoting solutions to discrimination, violence, and injustice. Through petitioning key decision-makers, organizing rallies and marches, and conducting outreach on television, radio, and in newspapers, our partners have mobilized their communities to address many of the most intractable problems that women face.

Here are just a few of the advocacy victories spearheaded by WLP partners in the last few years:

  • Brazil: Introducing the crime of femicide into the penal code;
  • Jordan: Removing a law from the penal code that allowed rapists to escape punishment by marrying their victim;
  • Lebanon: Improving the legal status of non-Lebanese spouses and children of Lebanese women;
  • Malaysia: Producing films to raise awareness on sexual assault - watch Rape is Rape, No Excuses;
  • Morocco: Halting the passage of a bill to permit child marriage, and reversing reservations to CEDAW in Morocco.
WLP Conference at JHU SAIS 2008
WLP partners discuss transformative leadership at The Politics of Participation symposium, held at the School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University.

Public Events

Each year, WLP hosts dozens of small and large events, including conferences, panel discussions, film screenings, poetry readings, and book launches, to raise awareness and mobilize audiences to become more engaged in human rights and justice campaigns. Our events are frequently in collaboration with other institutions of learning such as the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, and The New School. We regularly take part in international gatherings of activists such as the annual session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women.

In recent years, WLP’s public events have covered a range of issues that touch the everyday lives of millions of women and men. Among them have been programs on human security, gender-based violence, family law, and refugees. We use our public events to promote South-South dialogue among activists from the Global South, and as a forum for bringing their enormously important advocacy work to a wider audience.

At our annual human rights poetry event, Lifelines, leading women poets share their poetry and personal stories of courage, raising awareness about living through violence, war, exile, and other challenges. At our film screenings and panel discussions we facilitate wide-ranging conversations about campaigning for justice and human rights. Our goal is to make all of our events informative and inspiring to new generations of human rights and women’s advocates.