Women’s pilgrimage of justice and peace – a landmark UN resolution,
Bossey, 16-22 August 2015
This training workshop provides a space for interactive learning and dialogue on how women of different faith traditions can access and use existing tools of gender justice in conflict resolution and peace building. The United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 (UNSCR1325) is an example of such a tool which – when accessible – can empower women to contribute their perspectives and raise their concerns as part of conflict resolution and peace building efforts.
Together with the successful 2014 continuing formation on UNSCR1325, the training workshop contributes to the Pilgrimage of Justice and Peace. It deepens the interactive and empowering process which comes at a time when the churches globally still struggle with the task how to bring dimensions of social injustices that impact women more than men, like sexual violence, to be part of the global justice and peace agenda. Such violations of the dignity and bodily integrity of women are to be named as sin against God and a crime against humanity.
The Korean Council for Women Drafted for Military Sexual Slavery by Japan keeps on reminding the churches of the need to urgently work for justice for the survivors of sexual and other gender based injustices suffered under the Japanese military during the Second World War, who are known as the ‘comfort’ women. How can such violations of human dignity, which are usually silenced by the moral mask of condemnation and shame, be broken and mainstreamed into the global justice and peace agenda?
The UNSCR1325 helps to give a voice to address these forms of violence, invites the sharing of stories and opens ways for dialogue and action. Yet a question that needs to be raised is whether such existing instruments are accessible to women of faith whose involvement in conflict resolution, peace building and responses to sexual and gender based violence are being carried out within their religious context. The measure of accessibility considers the language they are crafted in, the processes they suggest as well as methodologies used. How do women whose ethical choices are often guided by moral principles that are based on a relationship with a Divine Being access such gender justice tools? What role can Sacred Texts play in the process of translating the language of such tools into a religious friendly one fitting these women’s contexts?
The workshop aims at making the UNSCR1325 accessible to women of faith so as to build their capacity in advocacy and awareness building on issues that affect them. Hopefully this can lead to having the women who complete such a training workshop to be part of the decision making processes for conflict resolution and peace building.
Through creative facilitation of scholarly and analytical trainers and mentors, using methods of interactive presentation, narrative, small group discussions, analytical conversation and reflections on Sacred Texts, this workshop will unpack the UNSCR1325 into the four major pillars of: Prevention, Protection, Participation, Relief and Recovery and bring these into a language that this group of women can use to advocate for their own active agency in conflict resolution and peace building.
The workshop is designed to be an intergenerational interactive learning experience with the aim to make UNSCR1325 accessible to women of faith and build their capacity in advocacy tools for issues that affect them.
The workshop will be of particular relevance for church officer responsible for gender, justice and peace, for staff of church-based organisations and specialised ministries, as well as for members of women’s action groups, networks and educational institutions. It is led and facilitated by Dr. Fulata Mbano Moyo with the WCC women’s network.