Peace begins at home

16.06.19

We are proud to share the story of our UN Intern in Geneva Chiara Dedeken, who has just won an essay contest on the topic of "Enhancing the role of women in peace and security", organized by Leiden University and The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague. Her essay, which explores an often-neglected aspect of the Women Peace and Security agenda i.e. prevention, focuses on the role of mothers - and the imperative of involving fathers - for peace education in the home.

At one’s mother’s (or father’s) knee: strengthening the agency of local women in peace and security

The goal of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) agenda is both to promote peace and to protect and empower women. However, most discourse on WPS has to date focused on meaningful participation in conflict resolution and negotiations, as well as on the protection of women since they are disproportionately affected by conflict and war. While the WPS agenda builds on the argument that including women is necessary for sustainable and lasting peace, the focus of the agenda tends to be around political and economic empowerment while neglecting the aspect of conflict prevention and the addressing of root causes and structural problems that underlie the conflict and/or violence.

Chiara’s essay aims to reconnect with the two essential goals of the WPS agenda by putting forward recommendations that empower local women as well as contribute to peacebuilding, in particular, conflict prevention, and to creating sustainable peace. Arguing that peace begins at home, her essay highlights the importance of peace education, both for children and their parents.

Acknowledging the significant impact of a child’s immediate environment during early childhood development, as well as the unique position that mothers have long after that, the essay proposes to empower local women, and in particular mothers or other female caretakers, through educational programs. Tailored to the context and nature of the conflict or security threats in particular countries, these programs can empower women in contributing to sustainable peace through a role they have taken on long before: as a caregiver.

But the essay also highlights that these educational programs should not be limited to the empowerment of local women or mothers, but should aim to include men as much as possible, in order to prevent further stereotyping and inadvertently putting an additional burden on women.

Read the full essay

Chiara is currently supporting MMM in developing advocacy tools to promote the role of mothers for peace and security, not only at the individual and family level, but also at the community, national and international levels.

 

Most read articles

Afghan faces and voices of courage

21.09.21

August 15th saw the collapse of the Afghan government and a return to power by the Taliban. At MMM, like much of the rest of the world, we were shocked

Lire plus

Unpaid care work is work that our economic system must recognize, invest in and support

19.07.21

UN New York / HLPF - A look back at our side-event to the UN High Level Political Forum

Lire plus

Mothers and Peace – Book launch

21.09.21

On International Day of Peace, we are celebrating the launch of Mères et Paix (Mothers and Peace), a book by our MMM colleague Pauline Ambrogi. Pauline holds a doctorate in

Lire plus
See all the articlesof the category

Latest News on MMM work on mothers and peace

Our member in Romania acts for Ukraine mothers & children

21.06.22

The ongoing conflict and resulting humanitarian crisis in Ukraine has had a devastating impact on the mental and physical health of mothers and their children, on both those who have fled and those who have sta

Read more

Ambassadors of Hope – stories of courage

26.04.22

In March this year Esperas hosted a virtual event to coincide with International Women’s Day 2022. The Peace Lab titled Ambassadors of Hope brought together three remarkable women who have been peace-building

Read more

Care – Key contributor to peace and security

17.03.22

UN Geneva, Human Rights Council - In an oral intervention, MMM reasserted the need to recognize and support the essential yet often unpaid work of caring as an essential pillar of peace and prosperity.

Read more

Time to recognize that a mother’s #UnpaidCareWorkCounts

08.03.22

On this International Women’s Day, we salute the courage of all people living in conflicts and war zones which, in so many parts of the world, are destroying lives. The brutality and devastation they bring ab

Read more

Child-family separation must be prevented

02.12.21

UN Geneva, Human Rights Council – Ahead of the next session’s annual day on the rights of the child, MMM joined a group of Child Rights Connect members to develop a joint position paper on the rights of the

Read more

Women’s Rights & Children’s Rights – developing synergies, minimizing tensions

12.10.21

MMM has contributed to a newly released book on this theme.

Read more