Make Mothers Matter, together with the city of Ypres, and its grass roots partners Mothers for Peace, Mama Kivu and the Vrouwenraad, is organizing an international peace Conference Women at the Peace Table, which will take place on June 17, 2023 in the city of Ypres, Belgium.
Ambassador Anwarul K. Chowdhury, Former Under-Secretary-General and High Representative of the United Nations and initiator of the UNSCR 1325 as the President of the UN Security Council, will address the Conference. In his opening message recorded exclusively for the event, he tells MMM: “the key focus of 1325 is that women – equal half of humanity – bring a new breadth, quality and balance of vision to our common effort to move away from the cult of war towards the culture of peace”.
The aim of the event is to emphasize the importance of promoting peace not just through participation in power structures, by political leaders, but also by grassroots organizations. And it will further highlight the critical need for women to be active, present and heard at all levels.
Around the world, women are at the frontline preventing and resolving armed conflicts, protecting natural resources and developing sustainable solutions. They are often pioneers: they work on the ground, sometimes in the political arena, to find solutions to these conflicts.
But women’s force for peace is yet to receive the support and recognition it deserves. Today, women are rarely given a full and participatory place at the negotiating table. Nor do they have access to the resources they need to develop their projects for sustainable peace. An equal voice for women and men in decision-making and equal access to resources is a prerequisite for giving peace a better chance.
Join us in person at the Perron in Ypres to hear from women who have sat at the peace table, such as Dr Sima Samar from Afghanistan and Annie Matundu Mbambi from Congo.
And also hear from women in the Israeli-Palestinian organisation ‘The Parents Circle’ and women in the Russian and Ukrainian peace movements.
We will also tackle the important topic of ‘fighting for climate’ to prevent armed conflict and avoid violations of women’s rights. Our guest, Reem Alsalem, UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women and girls, will explain why this is the struggle of yesterday, today and tomorrow. She will have a conversation with Rangita de Silva de Alwis from the CEDAW committee and members of the Belgian Youth for Climate organization.
The conference will also address change through actions on the ground. Participants will be able to build on the day’s reflections and take part in one of several workshops: peace walk, women’s empowerment in India, in-depth dialogue on the DRC, documentary for the love of peace, non-violent communication and Dabka dance.
We will conclude the day with the presentation and signature of our ‘Peace Declaration’ by the local authorities and all participants, a concrete commitment to peace and sustainable development.
➔ To attend, please fill out the registration form here.
➔ Participation in the event is free but we are asking you to contribute to Lunch and Coffee breaks expenses with a donation of 15€. This can be done either
‼︎ Please do not forget to indicate as a message/reference: ‘Ypres Conference 2023 + your name’.
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