Project information

Stronger Women, Stronger Nations

In conflict-affected countries, empowered women are the best hope for breaking cycles of violence, poverty and instability. By equipping the most marginalised women to participate fully in society, and working hand-in-hand with men to advance gender equality, an alternative future is possible.

January 2016 - December 2016

Charity information

Women for Women International UK

Women for Women International UK logo
  • Need


    2015 has seen high levels of armed conflict, terrorism and displacement across the world. Already sidelined, the poorest women are the hardest hit by insecurity and the breakdown of healthcare, education, and other critical means for improving lives. After losing families and homes, often facing the ordeals of sexual violence and abuse, women are the ones bringing up children and holding families together - they hold the future in their hands, yet have next to no resources or support to rebuild.


    We equip the most socially-excluded women with the tools to rebuild their lives and their communities. Our yearlong training programme aims to build self-reliance & confidence in all areas of women’s lives: health and wellbeing, economic stability, family and community participation, and building social networks. With access to knowledge, skills and resources, women bring income and jobs to communities, improve family and child health, and contribute to sustainable peacebuilding and development.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Empower 75 women survivors of war to build self-reliance, through a yearlong holistic programme


    » Equip women to earn & save money. With a vocational skill, business basics, and access to markets, women can better support their families.
    » Build women's practical knowledge of health & wellbeing, including hygiene, nutrition & maternal health- essential for them & their children to thrive
    » Teach women about their rights and how to protect & advance their interests- so they can influence key decisions in their home & community
    » Connect marginalised women to networks for economic, social & emotional support. Together, women build businesses, share skills & advocate for change

    After 1 year, women report dramatic changes, including threefold growth in daily income, increased saving, family planning & good nutrition, & participation in decision-making.

    Aim 2

    Run our Men's Engagement Programme for 40 men, to create vital allies in women's empowerment


    » Build men's understanding of women's economic, legal & human rights, and how their equal participation benefits whole communities.
    » Develop men's awareness of the social & psychological impact of gender-based violence, and how men can take action to prevent it

    Men involve their wives in family decision-making & support their economic activities. Women report reduced domestic violence and greater control over their property & savings.

  • Impact


    Women invest the benefits they earn – including an estimated 90% of income – transforming their families’ futures and children’s life chances. This powerful ripple effect strengthens the fabric of fractured societies. We survey women one year and two years after graduation and measure social impact on the community, as well as financial and material gains. Survey data show the above successes are sustained and shared with others in the community – every woman we reach will impact 5 others.


    Political insecurity & militarisation in the conflict-affected areas we work pose unavoidable risks, but we work to ensure the safety of all staff & participants and the sustainability & effectiveness of our field operations. We closely monitor security situations on a day-to-day basis, and have safety procedures in place. When establishing programmes, WfWI conduct community outreach to build mutual trust and cooperation, we employ local staff to conduct trainings, and work with local partners.


    Donors will receive a year-end update sharing the impact of the programme. They will be kept up to date on our ongoing activities, events & campaigns via a monthly e-newsletter. Donors giving over £289 can register as a sponsor, be matched with a woman in the programme & write letters to her.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £58,760

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      Amount Heading Description
      £48,600 Life skills training Funds 3 classes of 25 women in our year-long core programme (£16,200 per class)
      £10,160 Men's Engagement Programme Funds MEP for 40 men in communities where we work (£254 per participant)
  • Background


    Women for Women International currently work in eight conflict-affected countries worldwide: Afghanistan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Kosovo, Nigeria, Rwanda and South Sudan. Since November 2014 WfWI has piloted a new project to support Syrian women refugees in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.


    WfWI targets the most socially-excluded women, including widows and single heads of households. At enrolment, over 50% of women in our programmes globally have never completed primary education and are illiterate, and 95% earn less than $1.25 per day. Less than 1 in 10 know their rights, and less than a third report knowledge of good nutrition. By targeting the poorest and most marginalised women, we ensure the movement toward stability is rooted at the lowest socio-economic levels of society.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    For over 20 years, we have directly served over 420,000 women worldwide. We specifically focus on conflict-affected environments, and target the poorest and most deeply marginalised women, who are disproportionately and uniquely affected by conflict, and the poverty and social upheaval that comes with it. Our approach is led by women’s holistic needs and potential, looking beyond emergency aid and towards the long-term rebuilding and development of communities, through women themselves.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Brita Fernandez Schmidt

    Executive Director, Women for Women International UK

    Ngozi Eze

    Serves as the Country Director for WfWI in Nigeria, managing programmes that have served more than 50,000 women since 2000.

    Mohammed Shafiq

    Manages WfWI’s activities in Afghanistan, including delivering our Men's Engagement Programme with over 700 men participants to date.

“Empowered women are the best hope for sustainable development following conflict… the best drivers of growth, the best hope for reconciliation”

Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General