APPROACH AND METHODOLOGY
In the process of planning the Regional Armed Conflict Consultation, Karama has identified four crucial elements which will make the event successful and provide desired strategic outcomes and they include the following:
- Convening a regional group of stakeholders to discuss best practices and lessons learned, and prioritize issues related to armed conflict and its impact on women. This discussion will be aided through case studies presented by Karama partners from Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen who will share practical experience regarding their work in conflict-zones and post-conflict zones, and each will speak to a specific category of impact, including economic, social, health, and political. Academics and experts from regionally-based universities will be engaged in order to develop a mutual methodology that closes the gap between research and activism and results in strategic recommendations that are sustainable in mitigating the impact of war on women.
- Financial support of initiatives within the region that are currently working to promote women's peace, security, and health, as illuminated by new grants awarded by our partner organization, the Arab Women's Fund, will launch its grantmaking for women affected by armed conflict in parallel with Karama's commitment to implementation of SCR 1325. These will also illuminate actionable steps that are successfully being implemented to mitigate the impact of war on women.
- A research study conducted in partnership with local universities in at least three of the conflict areas within which Karama works. The study will detail the consequences of war and its impact on women in each aspect of their daily lives, including economic, political, social, cultural, and health consequences resulting from war, to be translated into strategies for policymaking and implementation of legal and social measures protecting women from violence during war and promoting their leadership opportunities for attaining peace.
Training workshops presented through a women's Middle East institute to build capacity for implementation of international conventions (eg. UN SCR 1325, CEDAW, MDGs, Beijing Platform for Action) for civil society, governments and policymakers.
IMPLEMENTATION, TIMELINE, AND DELIVERABLES
Armed Conflict Concept Note and Invitation - September 2010
Consultation Agenda - Mid-September 2010
Participants List - Invitees finalized in September 2010; participants finalized in October 2010
AWF grantmaking - November 2010-December 2011
Consultation is held - November 2010
Meeting Report - November - December 2010
Study methodology development - November 2010 - August 2011
Launch of country research studies with universities - September 2011 (through 2013)
Followup on 1st Consultation - August-September 2011
Followup on Research Progress - September/October 2012
Women's Middle East Institute on Resolution 1325 - Launch in March 2013
Women continue to be seen as collateral victims or property during times of conflict and subsequently endure aggravated physical, emotional, and economic abuse. Infrastructures throughout the Middle East and North Africa, particularly in conflict-affected areas including Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, are not responsive to women's needs in these times of crisis, fail to protect them from violence and discrimination during war, and neglect their needs post-conflict. While UN SCRs 1325 and 1820 demonstrate a strong commitment to protect women from war crimes and establish a greater role for them in peacemaking and conflict resolution, they remain only words on paper to a great degree. Implementation and enforcement of these mandatory UN resolutions have been largely neglected, and research specific to this issue in the region is not comprehensive in addressing the cross-sectorial impact war has on women nor in linking it to advocacy and policymaking at all levels.
Karama will coordinate collaboration, capacity-building, and research among academics, experts, UN leaders, activists from conflict areas, youth leaders, women representing IDPs and refugees, donors, trainers, and members of the League of Arab States. The focus of these efforts is to create a set of information, actions, and strategies which will ultimately translate the powerful standards set forth by UN SCR 1325 and 1820 into measurable, sustainable impact. Research acquired on the economic, social, political, cultural, and social impacts of war will be used as a launch point not only for advocacy, but also to inform government representatives and policymakers about the situations of women in times of conflict and war. Through country-by-country analysis and research presented by activists and academics, as well as training on the standards set forth by UN SCR 1325 for government representatives and policymakers, Karama will develop a regional methodology and action plan for implementation of laws and policies which promote women's security, safety, and their roles in peacemaking during times of conflict.
Karama plays a convening role at the regional and global level for NGOs, particularly in matters of women's rights, politics, law, peace, security, and violence against women. The types of partnerships Karama can offer are in research and analysis on women, peace and security and violence against women in Arab countries, advocacy training and coordination to lobby in UN venues, and funding of coalitions carrying out joint action plans with Karama partners. Karama also offers best practice information on UN advocacy using CEDAW, the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and the Universal Periodic Review by the Human Rights Council.