New Internationalist

Action

Issue 270

ACTION

The media might like to think the women’s movement no longer has a role –
but a host of diverse organizations worldwide give that the lie.

from Below is a list of campaigning organizations.
Local women’s groups – such as women against pornography, rape-crisis centres, women against violence and mediawatch groups should be listed in your telephone directory. Non-governmental organizations may also have women’s officers or gender sections.

INTERNATIONAL
DAWN (Development Alternatives with Women for a New Era) - www.dawn.org.fj - is a Third World feminist network which looks at the cultural and economic factors related to women’s participation in the development process. Today, DAWN has a network of some 4,500 researchers, activists and policy-makers and produces newsletters and publications. The DAWN Secretariat is based at the Women and Development Unit (WAND), University of the West Indies, School of Continuing Studies, Pinelands, St Michael, Barbados. Tel: (809) 426-9288 Fax: (809) 426-3006.

ISIS was created in 1974 as a channel of information and communication between women. There are documentation centres and two bases which produce material in Spanish and English.
Spanish: Casilla 2067, Correo Central, Santiago, Chile.
Fax: (562) 638 31 42. E-mail: isis@reuna.cl Web: www.isis.cl.
English: PO Box 1837, Quezon City Main, Quezon City 1100, Philippines
Tel: (632) 435 3405. E-mail: admin@isiswomen.org Web: www.isiswomen.org

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) has branches and campaigns in most countries. Their central offices are at: 1 rue de Varembe, 1211 Geneva 20, Switzerland.
Tel: (22) 919 7080. Fax: (22) 919 7081. Email: wilpf@iprolink.ch Web: www.wilpf.int.ch

Women in Development Europe (WIDE)
Working to influence European and international policies and to raise awareness on gender and development issues.
Rue de la Science 10, 1000 Brussels, Belgium . Tel: (32 2) 545 9070. Fax: (32 2) 512 7342
E-mail: info@wide-network.org. Web: http://www.eurosur.org/wide

 

The United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women Aotearoa/New Zealand
National Council of Women of New Zealand (Inc)/Te Kaunihera Wahine o Aotearoa,
PO Box 12 -117, 10 Park St, Wellington.
Tel: (04) 473 7623, Fax (04) 499 5554.
Email: contactus@ncwnz.co.nz Web: www.ncwnz.co.nz
With 38 branches throughout the country, the Council functions to serve women, the family and the community through discussion and action.

Women’s Health Action,
PO Box 9947, Newmarket, Auckland.
Tel (09) 520 5295. Fax (09) 520 5731.
Email: info@womens-health.org.nz Web: www.womens-health.org.nz
Women’s health advocacy group which provides information services for women and lobbies for health services to meet women’s needs.

Maori Women’s Welfare League,
PO Box 12-072, Wellington.
Tel: (04) 473 6451. Fax: (04) 499 6802. Email: jacqui@mwwl.org.nz
With over 200 branches nationally and several branches overseas, the League aims to empower and improve the well-being of Maori women and their families..

Women’s Electoral Lobby,
PO Box 11285, Wellington.
Tel: (04) 562 8992.
Aims to get women into areas of public decision-making.

Affirmative Action,
PO Box 12361 Wellington.
Tel: (04) 475 7818. Fax (04) 475 3552.
Promotes equal opportunity for women, particularly in the area of employment.

 

Graphic by Sophie for the 'Testimony of women'. Australia
Association of Non-English Speaking Background Women of Australia,
GPO Box 261, Hall ACT 2618 .
Tel: (02) 6241 1663. Fax: (02) 6253 9004.
Email: respall-turner@bigpond.com
Represents NESB women across all cultures in Australia. It acts as a lobby group, promotes participation of women in all aspects of work and society, and works toward the elimination of sexism and racism.

Ministry for the Status and Advancement of Women,
Level 11, 100 William Street, Woolloomooloo, NSW 2011.
Tel: (02) 334-1160.
Aims to improve the status of women in government, the commercial sector and other workplaces, undertake and provide research, consultation and education and promote service provision.

Women’s Electoral Lobby,
44 Albion Street, Surry Hills, 2007, NSW.
Tel: (02) 212-4374. Fax: (02) 9281 7492. Email: wel@wel.org.au Web: www.wel.org.au
A women’s political lobby which identifies sexism in society, exposes it and lobbies against it.

 

Britain
Change,
PO Box 824, London SE24 9JS.
Tel/fax: (0171) 277-6187.
Aims to educate and alert public opinion to the inequalities are imposed upon women through law, practice and custom by disseminating information; also to campaign, lobby and train around women’s issues.

National Women’s Network,
11 Goodwin St., London N4 3HQ.
Tel: (0171) 263-7553.
Aims to inform and mobilize women in Britain around international issues as they affect women in both South and North. Facilitates information exchange between groups and individuals, and campaigns for greater gender fairness.

Womankind (Worldwide),
32-37, Cowper Street, London, EC2A 4AW .
Tel: (020) 7549 5700. Email: info@womankind.org.uk Web: www.womankind.org.uk
Supports women’s groups and organizations in developing countries.

Women Against Fundamentalisms,
129 Seven Sisters Road, London N7 7QG.
Tel: (0171) 272-6563. Web: waf.gn.apc.org
Committed to networking, challenging and organizing against manifestations of fundamentalism in all religions and to disseminate information about fundamentalist activities affecting women.

Women’s Environmental Network,
PO Box 30626 London E1 1TZ .
Tel: (020) 7481 9004. Fax: (020) 7481 9144. Email: info@wen.org.uk. Web: www.wen.org.uk.
Informs, educates and empowers women who care about the environment. Current campaigns include forest and paper, air pollution, the glamour industry and sanitary protection.

 

[image, unknown] CANADA
MATCH International Centre,
200 Elgin Street, Ste 1102, Ottawa, ON, K2P 1L5.
Tel: (613) 238 1312. Fax: (613) 238 6867. Email: matchint@web.ca Web: www.web.net/~matchint/
A small feminist agency which supports and funds women’s projects in the Third World. Also does public education work. Key areas of interest are violence against women, leadership training and community organization.

National Action Committee on the Status of Women (NAC),
234 Eglinton Ave E, Ste 203, Toronto, ON, M4P 1K5.
Tel: (416) 932 1718. Fax: (416) 932 0064. Email: nac@web.net Web: www.nac-cca.ca
National women’s organization with hundreds of regional member groups. Focus on major policy areas including economic justice, reproductive technologies, health and immigration.

Women in the Americas,
Oxfam Canada,
880 Wellington Street, Suite 400, Ottawa, Ontario K1R 6K7 .
Tel: (613) 237-5236. Fax: (613) 237-0524. Email: enquire@oxfam.ca Web: http://www.oxfam.ca/
A new initiative to build links between women’s groups in Canada and the South especially around the impact of economic restructuring on women’s lives.

 

[image, unknown] UNITED STATES
The Global Fund for Women,
1375 Sutter Street, Suite 400, San Francisco, CA 94109
Tel: (415) 202-7640. Fax: (415) 202-8604. Email: gfw@globalfundforwomen.org Web: www.globalfundforwomen.org
Funds small-scale Third World women’s projects with the goal of empowering women to change their lives and their communities. Focus on women’s rights and economic autonomy.

National Organization of Women,
1000 16th St NW, Ste 700, Washington DC 20036.
Tel: (202) 331-0066. Fax: (202) 785-8576. Web: www.now.org
National women’s organization with 500 chapters and 250,000 members across the US. Campaigns and lobbies on major women’s issues including equal rights, abortion and violence against women.

Third Wave,
511 W 25th St. Suite 301, New York, NY 10001
Tel: (212) 675-0700. Fax: (212) 255-6653. E-mail: info@thirdwavefoundation.org  Web: www.thirdwavefoundation.org
A member-driven, national non-profit organization devoted to young feminist activism for social change.

Women’s Environment and Development Organization (WEDO),
355 Lexington Avenue, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10017-6603, U.S.A.
Tel: (212) 973-0325. Fax: (212) 973-0335. E-mail: wedo@wedo.org. Web: www.wedo.org/
Works to put women’s issues on the UN agenda. Also supports development of an international network of women activists concerned with environment, development and social justice.

There are many campaigns leading up to the conference in Beijing. Below are a few that will continue beyond September...

180 Days, 180 Ways. 180 Days, 180 Ways is a campaign leading up to the Conference which aims to involve all the millions of people who are not going to Beijing in activities to support the goals of the Platform of Action. It is being organized by WEDO (see under United States) and includes 180 ways of taking action, from switching household responsibilities for at least one day to promoting ‘sustainable lives and attainable dreams’.

On 9 September National Women’s Network in Britain are inviting women to speak or just join in their Testimony of Women day which will highlight the real needs and rights of women in the light of the Beijing Conference. This will be followed up by regional events.

 

DIARY 1995/6
30 August – 8 September: NGO Forum on Women in Beijing ‘Looking at the World through Women’s Eyes’. Where 30,000 – 40,000 women will gather to debate, decide and party. The biggest women’s event ever.

4-15 September: Fourth World Conference on Women for Equality Development and Peace. The official governmental conference. Watch out for: manoeuvres to go back on the language of previous world conferences, particularly the Cairo conference on population.

6 September: Proposed International Day of Action for Women’s Equality (Action all round the world).

8 March 1996: International Women’s Day.


RECOMMENDED READING:
NEW BOOKS ON INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S ISSUES

MOST OF THESE PUBLISHERS ALSO HAVE OTHER MATERIAL ON WOMEN.
Arms to Fight, Arms to Protect: Women Speak Out About Conflict edited by Olivia Bennett, Jo Bexley and Kitty Warnock (Panos 1995). Women speak for themselves about their experiences of conflict – as fighters, mothers and organizers for peace.

A Diplomacy of the Oppressed: New Directions in International Feminism edited by Georgina Ashworth (Zed 1995). A range of contributors show how feminist internationalism has strengthened during the last ten years.

Fundamentalism and Gender edited by John Stratton Hawley (Oxford University Press 1994) Looks in detail at Islam, Hinduism, the New Religions of Japan and American Christianity and reveals just how control over women is central to all fundamentalist agendas.

Half the World, Half a Chance: an Introduction to Gender and Development by Julia Cleves Mosse (Oxfam 1993). Discusses why and how women are disadvantaged by development and gives case-studies of action by women’s organizations in different parts of the world.

Mortgaging Women’s Lives: Feminist Critiques of Structural Adjustment edited by Pamela Sparr (Zed Books 1994). An exploration of the impact of structural adjustment on women in countries ranging from Jamaica to Ghana, Egypt to Sri Lanka.

My Children, My Gold: Meetings with Women of the Fourth World by Debbie Taylor (Virago 1994). Families headed by women now comprise one-quarter of all households in the world. Former NI editor Debbie Taylor gives seven portraits of women in seven different countries.

Private Decision, Public Debate: Women, Reproduction and Population (Panos 1994). Journalists from Africa, Asia and Latin America use interviews with ordinary men and women to discuss a range of reproductive health concerns, from son preference to HIV, unauthorized sterilizations to female genital mutilation.

Reversed Realities: Gender Hierarchies in Development Thought by Naila Kabeer (Verso 1994). Lays bare the deeply-entrenched biases underpinning mainstream development theory and examines alternative frameworks for analyzing gender hierarchies.

Women and Violence: Realities and Responses Worldwide edited by Miranda Davies (Zed Books 1994). Highlights the extent of violence against women, from conflict to domestic violence, but also charts the efforts being made to challenge such violence.

Women and World Development (Zed Books). A series of illustrated books giving the most recent information, debate and action. The series includes the world economic crisis, disability, work and the family.

STATISTICS AND REFERENCE BOOKS
The World’s Women 1995: Trends and Statistics (United Nations Department of Public Information). Available from United Nations Publications in New York and Geneva. Timed to coincide with the Beijing Conference, this substantive report brings together a wealth of much-needed up-to-date statistics on women worldwide.

What women want Women and Politics Worldwide edited by Barbara J Nelson and Najma Chowdhury (Yale University Press 1994). A guide to women’s situations around the world, this weighty tome surveys 43 countries in detail and demonstrates that nowhere do women have political status, access or influence equal to men’s.

What Women Want, 3-4 Albion Place, Galena Road, London W6 OLT. Tel: (0181) 563-8603. Contact Bernadette Vallely. A postcard campaign to find out what women want. Seven million will be distributed in Britain to be collected for the Beijing Conference and will help set an agenda for the women’s movement. The campaign is looking for women’s groups in other countries who would like to formulate similar action.

Thanks to Peggy Antrobus, Georgina Ashworth, Nandini Azad, Rini Banerjee, Jane Connors, Angela Cummins, Jane Esuantsiwa Goldsmith, Georgina Gonzalez, Alison Farrell, Liz Hardwick, Amanda Hazelton, Nadia Hijab, Emma Hooper, Tina Jorgensen, Belinda Lawley, Pauline Muchina, Leba Rubinoff, Pamela Sparr, Jennifer Stokes, Sue Tibballs, Joyce Umbima, Rachel Wareham, Louisa Waugh and Rosina Wiltshire.

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©Copyright: New Internationalist 1995


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