What We Do

In partnership with local communities, WCI focuses on areas that are fundamental to women’s equality through building skills that help women become effective agents of change. WCI does this through trainings, workshops and technical assistance in the following areas:

  • Political Leadership
  • Campaign skills
  • Caucus Formation
  • Fundraising
  • Leadership
  • Legislative strengthening
  • Media strategy
  • Negotiation and consensus building
  • Policy drafting and analysis
  • Transparency and accountability
  • Conflict Mitigation
  • Advocacy and Leadership skills
  • Capacity building
  • Consensus building
  • Grassroots organizing
  • Negotiation and conflict mediation
  • Networking
  • Organizational development
  • Economic Empowerment
  • Access to credit
  • Budgeting and money management
  • Business development
  • Financial literacy and numeracy
  • Market access
  • Marketing and sales
  • Networking
  • Savings
  • Strategic business planning
  • Value added agriculture
  • Civic Participation
  • Advocacy
  • Civic education
  • Coalition building
  • Constituency outreach
  • CBO development
  • Leadership
  • Legal Literacy
  • Media and Messaging

Empower Women…Transform Communities

Recognizing that gender is an issue that cuts across all sectors of society, WCI focuses on building the capacity of local leaders to create positive change in four key focus areas:

Political Leadership

The global percentage of women political leaders remains low, restricting opportunities for women to have a say in decisions that affect their lives. WCI increases the number and capacity of women elected officials and policy makers so they can provide leadership, build alliances, and respond effectively to citizens’ interests.

The process of making democracy work for women begins with increasing the number of women in decision-making roles and preparing them to serve as effective representatives. Other critical efforts include training and organizing elected officials, both women and men, to successfully press for gender-sensitive governance reforms and ensure their implementation. To make certain that democracy delivers equally for both genders, WCI works with individual women, as well as groups of elected officials with a commitment to genuine democracy.

In an effort to increase the numbers of women in leadership positions, WCI trains women candidates to conduct successful campaigns. This involves technical assistance to help candidates to develop policy platforms, voter outreach plans, fundraising strategies, and a framework for strategic engagement with the media. Once in office, WCI supports women elected officials and party leaders to effectively represent their constituents by providing supplemental training and workshops in areas such as media and messaging, voter outreach, strategic networking, legislative strengthening, constituency relations, negotiation and consensus building, gender and budget analysis, and caucus building.

WCI has conducted political leadership programs in many countries around the world, including: Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Ethiopia, Haiti, Liberia, Malawi, Romania, Sudan, Tanzania, and Venezuela.

Peace Building and Conflict Mitigation

Women are disproportionately affected by conflict, often systematically targeted through gender-based violence as a weapon of war. WCI provides women with the tools needed to transform communities and foster an environment that sustains peace through grassroots mobilization and community outreach.

During conflicts, women often face devastating forms of sexual violence which are sometimes systematically deployed to meet military or political objectives. After conflict, unwanted pregnancies, trauma, and stigma caused by sexual violence can prevent women from seeking access to important services such as health, education, and financial support, and often presents a barrier to women’s full participation in political and peace-building processes. Despite these seemingly insurmountable challenges, women have been internationally recognized as essential leaders in conflict prevention and sustainable peace-building. Still, they remain largely absent in the formal peace-building structures and processes, and as a result the burdens of conflict unique to women are often overlooked. WCI unites communities in areas of protracted conflict to transform policies and create environments that promote sustainable peace.

WCI works with women civil society leaders and women’s rights organizations to ensure that women are at the table throughout peace-building processes. WCI’s trainings focus on negotiation, consensus-building, organizational development, trauma counseling, and conflict resolution. Through such programs, WCI equips local community leaders to effectively engage in conflict resolution and peace-building, and provides them with the resources needed to implement their new skills.

WCI has conducted peace-building programs in many countries around the world, including: Afghanistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, Iraq, Liberia, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Sudan, and Yemen.

Economic Empowerment: Sustainable
Livelihoods and Entrepreneurship

Women contribute significantly to economic development, yet they continue to lack access to key resources such as land, credit, and training. WCI provides women with the skills and resources needed to become financially independent, to maximize their profits, and to build a sustainable source of income for themselves, their families, and their communities.

Women often lack access to the critical resources and employment opportunities that would ensure their economic success. Although women perform 67% of the world’s work and produce 60% of the world’s food, they earn only 10% of its income and own 1% of its land. Financial security and independence are essential in order for women to fully participate in decision-making processes, both in their homes and in their communities. WCI’s economic empowerment programs support women’s business ventures, building their self-confidence and ability to impact social change.

WCI works with individual women business owners, agricultural collectives and artisan associations to advance their existing income-generating activities. Through training in management, financial literacy, budgeting, marketing, networking, and value-chain analysis, WCI helps emerging women entrepreneurs maximize their profits and build a sustainable source of income for themselves, their families, and their communities.

WCI has conducted Economic Empowerment programs in many countries around the world, including: the Andean Region, Colombia, Ghana, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Liberia, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tanzania, and Uganda.

Civic Participation

The marginalization of women in civic life prevents their needs and interests from being addressed by policymakers. WCI empowers women to hold government accountable by mobilizing their communities and advocating for responsiveness to constituents.

Building a strong civil society is an essential step in the challenge of creating governance and accountability systems that respond to women's needs, and protect their rights. In order for civil society to address the most pressing community issues, all members must have an equal platform to share their voices. Despite this, social, cultural and economic barriers around the world continue to prevent women from fully advocating within and for their communities. Women’s effective civic participation strengthens institutions and empowers women to be agents of change. By working with men and women as equal partners, WCI broadens the civic engagement of all citizens.

WCI works with youth, activists, and civil society organizations to build the skills and capacity of men and women to make government accountable. Training topics include advocacy, leadership, community outreach, grassroots organizing, media and messaging, strategic planning, fundraising, coalition-building, organizational development and government relations. Through these programs, WCI provides community leaders with the tools to advocate for the issues that are important to them and create change at local and national policy levels.

WCI has conducted civic participation programs in many countries around the world, including: Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Ethiopia, Haiti, Iraq, Columbia, Jordan, Kosovo, Kuwait, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Morocco, Namibia, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.