“An equal society where adolescent girls and young women thrive through social, economic, political and environmental transformation and empowerment”.
To provide support to vulnerable adolescent girls and young women ensuring that they are empowered in all spheres of life.
- To capacitate adolescent girls and young women in all spheres of life.
- To provide safe spaces for girl and young women to assert their rights in the home, school and community.
- To promote civic education for girls and young women participation in community development processes.
- To facilitate for and support AGYW livelihoods.
Region we work in: Chitungwiza and Mashonaland East
Beneficiaries: Adolescent girls and young women (AGYW)
Girls and Women Empowerment Network Trust is a community based organization established in 2015 seeking to support vulnerable adolescent girls and young women ensuring that they are empowered in all spheres of life in ways that enables peace, health, access to resources and spaces that advance their social and economic wellbeing. GWEN puts emphasis on breaking down barriers faced by AGYW working to remove bias and ensuring that women and girls are engaged citizens and leaders across all industries and sectors. The organization has made strides in advancing the rights of adolescent girls and young women through capacity building and imparting knowledge to AGYW in Mashonaland East and Chitungwiza. The organization has been working towards advancing AGYW Sexual Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR). Alarmed by the increased rates of drug abuse among young people in Zimbabwe, GWEN has also been working towards raising awareness on the negative effects of drug and substance abuse, sexual gender-based violence and promoting civic education in communities. Through these initiatives, the organization has reached more than 3000 young people through roadshows, community cinemas, community dialogues and providing psychosocial support to victims. GWEN envisions a Zimbabwe where girls and young women have access to resources and opportunities for personal and professional development without fear or discrimination and are free to express themselves in public and private spheres.
GWEN has also been working with AGYW to build their agents to advocate for and speak on own issues in the community. In the past 5 years the organization has reached more than 5000 girls and young women including persons living with disabilities with information and services that empower them in different aspects of life including access to SRHR services, information on contraception, STIs, HIV and pregnancy. In this process, the organization has empowered AGYW with information that is necessary to resist negative peer pressure and access to relevant services. On the other hand, appreciating that gender equality can only be achieved if we include men as part of the solutions. The organization conducted a ‘HeForShe’ campaign. The campaign sought to include men in bringing in solutions hindering the achievement of SGD 5 calling on men to support women into leadership positions and working towards a SGBV free society.
GWEN is invested in ending all forms of violence including but not limited to sexual gender based violence (SGBV), honor violence, emotional violence, domestic violence, economic and sexual exploitation of women and girls and physical violence. GWEN provides and facilitates for safe platforms for community dialogues to empower communities with knowledge on safeguarding laws/policies, places of safety and responsive pathways available for survivors of violence. Apart from that, Gwen also provides socio-psycho support to survivors and victims of gender-based violence and assists them to cope after traumatic events. For positive impact in the society, GWEN partners with relevant ministries and departments which are the Victim Friendly Unit, Ministry of Youth Sport, Arts and Recreation and Ministry of Women Affairs, Community, Small and Medium Enterprises as they coordinated work to end SGBV and empower young people. GWEN also assist young women with income generation projects towards promoting sustainable development goals one and two by providing access to sustainable income generating projects including training young women on detergent making, rabbit farming, poultry and other skills training. To date more than 500 young women have been trained in Seke and Chitungwiza.
GWEN has been working towards empowering adolescent girls and young women (AGWY) with civic education. The organization considers education to be a key factor in empowering women and it strongly believes that education improves women development in areas around economic and health outcomes as well as reducing the likelihoods of women and girls being victims of SGBV. GWEN puts emphasis on breaking down barriers faced by AGYW, working to remove bias and ensuring that they are able to become engaged citizens and leaders across all industries and sectors. The organization further works with the community in educating AGYW on the constitution so they can actively participate in key decision-making processes such as budget consultation and amendment bill hearing through constitution hubs. To date the number of AGYW participating in key decision making processes in areas were the organization cover has greatly improved.
As part of raising awareness and capacity building GWEN also conducts community cinemas screening movies and documentaries, which are related to the contextual of communities being targeted. This goes a long way in raising awareness and disseminating information on cases of drug abuse, SRHR, GBV, teenage pregnancies and child marriages. Young people in selected communities are invited to watch a movie and then engage in a dialogue discussing issues relating to the movie. It provides a positive impact on sensitizing the participants, understanding the situations they face as well as visualizing them. To celebrate the International Women’s Day in March 2022 the organization streamed the movie ‘SHAINA’ .Young people through the movie managed to identify biases surrounding justice for AGYW and barriers to their economic independence. Through community cinema, young people identify challenges and cope up with own practical solutions to end sexual exploitation and child marriages. Reaching young people through community cinemas is an effective way of enhancing youth participation in the global fight against SGBV.
Realizing the importance of educating the girl child (SDG4) and alarmed by the number of young girls in Mashonaland East dropping out of school due to financial constraints and early marriages the organization provides support for girls in schools by paying school fees for those who are at the point of dropping out. In Zimbabwe, young girls in rural communities miss at least two days of school per month because they lack access to sanitary wear, understanding the need to promote girls access to SRHR services the organization provides dignity packs to young girls. The dignity pack consisted of reusable pads, washing soap and pants.
- Social Media Platforms: Facebook- Girls and Women Empowerment Network, Twitter- @GWEN Trust, Website: www.gwen.org.zw
- Contact Information: +263 242121, +263 715064521
- Email: email@example.com/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Source: GWEN Trust