Women's Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ)

The Women's Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ) is a forum where women meet to engage in collective activism on issues affecting women and girls in Zimbabwe.

The Women's Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ) is a network of women's rights activists and women's organisations with national structures. It is a forum where women meet to engage in collective activism on issues affecting women and girls in Zimbabwe. It has chapters in Bulawayo, Masvingo, Beitbridge, Kariba, Gweru, Gwanda, Bindura, Morendera and Mutare.

Activities

Its central role is to provide a focal point for activism on women's and girl's rights. After the violence unleashed on women in the 2008 elections, WCoZ membership noted that there was a need for the organisation to engage in peacebuilding activities, through engaging with policy makers towards promoting peace in Zimbabwe at local, national, regional, and global levels. The women's organisations also noted that there was a need to strengthen the capacity of women to engage in conflict mediation and conflict resolution at the local level. Thus, the overall objectives of the peacebuilding arm of the Coalition are to build capacities and mobilise women in Zimbabwe to carry out local advocacy and lobbying for peace in their communities; to influence the development of peacebuilding policies and programmes in addressing women's needs; and to reduce the prevalence of violence by increasing women's participation in decision making.

WCoZ also networks with like-minded organisations under the banners of the Peacebuilding Network of Zimbabwe, NANGO, IDAZIM, GenderLinks, as well as academic institutions and NGOs in an effort to develop alternatives to the current political environment. This is done through engagement and influencing policies and laws that protect vulnerable groups including women. The organisation uses the UNSCR1325 in its lobbying activities, to ensure that women and girls are protected from all forms of violence, including politically motivated violence.

Besides the peacebuilding programme, members of the Coalition work in other fields including health, legal aid, access to education, skills training, poverty reduction, research and property rights.


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