To date the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues (S/GWI) has funded thirteen grants in East Asia and the Pacific for the total amount of $1,004,222. The grants are targeted to local organizations and fund projects that seek to increase the effectiveness of efforts to combat gender-based violence (GBV), women’s knowledge of and application of their civic, legal, political, and economic rights, and their access to justice, rule of law, and social and economic services. These small grants are based on the foundation that political and economic stability cannot be achieved without the full and effective participation of the women and girls and local organizations that make up the backbone of society.
Providing comprehensive response to GBV, projects seek to increase protection of survivors, prosecution of perpetrators, and prevention of future crimes.
Cambodian Ending Acid Violence Research and Advocacy Project, Cambodia (Secretary’s Fund: Avon Award)
The problem of acid violence – the throwing or pouring of acid or other corrosive substances with the intention of maiming, disfiguring, torturing, or killing – has been tragically prevalent in Cambodia for a long time without concrete and appropriate response. This project aims to end acid violence and the culture of impunity surrounding it through fact and evidence based research. Dialogue and advocacy initiatives are undertaken to drive improved access for acid victims and to hold perpetrators accountable.
Empowerment of Teenage Mothers and Victims of Sexual Abuse, Mongolia (Small Grants Initiative)
This project is designed to assist and empower two marginalized groups of young woman and girls: teenage mothers and victims of sexual abuse. This project not only protects and assists those women most in need but also empowers those most likely to have an impact on society, especially talented women in rural areas whose opportunities are limited in comparison with those of their urban counterparts.
Women’s Access to Justice: More Effective Resolutions for GBV, Timor-Leste (Small Grants Initiative)
In Timor-Leste, female victims of violence are denied justice, whether they seek it through the formal legal process or use community or traditional mechanisms. This project monitors the police, judiciary, and prosecutor’s office and it documents to what extent the responsible state institutions are effective in terms of existing laws in handling cases of gender-based violence. The data collected will be compiled for analysis. The program raises public awareness of women’s rights and influences decision makers to strengthen legal mechanisms and implementation to assure women’s rights and access to justice.
Increasing women’s understanding and application of their legal rights
Building Chinese Rural Women’s Capacity to Enhance Political Participation, China (Small Grants Initiative)
This project consists of three activities to enhance political empowerment of women village leaders to ensure that local women have a voice in the political process from advocacy to negotiations about village law. A four-day national forum on grassroots advocacy for 100 female village leaders from all over China was held in the fall of 2010. Representatives from the All China Women’s Federation (ACWF), other government agencies and the media were invited in order to develop strong relationships with these organizations. A follow-up governance workshop for village leaders – both women and men - guarantees further promotion of the inclusion of rural women’s interests in grassroots politics and improves the political environment in which female village leaders operate. The workshop intends to enhance their ability to address community affairs in a more democratic way that includes women as well as men. The project seeks to revise regulations and customary law that hinder women’s access to equal political, economic and cultural rights in 20 villages.
Promoting the Protection of Rural Women’s Land Rights, China (Small Grants Initiative)
This project aims to address issues related to women's land rights at three levels of government: country, city, and provincial. Through initiatives targeted to each level of government, including workshops, gender awareness training, publicity campaigns, and revision of legal provisions, the project promotes the reform of local and provincial rules and regulations regarding land rights for women as well as raises awareness among local women of their rights under the law.
Women’s Access to Justice in Hubei Province, China (Small Grants Initiative)
This project intends to build the capacity of local women in Hubei to participate in court proceedings of local and intermediate courts addressing women’s rights issues around the province. Information on past cases in which local women have already participated is collected, and then key lessons and best practices are synthesized into a training session for the local women. Workshops led by judges and women’s rights practitioners, the publication of a training manual, and “train the trainer” sessions ensure the skills and knowledge gained are widely disseminated.
Increasing women’s access to training, mentorship, credit and finance, and skills building with the goal of increasing their economic independence, their participation in eco-friendly and agriculturally-successful practices, and the creation of women-owned enterprises
Promoting Women’s Leadership in Building Civil Society in Burma, Myanmar (Small Grants Initiative)
This project aims to help women's organizations in Burma build leadership and organizational capacity so that they can increase their participation in the political process as civil society organizations. It establishes women's learning centers and provides vocational training to disadvantaged women in order to increase educational and economic opportunities. Together, these activities create a network of skilled women leaders who can serve as models of economic development and political participation in their communities.
Timorese Women’s Woven Art, Timor-Leste (Small Grants Initiative)
The goal of this project is to provide economic empowerment and support through the skill set of woven art in Timor-Leste. The project builds confidence and skills through training and practical assistance. It encourages the production of quality goods using tais, the traditional cloth that has been made by weaving on simple back strap looms for centuries. It seeks to generate immediate sustainable income opportunities for individuals and collectives of women, offer training to even more women for production and quality control, and provide wholesale and retail outlets within Timor-Leste and overseas. This project not only empowers women to provide a way out of a life of poverty by generating income, but it also builds self-esteem and confidence.
Vocational, Entrepreneurial Land Leadership Training Program for North Korean Refugees, South Korea (Small Grants Initiative)
This project promotes women's political, economic, and social advancement for Northern Korean women who have escaped the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. Through the provision of practical, sustainable training, the program encourages the economic empowerment of Northern Korean female refugees. The project offers employment opportunities, skill-based certifications, leadership, and entrepreneurial training.
Increasing women’s political participation
Advancing and Empowering Women’s Participation through Political Education, Malaysia (Small Grants Initiative)
This project prepares a cadre of young politically informed candidates for political office for the coming general elections in 2012. These women become part of a supportive political network and are therefore better able to negotiate the world of male-dominated political processes. This group of young women receives training and mentoring in order to support and develop their political aspirations, and ensure that they are sound candidates in the elections.
Strengthening Rural Women’s Political Leadership and Advocacy Capacity, Mongolia (Small Grants Initiative)
The goal of this project is to strengthen rural women's leadership and advocacy capacity to ensure stronger, more effective, better coordinated and more self-confident participation of local women in the 2012 parliamentary and local elections as candidates, campaign managers, women's rights advocates and voters. To achieve this goal, the project intends to develop an innovative and participatory training content, methodology and materials in addition to undertaking a series of capacity-building workshops in eight provinces.
Increasing women’s and girls’ access to education
Life Skills Training and Employment Readiness, Vanuatu (Small Grants Initiative)
This project focuses on young women's economic empowerment through the development of young rural women's business development program and promotion of employee's rights and responsibilities. Targeting youth between the ages of 16 and 35, this projects is focused on their access to quality employment, business training, counseling and services.
Women’s Rights and Gender Equality for Women in Rural Areas, Vietnam (Small Grants Initiative)
The main objective of this project to empower rural women in Hau Giang Province and to increase their knowledge about their rights through community education, specifically through a series of “train the trainer” workshops in fifteen project communes. Quarterly discussions with lawyers, psychologists, and sociologists to discuss women’s rights as well as the establishment of a women’s “club” in each commune build community support networks for participants in rural areas with historically limited social services. In addition, the project educates women about their legal rights, as well as the recourses available to them.