Our Vision of a feminist peace

More than 100 years have passed since the establishment of our League in 1915, and still the world is haunted by the spectre of war. We see patriarchy, militarism, and neoliberalism as three inter-related causes that push us all towards more conflict.

It does not have to be this way. The antidote is feminism.

At its core, feminism includes the beliefs that women matter, that equality matters, and that gender is a construct: the product of unequal power structures. When those structures have been changed and patriarchy ended, then we can have real equality and the possibility of sustainable peace: a feminist peace.

Our methods of work include analysis, awareness-raising, advocacy, activism, and building alliances. We build coalitions and partnerships, share knowledge, and convene women from all around the world. We create bridges and spaces for discussion so that women can play their rightful role in decision-making and help shape the responses that affect their lives and communities.

We also support the work of the wider WILPF community through training and resource-sharing. Where necessary, we organise campaigns and nonviolent actions to promote the cause of peace.

Read about our commitment to be an anti-racist movement.

Theory of Change

WILPF Actions

Build the Movement

Leverage Feminist Perspectives on Peace

Redefine Security

Promote Socio-Economic Justice

Work Methods

WILPF uses different analysis methodologies as a tool for better understanding and study the causes of war, and their interconnections.

WILPF uses advocacy as a tool to create concrete changes in practices, policies, laws, norms, programmes and systems for durable peace. Advocacy work focuses on governments and the United Nations to stop violence and work to abolish the causes of war. We also use advocacy with others including non-state actors and civil society.

WILPF creates bridges and forms alliances with communities, organisations and movements.

WILPF bridges and links women’s experiences between local realities and international forums facilitating space for women to speak for themselves and have access to influencing decision-makers.

WILPF creates spaces to bring women together to mobilise and strengthen their collective power.

WILPF supports local and national actions through grants to WILPF National Sections, National Groups and partners.

Melissa Torres

VICE-PRESIDENT

Prior to being elected Vice-President, Melissa Torres was the WILPF US International Board Member from 2015 to 2018. Melissa joined WILPF in 2011 when she was selected as a Delegate to the Commission on the Status of Women as part of the WILPF US’ Practicum in Advocacy Programme at the United Nations, which she later led. She holds a PhD in Social Work and is a professor and Global Health Scholar at Baylor College of Medicine and research lead at BCM Anti-Human Trafficking Program. Of Mexican descent and a native of the US/Mexico border, Melissa is mostly concerned with the protection of displaced Latinxs in the Americas. Her work includes training, research, and service provision with the American Red Cross, the National Human Trafficking Training and Technical Assistance Centre, and refugee resettlement programs in the U.S. Some of her goals as Vice-President are to highlight intersectionality and increase diversity by fostering inclusive spaces for mentorship and leadership. She also contributes to WILPF’s emerging work on the topic of displacement and migration.

Jamila Afghani

VICE-PRESIDENT

Jamila Afghani is the President of WILPF Afghanistan which she started in 2015. She is also an active member and founder of several organisations including the Noor Educational and Capacity Development Organisation (NECDO). Elected in 2018 as South Asia Regional Representative to WILPF’s International Board, WILPF benefits from Jamila’s work experience in education, migration, gender, including gender-based violence and democratic governance in post-conflict and transitional countries.

Sylvie Jacqueline Ndongmo

PRESIDENT

Sylvie Jacqueline NDONGMO is a human rights and peace leader with over 27 years experience including ten within WILPF. She has a multi-disciplinary background with a track record of multiple socio-economic development projects implemented to improve policies, practices and peace-oriented actions. Sylvie is the founder of WILPF Cameroon and was the Section’s president until 2022. She co-coordinated the African Working Group before her election as Africa Representative to WILPF’s International Board in 2018. A teacher by profession and an African Union Trainer in peace support operations, Sylvie has extensive experience advocating for the political and social rights of women in Africa and worldwide.

WILPF Afghanistan

In response to the takeover of Afghanistan by the Taliban and its targeted attacks on civil society members, WILPF Afghanistan issued several statements calling on the international community to stand in solidarity with Afghan people and ensure that their rights be upheld, including access to aid. The Section also published 100 Untold Stories of War and Peace, a compilation of true stories that highlight the effects of war and militarisation on the region. 

IPB Congress Barcelona

WILPF Germany (+Young WILPF network), WILPF Spain and MENA Regional Representative

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Demilitarisation

WILPF uses feminist analysis to argue that militarisation is a counter-productive and ill-conceived response to establishing security in the world. The more society becomes militarised, the more violence and injustice are likely to grow locally and worldwide.

Sixteen states are believed to have supplied weapons to Afghanistan from 2001 to 2020 with the US supplying 74 % of weapons, followed by Russia. Much of this equipment was left behind by the US military and is being used to inflate Taliban’s arsenal. WILPF is calling for better oversight on arms movement, for compensating affected Afghan people and for an end to all militarised systems.

Militarised masculinity

Mobilising men and boys around feminist peace has been one way of deconstructing and redefining masculinities. WILPF shares a feminist analysis on the links between militarism, masculinities, peace and security. We explore opportunities for strengthening activists’ action to build equal partnerships among women and men for gender equality.

WILPF has been working on challenging the prevailing notion of masculinity based on men’s physical and social superiority to, and dominance of, women in Afghanistan. It recognizes that these notions are not representative of all Afghan men, contrary to the publicly prevailing notion.

Feminist peace​

In WILPF’s view, any process towards establishing peace that has not been partly designed by women remains deficient. Beyond bringing perspectives that encapsulate the views of half of the society and unlike the men only designed processes, women’s true and meaningful participation allows the situation to improve.

In Afghanistan, WILPF has been demanding that women occupy the front seats at the negotiating tables. The experience of the past 20 has shown that women’s presence produces more sustainable solutions when they are empowered and enabled to play a role.

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