Albanian Women Empowerment Network (AWEN) is composed by eight organizations operating from north to south Albania. It was created in Tirana, in December 2011.
AWEN has a mission to support, protect and promote the rights and interests of women and girls throughout Albania, regardless of political orientation, religion, education level, ethnicity, age, economic situation, sexual orientation, disability and gender identity.
Women in Albania are underrepresented at local decision-making structures. The new Electoral Code introduced a 30% gender quota, but during the last elections on 2011 political parties showed lack of will to achieve this objective. This problem is not only due to political parties, it is also due to socio-economic factors, level of democratic culture of voters in general, and those in rural areas in particular. Persisting stereotypes and traditions or discrimination in terms of access to the decision makings or political life - and “career progression” within one’s chosen profession - are so many obstacles to female participation in the decision-making process. In this view it is a matter of urgency to promote women’s participation in decision making through education campaign, awareness raising and capacity building-trainings.

The project Strengthening women’s participation through education and raising awareness in decision making and political life addresses this need to increase the level of education and awareness in these directions above all because 2013 will be the year of central elections. It is be implemented through the organizing of 8 round tables and 8 informative sessions in eight different districts with community and regional stakeholders. The purpose of the round tables is to share and disseminate information on current situation of women’s participation in political life in the country, chances of women’s’ involvement in political issues. In each of these round tables and informative sessions there will participate 30-35 people’s representatives of political parties in the 8 districts, of women political forums, of the communities, NPOs, media and other civil society representatives. Each of the members of the network will be responsible for the implementation of the round tables. AWEN coordinator and the coordinator of this project are also responsible to organize and attend these activities.



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