African Women Rising, a small nonprofit with big impact, was launched in 2006 in Santa Barbara and Uganda to empower women after War by providing technical skills and support for success via education, agriculture, and microfinance training.
African Women Rising works in partnership with community-based groups to improve the lives of women in post-conflict areas of Africa. Rooted in the conviction that women should be active stakeholders in defining their own development strategies, African Women Rising builds on initiatives that the women themselves have started. Not only do women carry the heaviest post-conflict burden, they are central to the daily work of repairing fractured communities. When women are actively involved in decision-making, be it post-war reconstruction or small-scale civic action, their voices ensure that vital societal priorities are upheld.
The ravages of war and violent conflict devastate communities and the lives of civilians. Women and girls are particularly affected and the road to reconstruction is often much harder for them than it is for men, especially when resources are limited.
For women who were forced to participate in the conflict the return home is often a grim experience. Many return to areas where most, if not all, of the infrastructure has been destroyed; where access to primary health care, education, employment or income-generating activities, or even arable land to farm, is tenuous at best.
Often, stigmatization accompanies them, and their children are at times rejected from the community. As females traditionally bear the burden of caring for young children, the elderly or sick, and for running their households, access to these resources is critical to survival. The full day’s labor it takes to gather firewood, or collect water, or obtain financial or material resources to meet the basic needs of families often precludes their involvement in such activities as attending literacy classes, vocational training, or accessing basic health services.
Read more about how African Women Rising changes lives on our blog.