Delegation of the European Union to the
UN and other international organisations in Geneva

Enabling civil society to play a greater role in advancing gender equality and women’s rights

20/02/2018 - 09:33

The overall objective of the action is to increase the role of the civil society in advancing women’s rights and to promote economic and social participation of rural women through civil society organizations.

The specific objectives of the action are: to build capacities of the non-governmental organizations to advance the gender equality agenda through human-rights based approach; to strengthen capacities of women activists to better exercise their right to social participation; and to enable vulnerable women to better exercise their economic rights.

 The project is implemented in Sabirabad, Neftchala, Bilasuvar regions and Baku, and focused on: capacity building for NGOs on CEDAW Convention; Capacity building for Women Resources Centre; Legal education of CSOs and local women; Trainings for women in social participation; Trainings for women in entrepreneurial skills; and Support to business start-up for women. Capacity development approach constitutes the principal methodology for the implementation of all activities proposed by the action.

As practiced and promoted by UNDP, an essential ingredient in the capacity development approach is to bring about transformation that is generated and sustained over time from within. The project is funded by the EU and UNDP and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership with the State Committee for Family, Women and Children Affairs and Women Association for Rational Development (WARD).

The project’s duration is March 2015-March2017.


  1. Women Resource Centers established in Bilasuvar and sustained in Sabirabad and Neftchala
  2. Over 450 women have joined WRC’s as active members and established effective networking
  3. 2 Assessments have been conducted by the International experts: Assessment of barriers preventing women’s civic engagement in the target regions and Assessment of employment opportunities/vacancies in the local labour market that could be filled by active women of the target regions. The results were used to develop WRC Action and events plans.
  4. Awareness raising session for NGOs to improve their understanding of CEDAW, training to NGOs on effective advocacy to promote women’s rights and training on monitoring and reporting under CEDAW Convention  have been conducted to enrich their skills and to develop capacity of the civil society organizations – 14 NGO’s and 3 WRC members, total 25 participants
  5. 2 documents - Legal education guide for NGOs on CEDAW Convention and toolkit on monitoring fulfilment of obligations under CEDAW Convention and guidelines on preparing alternative CEDAW report, have been developed
  6. 2 events have been conducted during the past period - Awareness raising campaign among local communities about women’s contribution to community development and Azerbaijan’s tradition of women’s social activism in Bilasuvar -60 participants and Networking among women activists from the three target regions through 3 face-to-face meetings and social media platforms in Sabirabad -40 participants
  7. 28 business have been established in Bilasuvar and Sabirabad. 15 women in addition to the owners have been employed within started businesses. Direct beneficiaries 43 and indirect beneficiaries (families) 220.
  8. Over 500 women have benefitted from the capacity building activities conducted during the project life time: Business development trainings -56  , Financial Literacy and Family Budget –planning -43, Accounting Courses(33), Computer Courses -67, CV Development, Presentation Skills and Effective Communication -57, Organizational Development -107, NGO Establishment and Management -14, Training on Strengthening Women Social Participation in Rural Areas -56. Over 500 children, youth and community members have joined awareness raising events within 16 days of activism on Violence against Women.
  9.  Study Tour to Germany has been organized for WRC leaders and active members. In order to give a comprehensive view of the best practices to WRC members it was initially agreed to show women variety of organizations relevant to their present and future work such as newly started small organization in order to learn experience and strategy of an organization similar to WRCs; and also an experienced, well developed organization to provide a good vision to the future. Furthermore it was planned to visit a network organization, to show the essence of joint work between organizations; a donor organization in order to understand priorities and requirements of donors, and also a government body that cooperates with local NGOs/CBOs to show the importance of the relations between government bodies and community based organizations and any other organizations and individuals that might be of interest to rural women and their work in respective spheres. Particular interest was given to the experiences of organizations and institutions in Germany on CEDAW convention.
  10.  By the end of December, Neftchala WRC was registered at the Ministry of Justice as “Support to Social Development of women in Neftchala” non-governmental public union and obtained its legal status. Registration of the WRC in Sabirabad and Bilasuvar is currently at the Ministry of Justice under revision. On April 27, NGO in Neftchala has been granted 3000AZN for the project under NGO Council call for proposal in the theme “Motivation and encouragement of the population and soldiers at the frontline territory -Tartar’. The project implementation was very successful and received positive feedback from the community members in TARTAR and local authorities.
  11. Job Fair has been organized in Bilasuvar, over 60 women have participated at the event, and 11 companies with the 22 job vacancies. As an outcome, 3 members of the WRC and 1 person from the public have received an official job offer and started their work as of today, 8 persons are on a waiting list.
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