Women in Peacebuilding Network (WIPNET)

Background: The Women in Peacebuilding Program, WIPNET, of the West Africa Network for Peacebuilding, WANEP, was initiated in 2001 with the broad goal to elevate women from their state of obscurity to the fore to enable them play key roles alongside men in building peace. This was based on the realization that ‘gender and peacebuilding’ did not adequately respond to the existing gap between men and women and that men and women cannot attain equal opportunities espoused in the gender equality definition if women are absent from the scene altogether. In the course of regional and national consultations with women groups across West Africa, WIPNET realized that aside from the fact that women are excluded by design or default from peace processes by male establishment, women also suffer from lack of awareness and skills in peace making and also lack the confidence, exposure and opportunity to get involved. Mission: WANEP through WIPNET seeks to increase the number of trained women practitioners in peacebuilding as trainers, researchers, mediators and advocates. Programs: Through community mobilization and other innovative platforms, WIPNET strives to provide a forum for women at the grassroots to amplify their voices on issues of peace and human security. WIPNET promotes mainstreaming gender perspective into peacebuilding and conflict prevention frameworks at community, national and regional level.