FemNews (May-July, 2023)

In this edition, we have collected important information about the meetings and events of the past three months, which are worth getting to know.

On May 2-5, we hosted our partners from the German filia foundation and their group of donors at the Women’s Fund Armenia. The purpose of the visit was to get acquainted with the activities of the WFA, our partners, their work directions, challenges and obstacles, success stories, etc. Summarizing the visit of our colleagues, we can say that we had a very interesting and eventful week, during which we tried to familiarize them as much as possible with our activities and those of our colleagues. The summary of our colleagues’ visit is here.

In May, the winning ideas of the feminist essay contest were revealed. Below you can find brief descriptions of the essays. Full essays coming soon. You can get acquainted with the short descriptions of the essays with this link.

The meeting of funds and their partners from the European Chapter of Prospera in the framework of the project “On the Right Track” initiative took place in the beginning of June in Sofia. WFA was invited by the lead organizations of the project: Calala Women’s Fund and Bulgarian Women’s Fund. Funds and partners exchanged their work and experience of fighting fundamentalism and far right movements in their context. The impact and strategies of fundamentalism, far right and anti-gender movements was discussed. At the end of three days meeting, a panel “The changed we want to see in Europe and in the world: What gives us hope” with donors and members of the European Parliament was organized. WFA’s partners from Socioscope Nvard Margaryan and an investigative journalist from openDemocracy Tatev Hovhannisyan presented their work during the meeting.

In July, WFA took part in the conference Women Deliver 2023 in Kigali, Rwanda. More than 6000 people from around the world participated at the conference, including prominent feminists, Nobel Prize Laureates, peace activists, CEOs of big foundations and even presidents of the countries from the African continent.  WFA participated at several interesting panels devoted to the feminist funding ecosystem organized by the Equality Fund, Global Fund for Women and many other well known organizations. WFA co-founders also took part at the discussions about feminist funding in the times of crisis and feminist funding for the adolescent girls.

In June, we had the experience of using the participatory grant making model, when the authors of ideas presented their ideas in the presence of other participants, they asked each other questions and new ideas. As a result, our colleagues have already launched their feminist mapping research, which we will inform you about later.

During these three months, we had six femtalks and lectures on various topics. Below are links to videos of the four of them:

Below you can see the graphic recording of the “Coffee and Feminism” femtalk:

On June 17, we organized a training on “Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation” for the partners of the Fund. The training was conducted by Zaruhi Aznauryan, a well-known expert in the field of monitoring and evaluation. During the training, participants have learned about the features of MEL, discussed very detailed and specific questions based on their experiences. At the end of the training, we have also shared useful materials and tools for our future planning of MEL practices with the group.

Women’s Fund Armenia, Women’s Fund in Georgia, Ukrainian Women’s Fund, and filia.die frauenstiftung (Germany) commissioned the assessment of institutional and team resilience in their respective organizations, as well as partners. The goal of the assessment was to learn about the readiness to deal with crises of participating four women’s funds and their respective partners, women’s rights organizations in Armenia, Georgia, Germany and Ukraine. The objective of the assessment is to measure the existing needs regarding institutional (i.e., financial, psycho-social, organizational) and team resilience. Partial summary of the research is here.

On July 1 and 2, the retreat of the project “Femstory։ Archive of Feminist Oral Stories” took place. During two full days, the interviewers managed to get to know each other better, share their experiences, have discussions about the literature and, of course, interview each other and share their future expectations from the project.

On July 29, the “Gender, Crises and Uncertainties” workshop was held, which was organized jointly with YSU Center for Gender and Leadership Studies. This workshop tackles the ways in which various vulnerabilities are reinforced in times of multiple crises. The aim of the workshop was to give a space for exchange between members of the academy, of governmental and non-governmental organizations, and of civil society on possible answers to these and other questions. The video of the workshop is here.

A few days ago, our meeting with the participants of the program for women over 40 took place in the Gardens of Silihdar, in Ashtarak. The purpose of the meeting was to introduce them to our co-healing center, to discuss further actions. During the meeting, we also watched a film made by one of the participants of the program about women who survived cancer and spent quality time with each other.

And of course, below you can see the number of grants awarded in the first half of 2023: