In the war-torn city of Mosul, Iraq, the scars of conflict run deep. The rise and fall of ISIS left behind a community fractured by violence. ISIS male fighters were killed, captured, or fled, but the women they married, and their children remained. Referred to as “ISIS-associated families”, they are stuck in limbo, without legal status and facing ostracism and isolation.
The challenge of reintegrating these families into society is a daunting task, but the Odessa Organization for Women’s Development (Odessa) – a partner of ICAN and member of WASL- is making significant strides in bridging this divide.
An Association of Liberian Women Peacebuilders Gain Visibility and Legitimacy Resolving Community Disputes
ICAN’s Senior Program Officer, Stacey Schamber, and WASL member and Executive Director of WEDOL, Rosaline Cassell, spoke about the far-reaching impacts of the She Builds Peace campaign in Liberia.
WEDOL launched She Builds Peace with a parade and panel discussion in Margibi County, attracting over 300 participants, including the police and local authorities. The event garnered public recognition for Liberian women peacebuilders and opened dialogue about how they can be supported and protected. On the back of the launch, WEDOL also established a “village savings and loan association” (VSLA) for women peacebuilders. Through the association, the members have taken the lead in resolving community-level conflicts; they are working with local chiefs and gaining visibility and legitimacy for their roles.
ICAN’s Senior Program Officer, Stacey Schamber, and WASL member and President of PCID, Amina Rasul, in conversation about the She Talks Peace podcast, part of the global She Builds Peace campaign.
Marie-Joëlle Zahar has been an ICAN Board Member since 2019. In this interview, she reflects on her early experiences during the war in Lebanon and how they shaped her journey in the world of conflict resolution, peacekeeping, post-conflict reconstruction, and gendered work. Marie-Joëlle shares stories of her time as a Senior Expert on the Standby Team of Mediation Experts at the UNDPPA, what it was like being one of the few women in international mediation spaces, and her advice for the next generation of women peacebuilders and WPS practitioners. Read more to view the full conversation.
“We are not afraid, we are resisting”: A strong message from the Director of Myanmar’s Gender Equality Network
At 8pm every evening since February 1, 2021 hundreds of thousands across Myanmar bang pots and pans to demonstrate their non-violent resistance to the military coup. This symbolic act is part of the Red Ribbon campaign, a nationwide Civil Disobedience Movement. The movement’s message is clear, explains May Sabe Phyu, Director of the Gender Equality Network (GEN) and a member of WASL: “We are not afraid; we are resisting the coup.”
“Women peacebuilders run to the problem when everyone else is running away,” said ICAN’s CEO and Founder, Sanam Naraghi Anderlini. This statement could not be truer of award-winning Cameroonian peacebuilder, Esther Omam. Esther’s career has seen her go from development worker to humanitarian responder to mediator and peacebuilder, in the South-West region of Cameroon.
“I often dream the jasmine returns to Syria to decorate and perfume our streets.”
As the Syrian regime rained barrel bombs on her hometown in Syria, Najlaa and her family were forced to flee to Turkey where she established the first organization led by a Syrian woman to help other women refugees with literacy, economic empowerment, and psychosocial support.
Peace Hero Najlaa El Sheikh speaks to ICAN about her journey, her work, and her dreams.
We spoke to Yemeni peace activist Muna Luqman, co-founder of the Women Solidarity Network and member of the Women’s Alliance for Security Leadership (WASL), about the war in Yemen, its devastating ramifications, and about the strength of Yemeni women in the face of this destruction.
Mira Kusumarini talks to ICAN about C-SAVE’s efforts to alter the lives of returnees and prepare their communities to accept them.
Nancy Yammout speaks to ICAN about Rescue Me’s efforts to rehabilitate and reintegrate prisoners found guilty of terrorism —and how, over nine years, they’ve engaged with some 680 prisoners, and been pivotal in blocking their re-recruitment into terror groups.
Renowned documentary filmmaker Deeya Khan is recognized as a leader in the entertainment industry and on the human rights and peace-building scene. She spoke to us about her work, her vision and what she’s learned about extremism by confronting it face-to-face.
Dr. Fatima Akilu spoke to ICAN’s Aya Nader about how extremism affects women in her country, discussed rehabilitation and reintegration of extremists, and shared what motivates her to keep the fight for peace ignited.
Let’s celebrate the feminist men who fight for women, Rodolfo Domiguez Marquiz courageously fights Femicide with Accountability in Mexico
Mossarat Qadeem and the Tolana Mothers convince a dozen women to stop stitching suicide jackets for extremist groups.
How Hamsatu Allamin Changed Boko Haram to Boko Halal
Ahlem Nasraoui Fights Terrorism in Tunisia with Entrepreneurship
We spoke to Mossarat Qadeem, Executive Director of PAIMAN Trust, about Trump’s threat to cut financial aid from Pakistan, and about her own work.
Faiza Dhocob is Fighting Terror in Somalia in the Face of Destruction