KWN held its regular members’ meeting
10.11.2017

 On 6 November 2017, at Hotel Sirius, the regular bimonthly meeting of Kosovo Women’s Network (KWN) members was held, attended by representatives of KWN member organizations, members of the Lobby for Gender Equality in Kosovo, and representatives of the institutions of the Republic of Kosovo.

            Igballe Rogova, KWN Executive Director opened the meeting by welcoming the participants. She noted that last week marked the 17th anniversary of the adoption of United Nations Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 on Women, Peace and Security, Resolution that obliged institutions to contact and consult women, who until then were not consulted for anything. Now even official delegations when they come to visit, besides the governors, they also meet representatives of women's organizations.
Mrs. Rogova mentioned the finally approved budget by the Government for the survivors of sexual violence during the war, even though the process lasted long. The process for these women to apply to benefit compensation can be done in 3 ways: online, through organizations working with these women and through the Secretariat. “Now, it is not our job as organizations to put pressure on these women to apply; we just have to share with them the information about the application process, but it remains for them to decide whether they want to apply or not” stated mrs. Rogova. Meanwhile, KWN is lobbying for donors to continue support for these women, as is the UN Women supported project recently, with grants for their economic empowerment. Among others, se shared a very touching solidarity example between survivors of sexual violence, when they have decided to share honey beehives with the ones more in need. The Network, but also Rogova personally, have taken on as a sacred duty to monitor this process, “because we have betrayed so much these women, broke them, and we have isolated them so much as a society, therefore no more violation will be allowed.”
KWN will organize an exhibition during the "16 Days of Activism Against Gender Based Violence" campaign, meanwhile members were asked to notify the KWN staff if they plan any activities for this campaign. Thus, KWN can share the information with the Security Gender Coordination Group, in order to include these activities in the campaign calendar and inform citizens.
            Further, Rogova spoke about the KWN’s concern with latest women's murders (Femicide) becoming commonplace. KWN decided to hire a lawyer for the case of Zejnepe Berisha aiming to increas the punishment to the perpetrator, but also to convey the message to the relevant institutions and everyone else that someone is following these cases and the perpetrators of these offenses will not go unpunished. Also, KWN cooperation with BIRN has enabled participation in court cases through their monitoring.    
Later, the members had the opportunity to share information about the activities that were recently taken, where Magbule Elezi from the Kosovo Midwifes Association informed that in cooperation with KWN they met the Minister of Health where among other raised concerns, it was emphasized the issue of maternity wards closing. The Minister has expressed the willingness to push this matter forward, re-opening of maternity wards so every woman have the opportunity to take these services as close as possible to their place of residence.
            Nicole Farnsworth, the Program Manager and Lead Researcher at KWN, shared the information that soon she will be giving a speech in Brussels that deals with the EU mechanisms for funding women-led civil society organizations (WCSOs). Together with members issues related to two different policy papers KWN is in the process of writing were discussed. Further, members filled our a survey which contained questions related to funds made available by the EU and to what extend these address the issues that their organizations identify as the priorities in Kosovo. This survey moreover seeks to understand what type of support mechanisms grass-roots WCSOs need from the EU (in terms of funding, political support, etc.). The second round of questions evolved around the extent to which the EU Delegation in Kosovo is consulting WCSOs when planning, implementing and evaluating IPA programming and how the political section within the delegation is meeting WCSOs to set the country’s political agenda, to consult them on political matters and how much they feel that this section is mentioning gender equality issues in public (media, in public events, etc.)
At the end of the first part of the meeting, Mrs. Rogova informed the attendees that the Lobby for Gender Equality in Kosovo will organize three-day meeting in Durrës on 24-26 November 2017. Meanwhile, she added that the several-day meeting of KWN member organizations in Durrës is scheduled to be held during spring where the new KWN Strategy will be drafted.
The KWN 2017 Annual Members’ Meeting is set to be held on December 16, 2017.
This meeting was financed by the European Union Office in Kosovo. 

 
Kosova Women's Network