The Albanian Women Empower Network – AWEN is established on July 1 st , 2009 (and legally registered on December 27 th , 2011) as initiative of eight non-profit organizations focusing on women
protection, with the valuable support of Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation with the financial and technical support of Sida.
The establishment of this network became a necessity in order to strengthen the cooperation among these organizations, to increase the impact of the joint interventions and initiatives and to empower the feminist movement in Albania. Now, AWEN is a formally registered network which consists of women organizations located in seven districts of Albania from North to South, where two thirds of the Albanian population lives.
AWEN’s member NGOs are some of the most active and long-standing women’s NGOs in the country, namely:
• “Gender Alliance for Development Centre”, Tirana;
• “Association of Women and Girls with Social Problems”, Durres;
• “Me, the Woman”, Pogradec;
• “Agritra Vision”, Peshkopi;
• “Woman to Woman”, Shkodra;
• “Woman’s Forum”, Elbasan;
• “The Psycho – Social Centre “Vatra”, Vlora;
• “Jona” Association, Saranda;
• “Counseling Line for Girls and Women”, Tirana;
• “Center for Civic and Legal Initiatives”, Tirana.
While initially starting as a Network of eight organizations (2011), the network currently counts 10 member organizations. The last two new member organizations that became part of the network have been considered an asset for the network due to their longstanding experience and unique service offered to DV victims. One of them is a key referral agency for DV cases at national level through the National Hotline for DV Cases and the other owns high level expertise in legal issues on DV and women’s human rights. Both these services are considered an added value to the network.
AWEN member organizations focus on protection and promotion of women rights and advancement of gender equality issues in Albania and channel their work in different directions like provision of a variety of specialized support services for women and girls victims of domestic violence, human trafficking, etc., information dissemination, lobby and advocacy, capacity building of local actors, conducting reviews and researches, etc., all over.
“A society where women and girls fully enjoy their human rights in Albania”
“To work together to empower girls and women socially, economically and politically to participate and realize their rights throughout Albania, regardless of their political orientation, religion, education level, age, sexual orientation, disability, gender identity, or other factors”.
AWEN achieves its goals through joint advocacy at international, national and local levels; forging partnerships with civil society networks, public, private and educational institutions in the country and the region; monitoring legislation implementation; conducting research; being a forum for learning and sharing praxis and hub for capacity development of members; as well as raising funds and managing grants for network members and other civil society organizations to raise awareness, monitor and build capacities of duty bearers, provide specialized support services in collaboration with local authorities and empower women and girls.
Our network works in the field of protection of human rights, in particular, the rights of women and girls, aiming at the social, economic, cultural and political empowerment of women. The main thematic areas are:
• Violence against girls and women;
• Socio-economic empowerment of girls and women;
• Participation of women in politics and decision-making.