Building opportunities from obstacles

Women panelist in a discussion

Building opportunities from obstacles

WFD works with local partners to promote women's political leadership worldwide. WFD is focused on creating an inclusive and supportive environment in the ASEAN region that enables politically active women to participate in and assume leadership roles in national, local, and regional politics.

A quick internet search of the UN's Sustainable Development Goal number 5 confronts us with a stark reality: 'It will take another 40 years for men and women to be represented equally in national politics at the current pace’.

What are some obstacles in achieving equal representations  

There are several reasons responsible for this sluggish pace. A recent study from WFD highlighted that  lack of financial resources, sexism, and state repression were the most enduring barriers to improving women’s political leadership.   
Addressing the issue in the ASEAN region: WFD’s experience  
Supporting women’s political leadership is an integral part of WFD’s strategy. WFD works with local partners, forming alliances to share knowledge and support women leaders across globe.  

To this end, WFD is working in the ASEAN region to foster an inclusive and supportive environment that enables politically active women to participate and assume leadership roles in national, local, and regional politics. 

WFD’s long-term outcome in the region is to engage with 1000 politically active women leaders in Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia to have equal opportunities to exercise their leadership at both national and regional levels. WFD is collaborating closely with political leaders to develop effective solutions that support women's political leadership at both the national and regional levels. 

WFD is undertaking a robust analysis of the barriers faced by women leaders, including violence against women in politics. This analysis will enable decision makers to make informed decisions based on factual analysis of the problem. Moreover, WFD is conducting capacity building initiatives aimed at developing the leadership skills of women leaders and other stakeholders, as well as promoting advocacy and forming alliances to strengthen the voice around women's political leadership. 

Looking ahead 

WFD's efforts to empower women in politics is strongly supported by a commitment to build alliances, build capacity of women leaders, advocate in various regional platforms to promote women’s representation and leadership, and provide research-based analysis of problems that can help decision making for policy makers. 

WFD remains committed to supporting women political leaders by enhancing their knowledge, strengthening their leadership skills, and enabling them to effectively represent themselves at both national and regional levels.