Women, health, and the environment are the themes that this organization studies to improve the current situation of the planet
The British NGO, Women's environmental network (WEN), was born in 1989 when a group of pioneers in environmental justice came to the conclusion that saving the planet is a matter of human rights and social justice. The first steps of WEN, according to its website, was to give “clear information to ordinary women about how environmental problems affect them specifically in terms of their biological sex and socially constructed gender”.
Leer en español: Salvar el planeta: Así es como esta ONG lo hace
In fact, WEN founders also concluded that "women's perspectives were often overlooked and undervalued, and that the environmental movement as a whole neglected to adopt gender-sensitive approaches in all environmental issues". For this reason, they decided to undertake the task of demonstrating that the empowerment of women leads them to make positive decisions that help maintain a healthy planet.
Since then and until now, WEN has worked to empower women and take care of the planet. According to this NGO, they are the only organization in the United Kingdom that works for women, health, and the environment simultaneously.
What does WEN do for the environment?
In the United Kingdom, WEN works to raise awareness among citizens and government institutions that climate change is a matter of social inequality. According to the NGO, until the social inequality is resolved, climate change will only continue to worsen. In this sense, climate change must be understood as an environmental problem and a human rights issue.
WEN states that climate change means there are "failures in food supplies, fuel shortages, decreased access to drinking water, and homes swallowed by the sea. It means forced mass migration and worsening resource conflict. It means more frequent and ferocious natural disasters”. These situations affect both men and women, but the latter group, especially in developing nations, usually has no voice in decision-making. So, climate change affects them differently.
To reverse these situations, WEN conducts workshops on gender and climate change and will hold the first Week of action for the environment and menstruation: Environmenstrual Week of Action. On the one hand, the workshops have three objectives:
- Make people reflect
- Work and share practical solutions to the different environmental and gender issues
- Inspire participants to act politically against climate change
On the other hand, the week of action will take place from October 13th to 20th, 2018. The WEN page highlights that the topics to be discussed are:
- Environment (water and marine life)
- Elimination of menstrual products
- Reusable and organic biodegradable menstrual products
- Smash the taboo
- Menstrual health
- Poverty period
- Menstrual Equity
If you want to know more about this event click here
You may be interested: Pollution seriously affects women's health
Could we "copy" the model of this NGO in Latin America?
Theoretically speaking, the initiative carried out by this organization can be recreated in Latin America. Bearing in mind that this NGO has been working for women and the environment for 29 years, asking them for advice is a way to ensure that the implementation is successful.
To constitute an NGO varies according to the conditions that each State requests in the different countries. For this reason, if you are interested in forming this type of organization, we invite you to advice with the corresponding institution. Likewise, to lead empowerment workshops you must have trained personnel to meet the objectives.
It should also be considered that in Latin America there are already organizations that work for the empowerment of women such as UN Women, WWB Foundation, Women's Leadership Center, Research Center for Microfinance, among others.
LatinAmerican Post | Marcela Peñaloza
Translated from "Salvar el planeta: Así es como esta ONG lo hace"