NADIA BAKHSHI AWARD

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The Nadia Bakhshi Award* is established by Melissa Network with the support of Refu-Aid and the European Network of Migrant Women and will be given to refugee women in order to support their education and their contribution to social change. The award is named in the honour of Nadia Bankhshi who lost her life in Serbia in December 2016. She was leading the way for her daughter and two grandchildren away from oppression, to a world where she hoped that human rights would be respected.   READ MORE …    

STATEMENT OF SOLIDARITY WITH REFUGEE WOMEN AND GIRLS

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Brussels, 9 June 2017 “I am not free while any woman is unfree, even when her shackles are very different from my own” ― Audre Lorde On 2-4 June European Network of Migrant Women (ENOMW) held their AGM in Athens, hosted by the Melissa Network – a grassroots initiative that works on capacity building and empowerment of migrant and refugee women and girls. During our meeting, we also visited a refugee camp.   We, as a network, reject the term “refugee crisis”. The devastating situation in which thousands of refugees, including women and girls, are caught, is not their crisis. It is a crisis of the European values and priorities and an outcome of the unsustainable political and economic model, pursued by the global patriarchal institutions.   After being in Athens for only a few days it is plain to see the toll that having a refugee status has on […]

UN SECURITY COUNCIL: SEXUAL VIOLENCE IN CONFLICT. SPEECH BY MINA JAF

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15 May 2017, New York – Following the release of the UN Secretary General Report on conflict-related sexual violence, UN Security Council held a meeting dedicated to the Sexual Violence in Conflict. Our member Mina Jaf, founder of Women Refugee Route, spoke at the meeting on behalf of the UN Group Women, Peace and Security, on the situation of women and girl refugees and the humanitarian responses to the sexual(ised) violence widespread in conflict and war. Watch Mina’s speech HERE >>>

IDEAS FOR EUROPE DINNER DEBATE: REFUGEE WOMEN IN EU POLICY AND ACTION

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On 31 March we were invited to take part in a dinner debate organised by the Centre Maurits Coppieters, to speak about the situation of migrant and refugee women and girls in Europe and the outcomes of the #WomensVoices project, that was coordinated by the European Women’s Lobby (EWL). Our chair, Anna Zobnina spoke at the debate addressed to over 70 members of Centre Coppierters, including members of the European Free Alliance (EFA), academics and youth organisatoins. You can read the full details of the debate here >>

OUR VOICE: AFRICAN REFUGEE WOMEN AND GIRLS’ PRAYERS OF HOPE

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Germany, April 2017, THIS COLLECTION OF PRAYERS BY AFRICAN WOMEN AND GIRLS was published by our German member, Maisha African Women and it documents the intimate thoughts, hopes and difficulties of refugee women as they travel towards and in Europe. From fleeing forced marriage and FGM to difficulties in obtaining legal status in Europe, to sex-, race- and religion-stereotyping  – these are the private prayers of women and girls, looking to be understood.   “Merciful God, there is a stereotype of women of my religion that seems to dominate the Western media, as weak-willed and submissive and always likely to be veiled. Some even say we do not have opinions of our own and worse, we cannot express these opinions in the presence of men. I am angry at these portrayals, as I had my own business and was never known to without an opinion, as were many other women […]