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The Iraq Foundation (IF) wishes to contract with an External Evaluator to carry out an independent evaluation of its Women Against Violence and Extremism (WAVE) project, funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. The one-year project is implemented in Ramadi, Anbar province; Tikrit, Salaheddin province; and Mosul and Hamdaniya, in Nenawa province, and targeted women, families, and local communities. For further information please see the attached Terms of Reference document.

Family event in Mosul

The Iraq Foundation (IF) is currently implementing a 12-month pilot project in 4 locations: the city of Mosul and Hamdaniya in Nenawa governorate; Hayy Al-Mal’ab in Ramadi, Anbar governorate; and Hayy Arba’een in the city of Tikrit, Salaheddin governorate, with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism. The project is providing a core group (56) of returnee (and IDP) women who are survivors of violence with training to enable them to coach and guide a broader segment of women in their communities. Trained women “coaches” will reach out to and work with a broader group of women in the community to increase their understanding about VE and coach them to recognize extremist and violent behavior, build family resilience, and evolve strategies and tools to promote tolerance and moderation, and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

In the period December 1, 2018 -February 28, 2019, the Iraq Foundation and its partners implemented Objective 2 of the project. We completed the dialogue meetings (Objective 2, Activity 3), launched the family events (Objective 2, Activity 4), and held feedback meetings (Objective 2, Activity 5). Women Leaders (WL) who received training through the project held meetings with community women, of whom a large proportion are mothers, to raise awareness about VE, help women to identify signs of extremism or manifestations of violence, and coach them on building resilience by resolving family and community conflicts peacefully and through moderation and dialogue. WL encouraged community women to speak about their experiences and observations regarding violence and/or extremism, and how women can become mediators and agents in countering VE. Family events brought together mothers and children (both girls and boys) in community settings where competitive game

Family event in Hamdaniya

s and activities were played. WL and mothers observed the behavior of children during the competition to learn about children’s interactions and their ability to cooperate and compete peacefully. Local officials attended some of the family events. Following dialogue meetings and family events, WL held feedback sessions with mothers to assess the results of dialogues and community events and provide further coaching to mothers.

Notably, understanding about VE is expanding beyond the immediate beneficiaries targeted by the project. Community women who participated in the dialogue meetings, family events, and feedback sessions have been spreading their newly acquired knowledge and skills to other women, men, and children in their extended families and the community (please see Personal Narratives section below). WL have strengthened their status as coaches and mentors, and community women have encouraged others to benefit from their skills in mediation of conflicts or handling difficult situations with children. Teachers and other professionals who have participated in the project have been especially active in using their acquired knowledge and skills in their work environment, such as in classrooms, in medical clinics, and on the media. Local officials were supportive of the project, seeing it as a valuable contribution to CVE in their communities.

The Iraq Foundation (IF) is currently implementing a 12-month pilot project in 4 locations: the city of Mosul and Hamdaniya in Nenawa governorate; Hayy Al-Mal’ab in Ramadi, Anbar governorate; and Hayy Arba’een in the city of Tikrit, Salaheddin governorate, with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism. The project is providing a core group (56) of returnee (and IDP) women who are survivors of violence with training to enable them to coach and guide a broader segment of women in their communities. Trained women “coaches” will reach out to and work with a broader group of women in the community to increase their understanding about VE and coach them to recognize extremist and violent behavior, build family resilience, and evolve strategies and tools to promote tolerance and moderation, and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

During the quarter September – November 2018, Iraq Foundation and its partners completed the third segment of the training for women in the four locations (Objective 1, Activity 2), with a three-day workshop devoted to developing their coaching and mentoring skills. Following this workshop, the women leaders began holding meetings with mothers in the community (Objective 2, Activity 3). The purpose of these “dialogue meetings” is to spread understanding of VE more broadly within the community through women’s networks, neighbors and families, and sensitize local women to manifestations of extremism and violence, whether within the family or within the community, with the objective of building resilience within families..

Women leaders used the coaching skills they had acquired through training to encourage women to question behavior around them, identify markers of violence, and explore ways in which women can mediate and mitigate actual or potential conflict, and encourage negotiation, moderation, and tolerance. Women leaders also undertook initiatives to mediate conflicts in the community, especially within families or between families.   They led meetings with local officials and stakeholders to inform them of their CVE mission and solicit their active participation and support in preventing or protecting against violence and undertaking remedial actions to avert potential extremism, such as among youth in schools.

As bereaved mothers, sisters, daughters, and wives, women bear the brunt of violence brought on by radicalization. They, therefore, have a vested interest in peace and stability for their families and communities, and they should be empowered and mobilized to be at the forefront of countering violence and extremism (VE).

Iraq Foundation (IF) is implementing a 12-month pilot project in 4 locations: the city of Mosul and Hamdaniya in Nenawa governorate; Hayy Al-Mal’ab in Ramadi, Anbar governorate; and Hayy Arba’een in the city of Tikrit, Salaheddin governorate, with the goal of equipping women to build family and community resilience against violence and extremism. The project is providing a core group (56) of returnee (and IDP) women who are survivors of violence with training to enable them to coach and guide a broader segment of women in their communities. Trained women “coaches” will reach out to and work with a broader group of women in the community to increase their understanding about VE and coach them to recognize extremist and violent behavior, build family resilience, and evolve strategies and tools to promote tolerance and moderation, and to resolve conflicts peacefully.

While addressing women directly, the project also addresses stresses and tensions faced by families and therefore has a “whole community” dimension. The goal is to enable women, particularly those who have lost loved ones, to become agents for peace and moderation, to bolster resilience to radicalization among family members, and to develop women-led, community-based solutions to the problem of violence and extremism. The project will allow women to discuss challenges, define markers of VE from their own experiences, and come up with family-based interventions and community-based activities that can be effective within the family framework. The project takes into account ethnic and religious diversity in post-conflict locations and seeks to reflect diversity, and tolerance of diversity, in its programming.

Al Rasid Monitoring and Evaluation Report

Please find the Monitoring and Evaluation Report (Arabic) for the Al Rasid Project.

Al Rasid Final Report

Women in Iraq face high levels of gender-based violence (GBV), even by regional standards. With almost 55% of women affected by GBV in diverse forms, and increased violence against women due to the crimes committed by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) there is a great need to combat this phenomenon in Iraqi society.

With the adoption in 2013 of a National Strategy (NS) for the Advancement of Women by the Government of Iraq (GOI), Iraqi society seems ready to face the challenges of combatting legal, social, and economic challenges faced by women. The 2014 launching of the National Action Plan (NAP) on UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 1325 acknowledged the importance of women in the peacebuilding process.

Al-Rasid (The Monitor) capitalized on the momentum generated by these new initiatives, with the goal of supporting the NAP and monitoring and evaluating its implementation. . The project targeted national and provincial stakeholders, women victims of violence, including women displaced as the result of conflict, community members, and Iraqi society at large through the following three objectives:

Al-Rasid project was implemented and successfully completed in 5 provinces: Baghdad, Basra, Erbil, Babil and the Ninawa Plain and reached 3505 direct beneficiaries.

ERW Final Report_Page_01

Empowering Returnee Women Final Report

Over the course of 9 months Iraq Foundation trained female head of households in liberated areas of return in the three provinces of Anbar, Nenawa, and Salaheddin. Through these trainings, the women developed the capacity to serve as leaders and advocates for other women in their communities as they rebuild their lives. This report details objectives, results, success stories, and recommendations based on IF’s assessments throughout the project.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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To discuss the problems of families and women in liberated areas, on October 30th IF held a roundtable meeting in Baghdad with the Directorate for Women’s Empowerment in the Council of Ministers, and trained Women Leaders from Nenawa, Salaheddine and Anbar. The meeting was attended by senior representatives from several ministries, including the Ministries of Interior, Education, Defense and Health, as well as representatives from IF and the field teams from the 3 provinces.

Women Leaders requested:

  • Officials to conduct visits to the liberated provinces to identify the conditions of citizens and provide them with psychological and moral support after liberation from Da’esh.
  • Opening of offices to issue citizenship certificates in areas such as Qayyara to eliminate long distance travel to Mosul.
  • Opening of additional vocational training centers to eliminate financial burden of long distance travel to major cities.
  • Ministry of Interior to instruct police departments to start courses for women to learn self-defense to protect themselves and their families in the event of an emergency.
  • Greater support for healthcare and the provision of vaccines for children. Authorities were requested to address the issue of bad vaccines in health centers and work seriously to combat the diseases prevalent in camps, especially scabies and lice.
  • Follow up on the Social Welfare and Protection Law for widows and divorcees to provide psychological and moral support to them.

Representatives of the ministries outlined steps they would take to report these findings to their superiors and follow up with both the Women Leaders and IF. Ministry officials provided the women with hotline telephone numbers, personal lines, and contacts for communication with provincial councils. Some expressed the need for better communication between women and professional centers and the need to establish new centers in hard to reach areas.

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IF conducted a Leadership Training over a two-day span on advocacy, leadership, and networking for women leaders (WLs).

During the training, IF distributed smartphones to 60 WLs in three provinces (Anbar, Nenawa and Salaheddin). WLs attended technical training on communication skills through use of smartphone applications including Facebook, Viber, Whatsapp, Telegram and Instagram applications.

The WLs created groups with one another on Whatsapp to establish a mode of communication between them. These groups will allow the women to raise problems that they are facing and consult with their peers to seek solutions. The smartphones will also allow having an effective, real-time dissemination of critical information to their communities and officials on matters concerning healthcare, security, and more.

Cell phones cropDhefafa Al Jarahi,  IF’s Country Manager in Iraq, conducted field visits to attend the leadership training in Qayyarah and Al Jadaa in the province of Nenawa, and technical training in the Arbaeen neighborhood in the province of Salaheddin. IF contracted a technical expert in each of the three provinces to communicate with WLs and government agencies in the implementation areas.

During the month of July, the external evaluator visited all of the five locations in the three provinces to carry out focus group sessions, questionnaires and interviews.

IF is enabling trained women leaders (through their communications with security forces, local councils, community police and Family Protection Units (FPUs)) to provide ongoing information and updates to their community on security, available social and psycho-social services for women (e.g. counseling), legal services, government payouts to returnees, and other resources.

Women's forums crop

 

IMG_2476Iraq Foundation Country Manager, Ms. Dhefaf Al-Jarahi, visited Hayy Arba’een district in Tikrit, Salaheddin province on May 25. As part of the Foundation’s project “Empowering Returnee Women”, she oversaw the training of returnee and IDP women leaders from Tikrit and provided technical assistance to the women.

ERW is supported by the German Government and seeks to build the capacities of returnee and IDP women in Nenawa, Anbar, and Salaheddin provinces, to become spokespersons and advocates for their communities. The training included women selected at previous workshops held in March and April for returnee and IDP women, with an emphasis on women with dependents. The workshops addressed 200 women, including 100 women from the Hayy Arba’een and another 100 from First Qadisiya districts in Tikrit. Through the discussion sessions, 24 women from Tikrit were selected based on their demonstrated potential and wish to become leaders and “ambassadors” for their communities.

Following the fruitful discussions with the women, which outlined their needs and aspirations, Al-Jarahi was greatly impressed with the high level of leadership and enthusiasm expressed by the women. Collectively, the strong drive they possess to improve their own lives and the lives of others in their communities was consistently apparent throughout.

The workshop on May 25 was the third day of training for the women in Tikrit, and is part of a series of workshops carried out by the Iraq Foundation in the three provinces.

 

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