Although women consist of over half the population of most countries, they hardly get the opportunity to play a role in their countries’ decision making and implementation processes. Women throughout history have been restricted predominantly to the domestic sphere, tasked with devoting their time and efforts for the wellbeing of the family institution. Today, a political culture dominated by men has manifested itself throughout the world, and the lack of women’s active political involvement is widely argued to be a key attribute of political cultures recognizing men as key policy makers and implementors.
It is widely believed that the absence of women in mainstream politics deprives the society of their contribution and the benefit from the qualities women are uniquely known to possess, such as commitment, dedication, empathy and focus, coupled with a deeper understanding, in policy making and implementation. To enable women to come forward and assume social responsibilities, an attitudinal change associated with education and carefully structured training appears vital, therefore, the necessity arises to empower them. A gradual and significant change of mindset from that of a caretaker to a decision maker and initiator is likely to bring forth the best in women, for the benefit of the whole.
The United Nations Security Council Resolution 1325 on, “Women, peace and security,” with its call for “increased representation of women at all decision-making levels in national, regional and international institutions and mechanisms for the prevention, management, and resolution of conflict,” was a landmark development, recognizing the contribution women could make in the areas of peace and security.
The much-reduced presence of women in the political arena of South Asian countries deprives the society of the benefit of comprehensive frameworks that can be achieved by having all key players in the decision-making process. In recognition of the need to increase women’s active involvement in politics, SAPRI has been conducting skills building activities for incumbent women political leaders and women political activists who are likely to emerge as future leaders in several districts of the country for almost a decade.
2013-14- Two workshops of women empowerment
2015- Int. Women’s day activity
2015- Introducing the booklet to the civil society
2015- Introducing the booklet to the diplomatic corps
2015- Two day workshop for women in Embilipitiya
2018-19- Netherlands project