Grantee name: Women's Learning Partnership (WLP)

Mission: Women's Learning Partnership (WLP) is dedicated to women's leadership and empowerment. At its essence, WLP is a builder of networks, working with 20 autonomous and independent partner organizations in the Global South, particularly in Muslim-majority societies, to empower women to transform their families, communities, and societies.

The mission of WLP is to advance communication and cooperation among and between the women of the world in order to protect human rights, facilitate sustainable development, and promote peace.

WLP links those with access to resources, knowledge, and technologies to those without, and augments the voices and visions of the world's resource-poor majority.

WLP believes that dialogue across boundaries of culture, class, gender, generation, and nation is essential for achieving socially equitable and environmentally sound development.

To secure a healthy, safe, and democratic environment for all, WLP works to advance gender equity, involve men and boys in promoting gender parity, and facilitate the exchange of grassroots strategies within and across different cultures. By instituting a viable knowledge and learning framework, WLP's programs provide women and girls of the Global South with the technical knowledge and practical skills needed to participate in the global dialogue about rights, development, and peace.

WLP strongly believes that women, working in partnership, will learn the skills and implement the strategies needed to secure human rights, contribute to the development of their communities, and ultimately create a more peaceful world.

Their primary objectives are to increase the number of women taking on leadership and decision-making roles at family, community, and national levels, and to improve the effectiveness of feminist movements in Muslim-majority societies and globally by strengthening the capacity of their partner organizations.

In cooperation with their partners, WLP creates culturally-adapted leadership training curriculum and implement leadership and empowerment programs for grassroots women in 20 countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

Locations: Bethesda, MD USA and 20 partner countries


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Channel Grants: Since 2006 Channel has made annual grants to the Women's Learning Partnership (WLP) to help empower women to become leaders and changemakers in their communities. Channel's support helps bolster WLP's advocacy and networking programs in the Middle East, where they work in order to promote democratic governance, peacebuilding and women’s human rights. Advocacy campaigns include Claiming Equal Citizenship which focuses on promoting women's equal right to nationality and Equality Without Reservations focused on promoting ratification of the CEDAW Convention and the withdrawal of all reservations. (2006 to present)

News: WLP's Corpus of Laws in Muslim Societies is a live website designed as an interactive, ‘living’ resource providing activists across the globe with multiple language translations of key laws and related texts pertaining to women’s rights, in addition to case studies illuminating how important reforms were achieved by women’s organizations in various countries. The Corpus is structured to 1) organize and label Muslim religious and cultural laws and interpretations; 2) make them universally accessible and useful; and 3) supplement them with relevant advocacy and context documents. Since February of 2013, WLP has uploaded the Constitutions of 15 Muslim-majority countries, splitting and tagging many of these constitutions into searchable sections using key word and interactive map searches. Other resources available through the Corpus include Family Laws, Criminal Codes, and legislation on Violence Against Women for a growing number of countries.

On March 30, 2012, following several years of mobilization by women of collective lands (Soulaliyates) in Morocco, with the tireless support of WLP Morocco/Association Démocratique des Femmes du Maroc (ADFM), and after the publication of two ministerial circulars (July 2009 and October 2010) recognizing the right of women to compensation related to land sales, the Ministry of Interior released a circular (Circular 17).

This circular is positive insofar as:

- It refers to the constitutional provisions on gender equality and the principle of non discrimination, and to the international convention CEDAW,

- It acknowledges and pays tribute to the support given to these women by civil society associations,

- It covers all the specificities of collective land profits (not only the sales) and recognizes the right of women according to these specificities.

The promulgation of a law remains the best solution to protect Soulaliyate women's rights and ensure equality between men and women in collective lands, so ADFM recently started collecting thousands of signatures from citizens to demand that the ministry enact, in accordance with the constitution, a specific law guaranteeing full equality between women and men belonging to the tribes of collective lands.

ADFM has created a short film portraying the Soulaliyates women's fight for the rights to their collective lands.


Photos courtesy of the Women's Learning Partnership.