Afghan Women's Network

Afghan Women's Network

Networking Introduction

Networking is an efficient tool for the exchange of knowledge and information among individuals and organizations. AWN Networking Department is one of the AWN core Element in Institutional Structure for develop and maintaining relationships and contacts with National, International and governmental organizations and as well as individuals members in order to share experiences, coordinate activities, exchange opinions, explore funding opportunities, identify sources of technical expertise, and enlarge the network of women activists and advocates in Afghanistan

2. AWN Networking Goals, Objectives and Facilities

2.1. AWN Networking Goals

Empowering civil society:  The main goal of networking lies in building a strong civil society that is capable and effective, through capacity building and empowerment. The Afghan Women s Network (AWN) also aims to promote, develop, and institute the role of NGOs in society, allowing them to contribute to setting the rules of a developed and democratic civil society.

Promoting coordination:  The Afghan Women s Network (AWN) plans to develop, promote, and coordinate NGOs across many fields, inside or outside the network. They also seek to coordinate the relationship with other networks, UN organizations, and international governmental and non-governmental agencies.

Sharing information and experiences: The Afghan Women s Network (AWN) aims at sharing information, data, and experiences to develop member capacities, skills, capabilities, and resources on all professional levels: programmatic, administrative, and institutional.

Solidarity and cooperation: One of the aims of the Afghan Women s Network (AWN) is to promote solidarity and cooperation with member or non-member NGOs facing crises or difficulties. Solidarity and cooperation are integral components of networking.

2.2. Networking Objectives:

  • Shaping a mutual and clear concept of capacity building and advocacy; Shaping a mutual and modern vision of the network sector; Establishing a suitable legal environment for their work; Complementing and participating in a modern state;
  • Building civil society and spaces on the bases of strong alliances, clear objectives, a mutual vision, and a pivotal role for the Afghan Women s network (AWN).
  • Moving from the role of service provision to a more effective role in the process of social change.
  • Coordinating and avoiding the duplication of services; developing skills, training, and building capacities.

2.3 AWN Networking Feasibilities

      Afghan Women s Network (AWN) aims at contributing to:

  • Ending competition between civil society organizations and developing cooperation and teamwork.
  • Promoting decision-making concepts and mechanisms in NGOs, at all levels
  • Defining the active and influential role of NGOs through multilateral and group dialogue.
  • Cooperating on overcoming economic, political, social, and cultural risks and challenges.
  • Promoting negotiations with decision-makers on all levels.
  • Organizing lobbying and advocacy on economic and social policy.
  • Empowering NGOs to build capacities and raise awareness
  • Conducting objective and bold assessments.

3. AWN Networking Principles and Values

The principles and values of networking rest on promoting and developing the role of civil society institutions within a framework of diversity, democracy, the rule of law, collaboration, sustainable development, and social justice, in addition to respecting the privacy of members.

4. AWN Networking Services:

Based on AWN Mandate, the AWN Networking provide services for it’s in below two main categories As 

4.1 AWN core Services

Facilitation of specific programs to strengthen ties between the network’s members:

The Networking and coordination approaches allow the network to effectively amalgamate the member organizations. These approaches maintain the member organization in a firm relationship and strengthen ties among them. One of the main and regular activities of AWN is the monthly coordination meetings which enables all member organizations and individual members come together and share their findings, challenges and recommendations over the month. In addition to all these, the coordination and networking approaches generate a sense of cooperation among the member organization; and let them act as a single unite for shared goals and objectives.

Facilitation and provision of space for the meetings and gatherings:

Besides the monthly coordination meetings, AWN also serves up its sub offices to the member organizations, individual members and core partners to conduct meetings and gatherings. Meanwhile, the Network facilitates outsource spaces for small joint meetings and large gatherings.

Establishment relation between member organizations,  donors and government

AWN has been utilizing its formal and professional relationship and working background with the International donor agencies to assist and support the member organizations to seek grant opportunities and to strengthen relation in the area of fundraising. AWN plays the role of a bridge between member organizations and the International community and seeks the maximum opportunities of facilitation for its members. At meanwhile AWN through its professional relation with government entities facilities  relation between its member and the government.

Overall assessment of the member organizations:

The member organizations’ assessment is a data gathering and diagnostic process in which it steps back from the day to day details of life in the organization and try to see the bigger picture, the trends, patterns and dynamics that have made the organization what it is today. The review can be broad, scanning all aspects of the organization (programs/services, structure, staffing, personnel, finances, internal systems, leadership, culture, etc.); or it can focus on selected areas, depending on the needs of the organization.

Member organizations’ capacities enhancement:

Projects and grants are getting more competitive day to another as the International funds gradually decreased and only multi-aspect strong NGOs could get the chances to implement the projects and obviously the NGOs’ success is very closely depended on these grants. Therefore, following the assessment, the Network strives through its Capacity Building Department to enhance the capacities of member organizations by providing them professional trainings and workshops.

4.2 Ancillary service

Resource Center: The resource center of AWN has been established as a main source of information consisting books, magazines, research papers, reports, laws collections, learning materials and etc. with the purpose to support the member organizations, individual members, students and any other individuals and organizations who/that are interested to find out the most updated women related information, reports and figures. The center also offers 50% discount of the market price for printing facilities to the member organizations.

News and publications: The Network provides both individual members and member organizations about the current affairs, jobs opportunities, grant opportunities, countrywide women’s situation, and violence against women and children’s recent cases through its website, Facebook and twitter where each member can come across the latest news, particularly regarding women related issues, at national and the international level. In addition, the Network has a resource center which provides printed version of publications to its members and these publications include magazines, books, research papers newspapers, brochures, one pagers, pamphlets and etc.

Introduction of women to roundtables, interviews, radio and television programs:

Media is one of the effective tools to convey messages to concerning governmental authorities and to the International community, rise voices against miseries and violence, reflect the actual wants of the women and finally to influence high level decision making. AWN introduces women activist from both individual members and member organizations to the roundtables, television, radio and newspapers interviews to discuss the current issues of the women in order to defend women’s rights and eventually to obtain their position in the society. The Newark does not only introduce women activists to the round tables and other media components, meanwhile it is also having media cover and broadcast its activities in the capital and the provinces.

 Providing advocacy opportunities for individual members:

The Network has had several years’ noteworthy experience and background in the field of advocacy. The activities under advocacy have been being carried out by the committees consisting volunteer experienced members. These endeavors are not limited to the urban areas of the country but their wings reach to the very outlying areas of the provinces. The Network has had tangible outcomes over the years in this arena which left the greatest impacts on the people, in particular, on the women’s lives. The Network was able to effectively foster the idea of self-confidence among the women and to strengthen them to struggle against adverse conditions and to turn such situation to their favor; to ultimately seize the opportunities pertaining to their social and political affairs.

5. Forming of Network:

Afghan Women s Network (AWN) always tried to form a large network compositional of below networks.

 6. Forms of NGO Networks:

National: It usually takes the form of solutions to the pressing challenges. Member NGOs collaborate and position themselves vis-à-vis other civil society organizations, the state, and public and social policies.

 Regional: It is selectively and willingly formed to express a common vision, clear tasks, and mutual regional objectives in order to face challenges deriving from the creation of new regional blocks.

International: The first international NGO networks developed with the emergence of the idea to incorporate civil society organizations in the international UN summits. In addition, the need for international networks grew with the escalation of the global circumstances and the rise of international institutions such as the World Bank, the IMF, and the WTO.