Wendi Momen MBE
Pat took on the role of Chair of NAWO as a temporary measure just before COVID-19 struck! She has been getting to know fellow trustees through the current monthly Zoom meetings. She has an interest in strong governance procedures as well as the work which NAWO does for CSW and the Alliance. On a daily basis Pat works with volunteer students from across Scottish Universities at UN House Scotland in Edinburgh leading a team on Gender Equality (SDG 5) and supporting interconnectivity with other teams such as Climate Change and Black Lives Matter.
My interest in humanity in both a local and global capacity
from childhood has highlighted the plight of women and girls
and although I never had thought of myself as a feminist,
now I believe I am.
Having a career that has taken me locally, nationally and
internationally I see the global need for a more equitable and
equal society, for peace making and women in the decision
making process along with legality and culture change.
My mission is advocating for change ,being the voice for the
voiceless and being part of the shared compact of the 2030
Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals.
Planet 5050 by 2030 is not going to be achieved without the
passion, action, creativity, advocacy and mobilisation of civil
society. This means supporting and strengthening the
womens’ movement at all levels.
Now is the time to leave thoughtful words and conversations
with networks and gender machineries about how we can do
this. Now is the time….
A part-time English teacher and committed feminist: in 2006, one of my female
students here in London suffered an acid-attack as punishment for an arranged
marriage that went wrong. It was then I decided to become an active member of
the UN WOMEN UK promoting women’s human rights and gender-equality wherever
possible; empowering women like my student move from victimhood to survivorship
to find their own unique voices. Using my skills as an educator I devise, develop and
deliver education programmes promoting gender-equality to students of every age.
I am delighted to be involved as a trustee of the National Alliance of Women’s
Organisations (NAWO). It’s a privilege for me to be in touch with so many grassroots
organisations in the UK and use the opportunity to get to know our wonderful NAWO
members. In NAWO we have a safe space and platform for our members to tell us
what really matters to them; especially in this time of CV19. I believe that together
we are stronger: if we speak to government as one voice we are more likely to turn
words to action and make lasting change.
An active member of member the Centenary Action Group (CAG) lead by Helen
Pankhurst, we work to ensure more women are represented in the political arena.
This is critical in the light of the recent pandemic CV19 where women’s voices have
been all too seldom heard.
As part of the All Parliamentary Group on North Korea I support one of few safe
spaces where North Korean women/girls can speak out on behalf of their sisters who
continue to suffer appalling violence in North Korea.
Currently coming through lock-down I am researching the portrayal of sexual
violence in the visual arts and also looking ahead at the what a post-Covid 19 world
might look like – especially the impact on schools and the kind of visits I used to
make in person. How that might change and what the alternatives are in the virtual
world to promote gender equality and end violence against women/girls.
Before 1986 my interests included science, biochemistry, family, education, Health Promotion and various voluntary organisations..
By 1995 I was involved in the Baha’i Faith, UNA-UK, UNIFEM (now UN Women) and was one of 30,000 women who attended the NGO Forum in Huairo which ran parallel to the 4th World Conference on Women in Beijing, China. Since then I have attended many of the subsequent CSW conferences, following the progress of CEDAW, the MDGs, the SDGs and other work on attaining gender equality and a better world.
Meanwhile in 2009 I was helping WAC-UNA-UK and eventually became the Chairman. Although supportive of various women’s NGOs I have a particular interest in NAWO-UK and was co-opted as a trustee in April 2019.
It is distressing to observe the unnecessary poverty and misery in the world. The input of women in decision making etc. is grossly inadequate. So I want to encourage women to reach their potential, and ensure the solutions in UN work and SDGs are given resources and implemented. We need all our diverse people, men as well as women, to come together and work for unity and justice. I have no doubt that applying our knowledge and wise principles we can bring about a happier global civilisation.
Annette Lawson OBE
Barbara Cleary (SecurityWomen)
Barbara is passionate about women’s rights and development and economic empowerment and joined NAWO because she believes in its potential to bring about change and improve the lives of women.
Favourite feminist quote:
“Here’s to strong women,
may we know them,
may we be them,
may we raise them.” – Unknown
Barbara is an HR specialist with wide ranging management and human resources experience in the public and voluntary sectors, including at her own consultancy, Headstart (which has a focus on building and developing workforces to achieve effective service delivery). With over 20 years’ senior management experience she has delivered on a variety of change management programmes, achieving cultural and organisational change. She has actively led and championed diversity issues in the workplace, in particular initiatives to support women to develop and progress their careers.
Barbara served as Vice Chair of NAWO and NAWO representative on UKJCW and on the EWL Board. Currently she represents NAWO on Equally Ours, British Institute of Human Rights and G20Women (Read more about the press release of UNWomen and Women 20 call on G20 members).