As part of the joint effort by HEYA and the Egyptian Feminst Union to support women leaders, whether those preparing to run for the next local councils’ elections or those interested in participating in the public domain, the two organizations signed a cooperation protocol on 16 th of July 2015, aimed to enable women to analyze the different state public policies and to formulate new policies that address the problems faced by their communities, through utilizing the expertise of HEYA Program in the field of public policy.
The cooperation resulted in a group of HEYA trained experts who have developed a training manual for policy analysis and formulation, and in turn delievered training to 720 women on the same topic. The Egyptian Feminst Union has extensive expertise and works with nearly 160 NGOs in Egypt; this number can be doubled through the social media network and its relationships with partner institutions that work in the areas of women, local governments, amendment of the Personal Status Law, and participation in parliamentary elections, in addition to the Union’s interest in carrying out studies and research in areas such as amending the Personal Status Law and arbitrary divorce.
Accordingly, 60 women leaders have been nominated by the Egyptian Feminst Union from 3 governorates (Cairo, Alexandria and Qena); half of them were candidates in the upcoming elections in Egypt. The selected women participated in August and September in an intensive training workshop on analyzing and formulating public policy.
Based on the training, the women trainees participated in the formulation of public policies on issues of concern or interest to them. For example, women participants from Qena chose topics about technical education, politicalempowerment of women, and violence against children. Participants from Alexandria preferred to focus on legislations relating to women and especially the custody of children, divorce, alimony and the woman-sought divorce or al-Khul’. HEYA Program followed up with the participants to facilitate their work and to ensure that the policy papers were ready on time.
Following the training, the Egyptian Feminst Union, in coordination with HEYA Program, sought to identify a number of experts utilizing the Union's extensive network to hold round tables discussions with the women to discuss and improve the historical and legislative frameworks, and the alternatives put forward by the women in their policy papers.
To further the support to women and advance their careers in the public domain, the HEYA Program was keen on holding an advanced training for women who have already produced public policy papers to enable them discuss these policies with the experts whom the Union will suggest their names in the near future.
In order to further strengthen the partnership between the two organizations, a representative from the Union will participate in a workshop aimed to prepare the national media action plan for HEYA Program; the plan will be implemented over the course of a whole year starting from December 2015.
We are confident that the partnership between the Union and HEYA Program will generate innovative and constructive ideas aimed at supporting Egyptian women leaders in their future career.