Ten years ago WDN started with a goal of increasing women’s political and civic leadership.
Now, a full and robust network, WDN connects women with each other. Each member comes from different background and has a different story, but they embody many of same qualities; determination, passion, purpose, and a strong voice. Read some of our members' achievements and their commitment to a better world.
Under the oppressive Taliban regime, Naheed Farid was forced to drop out of school. Witnessing the denial of rights to Afghan women for years, she dedicated her career to empowering women.
In Afghanistan, barriers to women’s leadership begin at a young age with a lack of education for girls. The World Bank approximates that only 24 percent of Afghan women over the age of 15 can read and write. Without these skills, women are far less likely to access formal employment opportunities. As a result, less than 20 percent of Afghans surveyed say women contribute to their household income. These statistics make Naheed’s story become that much more remarkable. At age 27, Naheed became one of Afghanistan’s youngest elected officials in history. After being elected, Naheed decided to help women reclaim their rights, take ownership of their future and have a spot at the negotiation table.
Women's unequal political representation remains a problem all over the world, including in Albania. Women constitute approximately 50 percent of the 2.88 million people in Albania, but only 28 percent of Albanian parliamentary seats are held by women.
“Barriers to women's participation in politics are numerous. Albania has made progress in its democratic development since first holding multi-party elections and destroying the communist regime in 1991, but women in leadership still face a lot of barriers,” said Blerta Balilaj, the Executive Director of the WDN Albania chapter.