Weaving Wisdom, Confronting Crises, Forging the Future

Asia Pacific NGO Forum on Beijing +15

Will take place in Quezon City, Manilla, Philippines from 22-24 October, 2009.   Brief outline below…To register and find more information please go to



Asia Pacific NGO Forum on Beijing+15
Weaving wisdom, confronting crises, forging the future
22-24 October 2009
Miriam College, Katipunan Road, Loyola Heights, Quezon City, Philippines

Asia-Pacific Women’s Watch (APWW)
Patricia B. Licuanan, PhD
President, Miriam College

The NGO Forum will focus not so much on what governments have done and not done, but more on chronicling what civil society, especially the women’s movements, has contributed towards the strategic objectives of the Beijing Platform for Action. As such, the NGO Forum will highlight some of the innovative, strategic or successful initiatives by women.

The Forum will also be the venue for the women’s movements in the region to share their views on new economic, environmental, political, social and security issues – in the region and globally — in terms of their impact on women’s needs and interests. These may include economic recession, climate change, spread of HIV/AIDS and armed conflicts. Therefore, the NGO Forum will invite researchers to share their analyses with the NGO participants, which will in turn exchange views with each other and will define their strategic objectives as civil society, at the national, sub-regional and regional levels.

All activities in the Forum are to contribute to its theme:

  • “weaving wisdom” by sharing stories of women’s activism and the approaches, knowledge and skills developed
  • “confronting crises” by presenting papers and programs developed in response to crises, whether economic, environmental, political and cultural, with particular focus on addressing impact on women’s needs and interests
  • “forging the future” by brainstorming ways for inter-country and regional cooperation among civil society organizations to realize and enrich the vision of Beijing and CEDAW.

Contentwise, the forum will consist of two streams:

  1. First stream: Women NGOs sharing stories and drawing lessons for even better NGO actions and social movement building.
    1. Expected Output: Stories of NGO experiences and lessons useful to further improve NGO strategies, or to provide evidence-based recommendations for public policy and action.
  2. Second stream: Women NGOs analysing new trends in the region and globally and how these impact on the condition and status of women.
    1. Expected Output: Strategic objectives and recommended actions addressed to governments, the UN international organizations and donors, and civil society, including women’s organizations.
  • The two streams meet in a session to draft the Asia Pacific NGO strategy for 2010 and beyond. It will contain among others, strategic objections and recommended actions for
  1. strengthening women’s movements and capacity development for NGOs
  2. initiating NGO actions in the face of recent issues and their impact on women’s needs and interests, and
  3. consolidating civil society participation in norm setting at the UN and other international spaces.

While APWW leads the programme by organizing the plenary sessions and ensuring the Forum outputs, NGOs from the region may also organize workshops and seminars. These may be on any of the 12 areas of concern of the Beijing Platform for Action, or any other human rights issues affecting women in the context of the UN Convention for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW). The Host Committee makes available session rooms with LCD projector and computer for these sessions. Alternative methods of communication are encouraged, such as exhibits and films for which time and space are also allocated.


Day 1
(22 October – Thursday)
Day 2
(23 October – Friday)
Day 3
(24 October – Saturday)
9:00 – 10:30 AM Opening Ceremony
Keynote Speech: Dr. Noeleen Heyzer, Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific
Plenary 2: Climate change impact on poverty eradication, human security and gender equality Plenary 4: Feminism through the generations
11:00 – 12:30 PM Plenary 1: Democracy in distress: Issues of women’s representation and civil society engagement in governance Plenary 3: An agency for women in the UN, at last? Time and space for workshops organized by participants
• Working with human rights institutions (SEAWWatch)
2:00 – 3:30 PM Time and space for workshops organized by participants
• In solidarity with refugee women (ANCORW)
• Using Media, Communication and ICT (Isis International)
• Bringing a gender perspective in HIV/AIDS prevention, control, treatment and care (TW2)
Time and space for workshops organized by participants
• Advocating gender justice in the economy (KWNGO)
• Learning from survivors of VAW (WCC)
• Migration, Young feminists, Aid effectiveness (Isis International)
• Mobilizing women entrepreneurs for equality and development (MEHR)
1:30 – 3:00 PM
Time and space for workshops organized by participants
• Voices of young women (ANCORW)
• Voices of trafficked women (CATW)
• Voices of elderly women (JAWW)
3:00 – 4:30 PM
Plenary 5: Beyond the crisis: Forging ahead with Development Alternatives
3:30 – 5:00 PM Sub-regional Meetings: Strategy/ies to strengthen women’s movements (Output: needs, opportunities & plans of NGOs and women’s movements in the sub-regions) Simultaneous workshops on Plenary 1, 2 & 3 (Output: Recommendations to GOs, international organizations & civil society organizations) 4:30 – 6:00 PM
Plenary 6: Adoption of (a) NGO Forum Statement and (b) Asia-Pacific NGO Strategy for 2010 and Beyond
Evening 7:00 PM – Reception Film festival 7:00 PM – Closing rites and Cultural exchange