The former President of Liberia, H.E. Ms. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, is the Patron of the African Women Leaders Network (AWLN) since March 2019. The agreed structure of the network comprises a Steering Committee, with the Forum, national chapters, supported by a Steering Committee and the Group of Friends to the African Union (Addis Ababa) and to the United Nations (New York). The Network is coordinated through the AWLN Secretariat (Addis Ababa and New York). In addition to coordination, the secretariat supports the establishment of national chapters as well as resource mobilisation, including from local development partners. To date, the African Women Leaders Network continues to grow with over thousands of members who contribute to expanding and operationalizing the Network, with representation from almost every country in Africa.
First and Second AWLN Forums
The first “High-Level Women Leaders Forum for Africa’s Transformation”, which gathered over a hundred (100) women leaders in politics, business and civil society agreed on the need to establish a regional network of women leaders who would advocate for peace, security and women’s leadership across the continent. In the “Call to Action” African women leaders adopted in June 2017, they committed to advancing the women agenda through key objectives and activities. Key components of the Call to Action include: Establishing and nurturing an inclusive Network; Enhancing the role of women in the implementation of the African Union Roadmap for “Silencing the Guns by 2020”; Undertaking Solidarity Missions; Supporting women to be part of decision-making processes; and Holding African leaders accountable for implementing agreed legal, institutional and policy frameworks and protocols.
The Second “Women Leaders Forum” of the AWLN was held at the AU headquarters in Addis Ababa (Ethiopia) in April 2018 and yielded the adoption of an action plan to drive thematic areas of work, with an emphasis on launching flagship projects. The forum also agreed on an inclusive governance structure and operational framework cascading to regional and national levels to support the implementation of the action plan.
Group of Friends of the AWLN to the UN in New York.
The Group of Friends of the AWLN to the UN was formally launched with a dynamic and cross-regional Group of Member States in February 2018. the Permanent Missions of Ghana and Germany to the United Nations provide leadership on this agenda by gathering strong political support among Permanent Representations and UN Offices to the UN, with the support of the Permanent Observer Mission of the African Union to the United Nations.
Group of Friends of the AWLN to the UN in Addis.
The Group of Friends of the AWLN to the African Union was launched in June 2019 in Addis Ababa under the leadership of H.E. Rebecca Otengo Amuge, Ambassador of Uganda to Ethiopia and Chairperson of the Group of Friends of the AWLN to the AU, and H.E. Brita Wagener, Ambassador of Germany to Ethiopia and Co-Chairperson of AWLN Group of Friends to the AU. The Group of Friends is supported by Member States accredited to the African Union and the United Nations.
- African Women Pioneers
- Senior African Union and United Nations Officials
- Young Women Leaders Caucus
- Women in Rural Areas
- National Chapters
- Group of Friends
- Private Sector