Women's Leadership Centre
PO Box 90675, Windhoek, Namibia
Who we are
The Women’s Leadership Centre is a feminist women’s rights organisation based in Windhoek, Namibia. We work towards building a society in which all women actively engage in shaping the politics, practices and values of both public and private spheres of life.
Our organisation supports a grassroots development of leadership among Namibian women by promoting the voice, visibility, creativity and transformative leadership of women from the most marginalised sectors of society, supporting them to form women’s groups and to articulate their experiences, needs and desires through texts and photography, informed by a critical feminist consciousness of their human rights as women and as citizens.
What we do
Women’s Voices Programme
In this programme we have conducted Women’s Rights and Writing Workshops, creating safe spaces for women from all walks of life to learn about their rights and reflect on and write about their lived experiences. We have published their work in anthologies, photo books and travelling photo exhibitions. The books are distributed to women’s groups, school and community libraries and other educational institutions across the country. They are also available at bookshops in Windhoek and Swakopmund.
This programme has now been integrated into the three current programmes of the WLC in which we work with specific groups of marginalised women.
Zambezi for Women’s Rights Programme
Over the past ten years, figures from the Ministry of Health and Social Services show that almost 50% of women aged between 25 and 49 tested in Katima Mulilo, Zambezi Region, are living with HIV, and almost 25% of the younger women.
This programme of the WLC builds the leadership capacity of young women in Zambezi Region to challenge the many harmful cultural practices that entrench women’s subordinate position and expose them to all forms of violence and HIV/Aids.
Speaking for Ourselves: Voices of San Young Women
The WLC started this programme with indigenous Khwe young women living in north-east Namibia, educating them on their rights as women and as indigenous people, as well as strengthening their voice, visibility, creative expression and leadership.
We now conduct a national leadership programme with San young women, embedded in our work in various villages as well as with a group of San students in Windhoek. We are further building a regional programme that brings together San young women from Namibia, Botswana and South Africa to speak for themselves in claiming their rights as citizens of their countries and of the SADC region.
Since 2016 we have started a new project, working with San girls in four villages for the prevention of child marriage and early pregnancy / motherhood.
Building Feminist Lesbian Leadership
With this programme the WLC is reaching out to lesbian women in towns and villages across Namibia, bringing them together for national feminist leadership workshops, and supporting them to build local lesbian friendship and support groups.
Our focus is on strengthening resilience among young lesbian women to resist discrimination, violence, HIV and Aids. We utilise various forms of creative expression including writing and photography to build self-esteem and become visible and heard in Namibian society.