EWI is a Croatian non-profit women’s organisation formed in 2007 which seeks to support and promote women’s active engagement as change-makers in both faith communities and society at large. EWI focuses on women’s engagement in promoting women’s rights, peacebuilding & reconciliation and faith-based ecumenical & inter-religious cooperation.
The EWI itself grew from the World Council of Churches’ (WCC) programme the Ecumenical Women’s Solidarity Fund (EWSF) which was an initiative of the WCC Women’s Desk. During the period 1993-2007 the EWSF offered tangible support to women victims of war in ex-Yugoslavia through small focused grants. Building on this experience and the positive evaluation of a regionally positioned, indigenous mechanism which enabled a flexible and culturally sensitive source of support for women, the WCC programme was closed and the EWI launched.
The EWI was founded by a group of 5 individuals who themselves benefited directly from EWSF support and who together shared a vision which has become the EWI.
Ecumenical Women’s Initiative (EWI) is a non-governmental, non-profit making organisation which supports women as initiators and agents of change in faith communities and in society by supporting and connecting individuals and groups working in the fields of women’s rights, peace building and reconciliation, belief-based ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue & cooperation in Bosnia & Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia, encouraging networking and cross border cooperation.
The EWI strives for a just and peaceful society in which diversity is a strength and source of creativity, in which women have a dignified place and role in private and public life in harmony with their competence and personal choice and in which religion promotes and supports the achievement of full equality between women and men.
The EWI seeks to shape its work, approaches and relationships according to the following set of values:
Equality: they believe that God created all people equal and that women and men have the right to equal opportunities regardless of their nationality, ethnic affiliation or religious belief, gender or sex or any other characteristic.
Solidarity: they stand primarily alongside all women in their current situation of injustice as they strive to contribute to a just and peaceful society.
Pluralism: they respect culture and custom, ethnic, religious and national diversity.
Non-violence: they promote the affirmation of their values and respect of others as a precondition to peaceful coexistence and the constructive transformation of conflict.