Our mission is to identify, invest in and bring visibility to extraordinary women around the world by unleashing their leadership potential to transform lives and accelerate peace and prosperity in their communities.
Vital Voices Global Partnership is the preeminent non-governmental organization (NGO) that identifies, trains and empowers emerging women leaders and social entrepreneurs around the globe, enabling them to create a better world for us all.
-We are at the forefront of international coalitions to combat human trafficking and other forms of violence against women and girls.
-We enable women to become change agents in their governments, advocates for social justice, and supporters of democracy and the rule of law.
-We equip women with management, business development, marketing, and communications skills to expand their enterprises, help to provide for their families, and create jobs in their communities.
Our international staff and team of over 1,000 partners, pro bono experts and leaders, including senior government, corporate and NGO executives, have trained and mentored more than 8,000 emerging women leaders from over 127 countries in Africa, Asia, Eurasia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the Middle East since 1997. These women have returned home to train and mentor more than 500,000 additional women and girls in their communities. They are the Vital Voices of our time.
WHAT WE DO
Every day, women around the world are subjected to violence in its many forms: human trafficking, domestic violence, sexual violence, and harmful traditional practices. As long as violence against women persists, women’s human rights are restricted. Our human rights work centers around three goals:
-Raise issues of concern through international public awareness campaigns
-Collaborate with civil society, government and business to address violence through a multi-stakeholder approach
-Promote effective policies by connecting practitioners and policymakers to ensure the full protection of women’s rights
By advancing the full implementation of laws, increasing public awareness and supporting the sustainability of victims’ support services, we contribute to the creation of a world where women are free from violence.
Initiative to Combat Human Trafficking
Cameroon Initiative to Combat Human Trafficking
As a major source, transit and destination country for human trafficking, Cameroon is widely recognized as a hub for the modern-day slave trade. Our program focuses on strengthening the criminal justice system’s response to trafficking and improving victim services.
By working closely with criminal justice personnel, we facilitate collaboration among prosecutors, law enforcement, victim advocates, service providers and other allied professionals. To broaden our reach, we also engage partners at the U.S. Department of State, AEquitas, a technical assistance and training provider for prosecutors who work on issues of violence against women, and Vital Voices network members in Cameroon.
Global Partnership to End Violence Against Women
In collaboration with the Avon Foundation and the U.S. Department of State, we launched the Global Partnership to End Violence Against Women on International Women’s Day in March 2010. Experts from diverse sectors — business, government, law enforcement, media, academia and the NGO community — joined the partnership as representatives from 15 countries where violence against women is a pressing challenge.
Committed to developing and sharing innovative solutions, members are creating lasting public-private partnerships to advance a global action plan to end gender-based violence.
Vital Voices Global Partnership recognizes the direct correlation between investment in women and girls and poverty alleviation, a lessening of government corruption, and greater general prosperity. We invest in leadership and skills training for entrepreneurs and leaders in business because women are powerful engines of economic growth and social change.
Vital Voices is expanding its regional businesswomen’s networks on a global scale to strengthen women’s roles in expanding their economies and creating positive change in their communities.
Our successful track record with two regional networks — the MENA Businesswomen’s Network and the Africa Businesswomen’s Network — is paving the way for a piloted third network in the Latin America and the Caribbean, with expansion soon to follow in Asia.
Vital Voices Global Businesswomen’s Network, linking local women’s business associations and Vital Voices chapters, will build a world-wide channel for businesswomen to connect for a variety of purposes, including business-to-business activities and local and regional advocacy campaigns.
Entrepreneurs in Handicrafts
The Entrepreneur Leadership and Business Development Program: Handcraft Sector (Entrepreneurs in Handcrafts) is an innovative Vital Voices program for extraordinary women business leaders who manage small-to-medium size enterprises in the creative industry. These women focus on advancing their businesses to make positive change in their communities.
Through training and mentoring, the program aims to:
-Develop and strengthen the leadership skills of women entrepreneurs
-Build their capacity as businesswomen and owners of SMEs
-Improve the economic status of women entrepreneurs, their employees and the community
Since 2006, the FORTUNE/U.S. State Department Global Women’s Mentoring Partnership has drawn upon the knowledge and expertise of America’s most accomplished leaders to empower aspiring women professionals across the globe. Partnering with the FORTUNE Most Powerful Women Summit and the U.S. State Department, each year Vital Voices facilitates a month-long mentorship program in the United States for international businesswomen, featuring a mentorship assignment with one of FORTUNE’s Most Powerful Women.
The program begins with an orientation in Washington, D.C., where mentees interface with women leaders in government, business, academic, civil society and the media. Participants then relocate to the offices of a top American female executive for an onsite mentorship assignment, in which each woman shadows their mentor and learns from the best practices of their host company. At the end of the mentorship, mentees reconvene in New York City to collectively reflect on their experience and discuss the future trajectory of their leadership path.
Alumnae of this program, representing 44 countries to date, return home inspired to use the knowledge and experiences they gained throughout the program to “pay it forward” in their home countries. These women become valued members of the Vital Voices Leadership network, engaging in Vital Voices businesswomen’s networks and chapters. Moreover, alumnae consistently leverage these networks and others to initiate their own mentoring events and programs, through which they share the resources and insights gained from their mentoring experience.
From national parliaments to local councils, women are underrepresented in policy-making around the world. Their global share in government representation stands at just 19 percent compared to that of men. Without a seat at the table, women don’t have a say in crafting legislation, negotiating peace talks or shaping agendas for future reform.
A growing body of research is finding that women’s increased presence in politics corresponds with greater transparency and more attention paid to education reforms, social development and achieving gender equality across all sectors. We believe that the equitable representation of women in politics can contribute to a more peaceful and prosperous world, which is why we work with parliamentarians and civil society advocates who are making their voices heard in the political sphere.
Where is Vital Voices Global Partnership