She's got

the power

More than half of the world’s population consists of women and girls. Yet we mainly see men in influential positions. Only 18 percent of all ministers worldwide are women, and less than a quarter of the seats in national parliaments are occupied by women.

Hivos believes this needs to change. That is why we support strong and courageous women to occupy positions from which they can work towards an equal society. To celebrate International Women's Day, Hivos is featuring twenty women leaders from five countries where we work in a photo exhibition in the Atrium of The Hague City Hall. Below you will find one each from Lebanon, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Jordan.

Fight for equality

These women have been elected as members of parliament, city councilors, as trade union directors or leaders of their organizations. They have not been held back by prejudice and intimidation. They have persisted and are now able to fight for equality from within. The following applies to each of them: She’s got the power!

Laury Haytayan

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Laury Haytayan (Beirut, Libanon) is MENA Director Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI) and a former journalist

“I am a human being who has dreams, and I want to realize them regardless of my gender.” Laury Haytayan is a Lebanese oil and gas expert working in the Middle East and North Africa. In this position, she wants to influence national development and peace building in Lebanon. She hopes her example will inspire other young women in Lebanon to bring about change. “I want to be part of the new Lebanon we’re trying to build.”

Sikhululekile Moyo

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Sikhululekile Moyo (Bulawayo, Zimbabwe) is councilor in Bulawayo 

Sikhululekile wants to be a role model for other women in Bulawayo. She wants to show that women can do this even better than men. In her work, she focuses on increasing the representation of young people and women in the daily affairs of the municipality.

Doris Chilese

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Doris Chilese (Lusaka, Zambia) is area councilor

Doris sees herself as a woman who contributes to national development by participating in all facets of leadership. “My wish for other women is that they stand up and believe in themselves. They must realize that we’re all created equal; the only difference is our sex." 

Kefase Chisi

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Kefase Chisi (Mzimba, Malawi) is councilor of Mzimba

Kefase encourages other women to pursue leadership positions and encourages girls to finish their education. “They are the leaders of tomorrow.” She has been elected councilor three times in a row in her municipality. “In 2024, I want to be a Member of Parliament.”

Rabeea Ahmed Raja

Husam Aldeen

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Rabeea Ahmed Raja usam Aldeen (Ma’an, Jordan) is member in Ma’an municipality and a retired teacher

Rabeea became a municipal councilor through elections. “My goal is to change my community so women can participate in decision-making. I also dream of an equal society where the number of women in the Chamber of Deputies is the same as the number of men, and this through elections – not a quota system.”

Pictured in the heading of this article: Hazvinei Marika, vice chairwoman in Harare, Zimbabwe. Hazvinei feels empowered in the position of vice chairwoman: “I can now defend my rights and those of other women in my branch.” She dreams of becoming president of the union and teaching others to be as brave as she is.

Women Empowered for Leadership

Hivos' Women Empowered for Leadership (WE4L) program uses a combination of advocacy, skills training, knowledge tools and coalition-building. The program works directly with potential women leaders, as well as with political parties, trade unions, civil society organization, the media and the creative sector. Hivos and our local partners provide strategic, media and communication expertise.