Young Women’s Development Groups in Chechnya

In September 2012, Peacebuilding UK and nine local NGO partners in Chechnya began a new project ‘Young Women’s Development Groups’ to support vulnerable and marginalised young women in Chechnya. Peacebuilding UK and partners had previously been working to develop and fundraise for this project over the last 2 years. The first cohort of groups has now been successfully completed, and a new cohort began in January.

The project provides training to 22 social workers from the 9 Chechen NGOs, who are being supported in implementing the following activities:

– Providing 1,600 vulnerable girls and young women (aged 11-17) in Chechnya with an extracurricular course on life-skills, confidence-building, personal development, health, human rights, and economic independence over two years;

– Providing 1,600 vulnerable girls with access to individual psycho-social counselling, health and educational support.

A curriculum based on international best practices in girls’ and young women’s social work was developed by Peacebuilding UK trainers together with leaders of the nine NGOs and 22 prospective social workers at a one-week workshop arranged by Peacebuilding UK in Nalchik from 31st May to 6th June.

The project aims to empower girls and young women in the Chechen Republic, enabling them to contribute to their communities’ social and economic development, increasing levels of education, reducing poverty and promoting gender equality. The project will also strive to strengthen Chechen civil society and expand its role in community development through improving the technical and professional capacities of the 9 key local women’s, youth and human rights NGOs. The project will help to build a movement of women’s NGOs with strengthened links and shared objectives, institutionalising sustained and comprehensive collaboration and coordination between them and providing experience in working together to further their common goals.