Women Delegates Fund

Climate change is the most urgent challenge of the 21st century, and women are responding. Their experiences and perspectives are integral to solutions and must be represented at all levels of decision making. Yet gender inequities continue to challenge women’s full participation, particularly in power and decision making spheres.

Established in 2009 with support of the Government of Finland as a project of the Global Gender and Climate Alliance (GGCA) and in partnership with UNDP, WEDO administers the Women Delegates Fund (WDF), which provides support to women delegates from developing countries, and specifically least developed countries, to participate in the global climate change negotiations at the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change). Recently, the Government of Iceland has provided additional support to enhance the scope of the WDF.

Since its inception, the WDF has evolved from a travel fund to an in-depth leadership program for a group of core participants. The Fund has allowed for targeted capacity-building in a range of areas from advocacy techniques to media skills, created a strong network of female delegates, and provided economic support. The effects of the WDF are already being felt; more than twenty-five women delegates who were previously unable to attend UNFCCC meetings have participated effectively, and initiatives and networking led by WDF participants contributed to the groundbreaking eight references to the links between gender and climate change in the Cancun Agreements at the COP16. As one delegate said: “The WDF makes us ambassadors for women across all areas of negotiations. Other countries now want to increase the women on their delegations and, even just by being in the room, we are helping to ensure that gender remains in the language of the text.”

Through the WDF and other initiatives, WEDO is committed to the consistent and increased participation of women across all levels of negotiations at the UNFCCC.

The Latest Women Delegates Fund News

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Strengthening Women’s Participation through Networking & Capacity Building- COP19 WDF Night School

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

WARSAW (November 14, 2013) – Last weekend, 20 female climate change negotiators completed a three nights training with the Women Delegates Fund (WDF) – a program to support and enhance the participation of women delegates in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process, funded by the governments of Iceland and Finland, and administrated by WEDO.

The WDF Night School was held in Warsaw, Poland on November 8th-10th, right before the start …

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UNFCCC Women Delegates Networking Reception – Recap and Photos

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

BONN, GERMANY (June 11, 2013)-- Yesterday, in partnership with UN Women and WEDO on behalf of the Women Delegates Fund, the Governments of Liberia and Bangladesh hosted an informal cocktail reception and networking meeting for women delegates at the UNFCCC. The event was held in light of the COP18 Decision 23/CP.18 – ‘Promoting gender balance and improving the participation of women in UNFCCC negotiations and in the representation of Parties in bodies established pursuant to the …

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Report on Women’s Participation in the UNFCCC

Friday, December 14th, 2012

New York, New York (December 14, 2012)– Especially in light of COP18 agreeing a new decision on promoting women’s participation in the UNFCCC, WEDO is proud to release its latest report highlighting statistics on women’s participation in the climate change process. This new reports looks in depth at women’s participation in the UNFCCC over the last 5 years, graphically portraying data on the overall percentage of women on national delegations, as Heads of Delegations and on …

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Women in Diplomacy – an Online Discussion Forum (Registration deadline, 17 October)

Friday, October 12th, 2012

[ October 22, 2012 to November 6, 2012. ]

NEW YORK (October 12, 2012)– From October 22nd 2012 to November 6th 2012, (Registration deadline, 17 October) WEDO is very pleased to partner with the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), in collaboration with the Directorate of Energy & Climate Change, the United Arab Emirates Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), and the Global Gender and Climate Alliance (GGCA), in co-hosting an online …

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New Statistics on Women’s Participation at the UNFCCC

Sunday, September 23rd, 2012

NEW YORK (September 23, 2012)– In monitoring WEDO’s work on women’s leadership and participation at the UNFCCC, we are pleased to provide the most recent 2011 & 2012 overall statistics on women as percentage of national delegations and women as heads of delegations. As we have not yet had COP18, the 2012 statistics are incomplete and final stats will be released during COP18.

Current numbers show that women’s participation in this process has increased both at …

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