Women's role

South African female peacekeepers on mission in Africa : Progress, challenges and policy options for increased participation

Upphovsperson: Schoeman, Maxi
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet, Conflict, Displacement and Transformation | Uppsala : Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 2010
Ämnesord: South Africa, South Africa National Defence Force, Peace corps, Peacekeeping, women's participation, Women's rights, gender equality, Women's role, women's status, Peace and conflict research, Freds- och konfliktforskning
South Africa’s contribution of troops to peace missions is the 13th largest in the world, and the country has the largest women’s contingent deployed in Peace Support Operations (PSOs). Although, South Africa is one of only a handful of countries incorporating women in combat positions and PSOs, on average the picture of female participation remains less rosy.On the policy level, South Africa has committed itself to gender mainstreaming in the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) in line with UN Security Council Resolution 1325 (2000). The UN Resolution on Women, Peace and Security calls for, among other things, full inclusion of women in all aspects of peace-related activities, including peacekeeping. On 31 October2010, the world will mark the 10th anniversary of Resolution 1325, just as in 2009 South Africa celebrated ten years of participation in international peacekeeping operations. This is a pertinent time to take stock of South Africa’s progress in improving the gender balance in its military, specifically in its contribution to PSOs, and the opportunities and obstacles that exist in this process.This Policy Note is based on information collected from questionnaires, interviews and reports, along with insights gleaned from discussion groups at the 2007 SANDF Women’s Day Conference to identify the progress of, and challenges to the SANDF in improving the gender balance in its peacekeeping activities. These initial research findings form part of a larger project on South African involvement in peacekeeping, focusing in particular on the status, position and role of women decision-makers and peacekeepers. Problems encountered by women peacekeepers and the challenges faced by the SANDF are not unique and the recommendations may therefore be of relevance beyond South Africa, particularly to those African countries across the continent attempting to attract more women into, and mainstream gender in the military and PSOs.

As Angolanas

Upphovsperson: Lagerström, Birgitta
Utgivare: Nordiska Afrikainstitutet
År: 2009
Ämnesord: Angola, Women, Women's role, Social work, Socialt arbete
The first time that I met Angolan women was in 1976 when Ruth Neto and Maria Mambo Café visited Stockholm, gathered by Svenska Kvinnors Vänsterförbund (Women’s Association of the Swedish Left, SKV). In 1978 I received a journalism scholarship by SIDA (Swedish International Development Agency) and spent six weeks in Angola to get acquainted to know the Organization of Angolan Women (OMA, Organizacão de Mulher Angolana). I travelled to Huambo with two OMA officials: Irene Neto, (sister of the first president of the Angolan republic, Augustinho Neto) and Luisa Chongolola. The visit to Angola resulted in a book, jointly written with Hillevi Nilsson of AGIS (The Africa Groups of Sweden) published in Swedish, about the OMA in the form of written testimonies about the role of the Angolan woman. I returned to Angola invited to a congress of the OMA in 1983, and later, in 1990, to work in Luanda for the OMA until 1993. I made joint articles with Idalinda Rodrigues who at that time was an employee of the OMA. Helena Cunha acted as consultant regarding portuguese language. All the articles have been published/appeared in the Jornal de Angola. The photographer Cinquenta of the Jornal de Angola also helped me get to know Luanda well. We tried publishing a book in 1992, but this was not possible due to the reemergence of war in Luanda in the end of October of that year. The texts were written between 1979 and 1992, and AGIS added a chapter in 2006.