In 2021, the Philippines was identified as
the deadliest country in Asia and third in the world for environmental
defenders, with women facing unique vulnerabilities and even graver threats. In
the face of continued extractive human activities that have devastating
environmental impacts, along with the persistent feminization of the burden of
managing natural resources for a household's survival, the WEDefend (Women
Environmental Defenders) Project will advance women's leadership through
innovative and direct support that empowers and capacitates the women
environmental defenders (WEDs).
The complete project name is “Strengthening
WEDefenders towards a Resilient and Inclusive Natural Resources Governance” (or
“SWING”) project and is being supported by The Asia Foundation (TAF).
The project will be implemented by the island-wide
- Luzon = SALIGAN Bicol, Tanggol
Kalikasan, and Environmental Legal Assistance Center (ELAC)
- Visayas = Philippine Earth
Justice Center (PEJC), PROCESS Panay, and KAISAHAN Negros
- Mindanao = BALAOD Mindanaw and
LRC (Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center)
The Objectives of the project include:
- Equip WEDs and civil society
organizations (CSOs) with the necessary skills to conduct their work safely and
effectively and influence policies without threats of violence.
- Improve access to justice of
WEDs who face violence, abuse, or harassment.
- Advance women's leadership and
advocacy on local and national priorities related to natural resources and the
- Strengthen public and
institutional knowledge of technical environmental information.
The project components include:
- Building a multi-sectoral
coalition of WEDs
- Embarking on capacity-building
program for WEDs
- Provision of Psycho-Social
Support (PSS) for WEDs
- Legal Defense Fund for WEDs
- Launch campaigns for WEDs