Great new website on women and extractives in Africa
WoMin website already boasts a wealth of material
If you are remotely interested in women and the extractive industries in Africa then you should take a look at the newly-launched website of WoMin – African Women Unite Against Destructive Resource Extraction.
The website was only launched on February 5th but it already contains an unrivalled wealth of resources related to the extractives industries and extractivism, their impacts upon peasant and working class women in Africa, and post-extractivist women-centred African alternatives to the current destructive development model.
On the website, you can find WoMin’s six major research papers on themes related to women, gender and extractivism; an extensive library of over 240 references to the work of WoMin; all the papers, presentations, report and documentation from the launch of WoMin in October 2013; and information related to WoMin’s participatory action research efforts in 12 countries in 2014.
Established in 2013, WoMin is a regional project that focuses on issues related to women, gender and extractivism and is an initiative of the International Alliance on Natural Resources in Africa (IANRA). The project provides a platform of solidarity and co-operation involving civil society organisations and movements working on or with an interest in extractivism and women's rights in Africa.
Extractivism is a deeply exploitative and ecologically destructive model of development, characterised by the large scale extraction and exploitation of natural resources such as oil, water, minerals, and forests, around which the economy, social relations of class and gender, state policy and public discourse are organised.
The project aims to build knowledge and awareness, support community organising, and campaign against corporations that violate women's human rights. The project advocates for the reform of national, sub-regional and regional law, policy and systems to protect communities and women, in particular, from the destructive impacts of extractives.
“We believe that the current extractivist development model is damaging to women, their communities, eco-systems and the planet,” said Samantha Hargreaves. “Our long-term goal at WoMin is to imagine, cultivate and campaign with progressive friends and allies for alternatives to destructive extractivism.”
After a highly successful one-year exploratory phase of work, WoMin has developed a longer-term (three-year) regional programme to address the agreements and propositions emerging from the WoMin launch and regional meeting in October 2013. The programme and detailed action plan for 2014 are designed around six elements – Participatory Action Research (PAR) in twelve countries; feminist train-the-trainer political education and organising schools at sub-regional level; campaigning against corporates; building the post-extractivist alternative model; advocating for transformative (non-reformist) reforms; and research collaborations with universities and research institutes.
It is still early days for WoMin and its new website but it has already made itself into an invaluable resource for people interested in - and working on – women, gender and the extractives. But don’t believe me, go and have a look for yourselves.