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The aim of the local humanitarian leadership (LHL) movement is to shift power and resources to governments and civil society in crisis-affected countries so they are able to take the lead in emergencies. Crucial to improving the effectiveness of locally and internationally led efforts is the expansion and recognition of women’s leadership in local humanitarian spaces. Women and girls experience heightened vulnerability in emergencies, but often their leadership, knowledge, and skills are not recognized and their gender-specific needs are not adequately addressed. Advocating for and supporting women and women’s organizations to play key leadership roles in humanitarian settings—helping them find the strength, voice, and space they need—must be an overarching goal of the LHL agenda because upholding the rights of women is fundamental to effective humanitarian action.
This panel seeks to present a mix of local, national, and international voices. Based on their own experiences, the local and national women leaders will discuss
a) the importance and impact of having women’s voices present in leadership spaces in the humanitarian sector;
b) the extent of women’s leadership in the sector; and
c) success stories of impactful women’s leadership in humanitarian action, the challenges, and how they have overcome those challenges.