Feminism, Religion and Interreligious Dialogue Webinar October 15, 2019

Learning Hubs






About JLI

An international collaboration on evidence for faith actors’ activities, contributions, and challenges to achieving humanitarian and development goals. Founded in 2012, JLI came together with a single shared conviction: there is an urgent need to build our collective understanding, through evidence, of faith actors in humanitarianism and development.

On October 15, 2019, KAICIID and the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities hosted a webinar on Feminism, Religion and Interreligious Dialogue.

Lucy Gardner, JLI Gender-Based Violence Learning Hub Coordinator, moderated the webinar


Dr. Iman Bibars: Regional Director – Ashoka Arab World, Vice President – Ashoka Global

  • Presentation: Systems Change for Women Empowerment [6.06 -21.50]

Dr. Iman Bibars spoke on empowering women means ensuring women have the ability to choose and become independent, active citizens. However, as there are many systems of oppression working to prevent women’s’ ability to be independent, we must work at the system-level to effect lasting change. Systems-changing initiatives led from within can be effective in advancing women’s’ rights, especially within religious systems. Leveraging religious discourse is important to furthering gender equality, especially in Egypt. Several Ashoka fellows are working within religious systems to create new interpretations of religious teachings that are more compatible with gender equality and the current socioeconomic realities. Ashoka is working to highlight and support these fellows through our new global initiative WISE. Through WISE, we are also working to change the system of defining success in social impact from a gender perspective, and redefining what it means to scale an initiative, empowering women to communicate their successes in a more equitable way. In addition, WISE is working to clearly identify gender-specific challenges faced by women social entrepreneurs globally.

Fatima Saeed, Researcher and Development Practitioner, COFEM

  • Presentation: Who is COFEM [22:30 -36:25]

Fatima spoke on the creation and sustenance of feminist movements to improve gender equality and address GBV and their intersection with religious movements as well as the backlash to feminist movement building and the role that religious communities play in generating and countering the various forms of backlash. She drew on specific examples from the women’s movement in Pakistan to illustrate how feminists and religious groups have often been at odds with each throughout the country’s history.


View the JLI GBV Hub Webinar series