The United Nations Women Sierra Leone (UN Women SL) has concluded discussions with women in the northwest and eastern regions of the country to gather their experiences before, during, and after the recent general elections.

The discussions were conducted with support from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Sierra Leone’s elections basket fund and in partnership with Send Sierra Leone. The aim of the discussions was to understand the challenges and opportunities faced by women in participating in the electoral process, and to identify areas where UN Women SL can provide support.

During the discussions, women shared their experiences of voter registration, access to information about the elections, security during the voting process, and the challenges they faced in participating in the political process. They also spoke about their hopes for the future and their desire to be more involved in decision-making at all levels.

“The discussions with women in Sierra Leone were very insightful,” said Fatoumata Ndow, UN Women SL Country Representative. “We heard from women from a variety of backgrounds and experiences, and we were able to identify common themes and challenges. This information will help us to develop targeted interventions to support women’s participation in the political process.”

In addition to the discussions with women, UN Women SL has also engaged with the managing director of the Lift Above Poverty Organisation (LAPO) to discuss ways to collaborate on advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment. The two organizations have agreed to explore avenues for partnership within the framework of the FeedSaone initiative, which aims to improve food security and nutrition for women and girls in Sierra Leone.

“We are committed to working with women’s organizations to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment in Sierra Leone,” said Ndow. “We believe that the FeedSaone initiative is a valuable opportunity to reach women and girls who are particularly vulnerable, and we are excited to partner with LAPO to make a positive impact.”