The International Federation of Business and Professional Women Factsheet
- Founded in 1930
- Founding member of WfWP
- Mission: To develop professional and leadership potential for women at all levels and ensure equal participation of women and men in power and decision-making roles
- Focus area: Global
- Level: International, national, local
- Main themes: Social Equity, Women Economic Empowerment, Gender Equality, Sustainable Development
BPW International has become one of the most influential international networks of business and professional women with affiliates in 95 countries on five continents. The root of BPW’s advocacy is embedded in the work with the United Nations. BPW lobbied for the formation of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) and supports many women’s issues.
BPW is actively lobbying at CSW and the World Water Forum and initiatives such as the EU Water Initiative. By forming women & gender coalitions and co-organising preparatory meetings and workshops (World Water Forum 5, Istanbul 2009 and World Water Forum 6 and 7) BPWI ensures women are included in decision-making and policies.
Furthermore, BPWI members excerpt influence via their roles in task forces, working groups and other governing bodies– i.e. as NGO representative to the European Union Water Initiative coordinating committee and acting as Co-Coordinator European NGO Water Network.
Lobbying for Water Rights
BPW Ecuador is involved in lobby groups regarding preventing (government un-controlled) privatization of water sources and gave input to the Constitutional Committee of Ecuador on right to water, protection of water sources. An article was adopted in the new Constitution on the protection of natural resources including water. They follow up the implementation. Strategies and lessons learnt are shared within the BPWI network.
BPW Moldova is involved in the activities around the implementation of the Water & Health protocol. This project is supported by the Dutch Government, SDC and Women for Water Partnership (WfWP). In the village Horodiste, the project on public water supply and household waste recovery was conducted. Local water quality is poor due to excessive concentration of fluorine. Residents were trained on the harmful influence of chaotically thrown garbage on water quality. The population, especially women, were informed how to collect household waste and evacuate them for recycling. Simultaneously, local inhabitants were made aware of the importance of measures to prevent environmental pollution and underground water, which is the source of drinking water. A similar project was initiated by BPWI and started in the second half of 2009 in the Ukraine.
The "Plant a Tree and Pick-a Diamond" project was first presented at the BPW congress in 1992, Nagoya. Since then, BPW International has been actively developing and participating in the "Tree of Life" project to encourage planting trees globally to restore environmental quality. BPW Brazil started a tree-planting project to enhance the water management in cities. This project is supported by local government and still running and expanding to other areas.
For more information visit the BPWI website: bpw-international.org