News and Announcement
Advanced Climate Smart Farming and Management Training for Thami Women

National Indigenous Women Forum (NIWF), with the support from MADRE, organized an Advanced Climate Smart Farming and Management Training for Thami Women in Kalinchowk Rural Municipality 9, Sundrawati, located in the Dolakha district. The program was facilitated by NIWF team and Goma Thami, president of the Thami Women Farmers Group. Shanti Khadka served as the resource person for the training. 

The primary objective of this initiative was to empower 25 Indigenous Women from the Thami Community to actively participate in collective climate justice efforts and to enhance their economic empowerment through the commercial production of vegetables.

Indigenous Women are on the frontlines of climate change's impact on agriculture. Empowering Indigenous Women with knowledge and skills in climate-smart farming is crucial for enhancing their resilience to climate change, improving their livelihoods, and ensuring food security for their Communities. It enables them to adapt to changing environmental conditions, protect and sustainably manage natural resources, and contribute to climate change mitigation efforts. Additionally, economic empowerment through climate-smart farming can lead to increased decision-making power, improved social status, and greater participation in community and policy-making processes, ultimately contributing to gender equality and social justice. 

The agricultural strategy aims to fulfil the demand for vegetables, fruits, and crops by emphasizing the importance of local (Raithane) advanced and hybrid seeds. In alignment with the long-term agricultural development plan, the goal is to achieve economic prosperity by providing farmers with information on advanced seeds, climate-friendly farming practices, modern technological products, pest management, plant growth and development, and weed control.


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Meeting with the Women and Social Affairs Committee of House of Representatives to discuss CEDAW General Recommendation No.39

National Indigenous Women Forum(NIWF), with the support of WFA, convened a discussion program with the members of the Women and Social Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives in the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration, Singha Durbar, Kathmandu Nepal on the CEDAW General Recommendation-39. 

The event was facilitated by Mr. Indra Bahadur Poudel, secretary of Women and Social Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives where as Ms. Yasso Kanti Bhattachan Vice-Chairperson of NIWF-Forum presentated a paper on CEDAW GR-39.The focus of the discussion was on CEDAW General Recommendation No. 39, which addresses the rights and issues about Indigenous Women and Girls. NIWF's Chairperson Ms. Suni Lama also spoke on the challenges faced by Indigenous Peoples. She underscored the significance of CEDAW General Recommendation No. 39 in addressing the complex and multifaceted challenges faced by Indigenous Women and Girls in Nepal. By raising awareness of these issues and advocating for their rights within the framework of international human rights standards, NIWF is playing a pivotal role in advancing gender equality and social justice for Indigenous Communities in Nepal.

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"Ecological Justice and Indigenous Identity" at the World Social Forum

The World Social Forum (WSF) is a testament for Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and grassroots movements worldwide that "Another World is Possible". Since its inception in Brazil in 2001, WSF has served as a counterpoint to the narratives of globalization promoted by events like the World Economic Forum in Davos. It has quickly become a space where diverse voices converge to advocate for social, economic, and environmental justice.

During the recent World Social Forum, the National Indigenous Women Forum (NIWF) hosted a compelling panel discussion under the theme “Ecological Justice and Indigenous Identity.” Moderated by Ms. Barsha Lekhi, this event served as a crucible for critical conversations, addressing the urgent challenges faced by Indigenous Communities in their struggle for ecological justice.
The discussions delved into various facets of the Indigenous experience, ranging from land rights and resource management to cultural preservation and climate resilience. Each topic sparked impassioned debates and illuminated perspectives, shedding light on the complexities of Indigenous struggles worldwide.

One of the central themes of the discussion was the critical role of Indigenous communities in environmental protection. Panelists showcased the efficacy of traditional knowledge in land management, highlighting its value alongside contemporary scientific approaches. This fusion of traditional wisdom with modern techniques underscores the importance of incorporating Indigenous perspectives into environmental policymaking and resource management practices.

Moreover, the panel highlighted the unique challenges faced by Indigenous women in accessing resources and asserting their rights. These challenges underscored the importance of collaboration between governments, Indigenous communities, and stakeholders. By fostering stronger partnerships, we can work towards achieving ecological justice and ensuring equitable outcomes in natural resource management.

The event at WSF was more than just a panel discussion; it was a platform for amplifying Indigenous voices and advocating for meaningful change. It emphasized the need for solidarity and mutual respect in addressing the interconnected challenges of environmental degradation, cultural preservation, and social justice.

As we reflect on the discussions and insights shared at the World Social Forum, let us commit ourselves to supporting Indigenous communities in their quest for justice and sustainability. By standing in solidarity with Indigenous peoples, we can build a more equitable and sustainable world for future generations.

Empowering Dalit and Indigenous Women and Girls in Nepal: Insights from CSW68
National Indigenous Women Forum (NIWF) and the Feminist Dalit Organization (FEDO) recently joined forces to host a  panel discussion titled "Advancing Gender Equality and Empowerment of Dalit and Indigenous Women and Girls in Nepal" during the Sixty-eighth session of the Commission on the Status of Women in New York City, United States.

The event, which convened esteemed panelists and dignitaries, including Honorable Radhika Tamang, Member of the Bagmati Provincial Assembly, and Mr. Suman Raj Aryal, General Secretary of the Ministry of Women, Children, and Senior Citizen of Nepal, aimed to shed light on the challenges faced by Dalit and Indigenous women and girls in Nepal and catalyze actionable change.

Dr. Rabina G Rasaily, Executive Director of FEDO Nepal, expertly moderated the discussion, guiding conversations among panelists Yasso Kanti Bhattachan, Vice-Chairperson of NIWF - Nepal; Durga Sob, Founder President of FEDO Nepal; Queen Bisseng, UN Programme Specialist for Africa for GFOD; and Sushmita Lama, Indigenous Women Programme Coordinator at the Asia Indigenous Peoples Pact Foundation (AIPP).

Key topics explored included advocating for policy reforms to address gender-based violence and discrimination within marginalized communities, promoting inclusive representation in decision-making processes, ensuring equitable access to resources for empowerment, and fostering collaborative partnerships to advance the Sustainable Development Goals.

The event underscored the urgent need to elevate the voices of Dalit and Indigenous women and girls, who often face intersecting forms of discrimination based on ethnicity, caste, socioeconomic status, and cultural background. By centering their perspectives in policy discussions and interventions, policymakers can develop more targeted and effective strategies to address their unique needs and challenges.

One significant challenge highlighted during the discussion is the criminalization of traditional skills and practices of Indigenous Women and Girls, leading to their displacement from ancestral lands and further marginalization within their communities. This suppression of Indigenous knowledge perpetuates cycles of poverty and disempowerment among these women and girls.

Moreover, it is crucial to recognize that women are not a homogenous group; rather, they encompass diverse experiences and identities. Acknowledging this heterogeneity is essential for designing inclusive policies and programs that cater to the specific needs of marginalized women and girls, including those from Indigenous and Dalit communities.

Despite these challenges, grassroots movements and community organizations have emerged as key actors in amplifying the voices of marginalized women and girls. By mobilizing communities and advocating for systemic change, these grassroots initiatives play a vital role in empowering Indigenous and Dalit women and girls to claim their rights and shape a more inclusive and equitable society in Nepal.

In conclusion, the panel discussion served as a beacon of hope and progress, highlighting the importance of collaborative efforts to advance gender equality and empowerment for all women and girls, particularly those from marginalized communities. By centering their voices and experiences, we can collectively work towards a future where every woman and girl in Nepal has the opportunity to thrive and realize her full potential.
Focused Group Discussion in Chautara, Sindhupalchowk: NIWF Empowering Indigenous Returnee Migrant Women

In a dedicated effort to support Indigenous Returnee Migrant Women (IRMW), the National Indigenous Women Forum (NIWF) participated in the APWLD Feminist Participatory Action Research (FPAR) initiative. As part of this project, NIWF’s Young Researcher Sabnam Lama and Field Coordinator Sanila Lama traveled to Chautara Ward no. 5, Sindhupalchowk, to conduct a transformative Focused Group Discussion (FGD) and establish an organized group of IRMW in the area.

The FGD served as a platform for the IRMW and local coordinators to engage in meaningful discussions, aiming to address critical issues faced by women reintegrating into society after foreign employment. The training focused on the 9 Principles of FPAR, ensuring that the research process is participatory, inclusive, and driven by the needs and aspirations of the IRMW community.

Moreover, the participants were educated on the principles of Free Prior Informed Consent (FPIC), confidentiality, and voluntary participation, emphasizing the importance of ethical research practices and protecting the rights and privacy of individuals.

A significant aspect of the training was equipping the IRMW with documentation skills through photos and videos. Participants learned various techniques, such as capturing portraits, landscapes, medium shots, close-up shots, long-shot, and landscape videos. This newfound ability to document their experiences and perspectives empowers the IRMW to share their stories and advocate for their needs effectively.

The FGD was conducted in two groups, each facilitated by Young Researcher Sabnam Lama and Local Coordinator Supriya Shrestha. Topics explored included the challenges and opportunities of reintegrating into society after foreign employment, the role of local government in supporting IRMW and generating safer guidelines for Potential Migrant Women.

At the conclusion of the training, an IRMW group was formally established, named “Chautara Laganshil Adiwasi Mahila Samuha,” under the facilitation of Local Coordinator Supriya Shrestha. This group holds the promise of becoming a powerful collective voice for IRMW in the region, advocating for their rights, well-being, and meaningful inclusion in society.

NIWF’s commitment to the APWLD Feminist Participatory Action Research initiative exemplifies its dedication to empowering Indigenous women and supporting their journeys as returnee migrant workers. Through research, documentation, and community engagement, NIWF aims to foster positive change and create an environment where the voices and experiences of IRMW are heard, valued, and acted upon.

2024-02-13 17:04:10
Assessing Nepal’s Progress on Human Rights: NIWF and Mukta Kamalari Bikash Manch Collaborate with Mama Cash Fund

With the invaluable support of the Mama Cash Fund, the National Indigenous Women Forum (NIWF) and the Mukta Kamalari Bikash Manch (Dang) joined forces for a crucial Assessment of Nepal’s Implementation of the 3rd Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Recommendations. The assessment delved into critical issues encompassing climate change and gender equality, trafficking, bonded labor, women’s inclusion and participation, and the rights of indigenous peoples.

The Mid-Term Assessment for the UPR was presented by Professor Hom Prasad Yamphu Rai, a respected lecturer in Anthropology at Tribhuvan University. NIWF’s Vice Chairperson, Yasso Kanti Bhattachan, skillfully moderated the Open Floor Discussion during the assessment.

The collaboration between NIWF and Mukta Kamalari Bikash Manch, with the support of Mama Cash, underscores the importance of collective efforts in promoting human rights and addressing pressing social challenges. The valuable insights and contributions of all the representatives involved have enriched the discussion on the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Recommendations.

NIWF extends its heartfelt appreciation to Mama Cash for their support, Mukta Kamalari Bikash Manch for their valuable partnership, and all the representatives for their unwavering commitment to advancing human rights in Nepal. The collaborative endeavor demonstrates the power of partnerships and collective action in shaping a more inclusive and equitable future for all.

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2024-02-13 17:02:41
Celebrating Unity: Inside the Vibrant National Conference for Indigenous Women’s Rights Day-1

On 12th July 2023: The momentous occasion unfolded as the National Conference on “Indigenous Women’s Rights and Leadership at the Policy Level” commenced its journey. With great honor, we welcomed Federal and Provincial Level Representatives from all over Nepal.

A brief but meaningful Puja ceremony was initiated, led by Vice-Chair, Yasso Kanti Bhattachan, as participants collectively invoked blessings for the success of the conference.

Resource persons, and experts in their respective fields, delivered thought-provoking speeches on the significant themes of the conference, including the Right to Self-Determination and Effective Tools to Safeguard the Rights of Indigenous Women.

Amidst the busy schedule, moments of respite emerged, allowing participants to engage in heartfelt conversations, and bond over refreshing tea, delectable snacks, and nourishing meals. As the sun descended, the day saw a colorful ending with “Solidarity Night.” It was an enchanting celebration, a jubilant tapestry of colors, music, and dance that embodied the unity and indomitable spirit of all Indigenous Communities.

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2024-02-13 17:01:37
NIWF Vice- Chair attends the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues Twenty-second Session: 17-28 April 2023. Division for Inclusive Social Development (DISD)

Vice-Chairperson to NIWF Yasso Kanti Bhattachan, is currently attending the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues Twenty-second Session: 17-28 April 2023. Division for Inclusive Social Development (DISD). 

April 16, 2023, the opening prayers were performed by the NIWF Vice-Chairperson at the Rosa Luxembourg office in the traditional Thakali direction with the delegates from Sudan, Panama, Philippines, USA,MADRE, and the RLS team.

With S. James Anaya, an internationally recognized scholar, and author in the areas of international human rights and issues concerning indigenous peoples.

With Former Chair of Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), Glaydias Acosta.

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2024-02-13 17:00:15
National Conference on Indigenous Women’s Rights and Leadership: Highlights from Day-2

13th July, unveiled a cornucopia of activities that captivated our hearts and minds. From the exploration of the Position Paper to thought-provoking discussions on consequential subjects, and culminating with the unveiling of our book by the esteemed Vice-President, our plates were brimming with intellectual nourishment.

With the aroma of a delightful morning meal still lingering, we eagerly gathered at the conference venue, where our revered resource persons eagerly awaited the arrival of our honorable guests. The richness of our Mother Tongue, the significance of the Convention on Biodiversity (CBD), the invaluable role of Indigenous Peoples (IPs) and Indigenous Women in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and the transformative Paris Agreement of 2016 were just a few among the many captivating topics that ignited passionate discussions. In these exchanges, knowledge flourished, and profound understanding bloomed.

However, the crescendo of the day, the apex of our collective journey, arrived with the soft launch of a precious tome entitled “Elected Women Representatives of Federal, Provincial, and Local Level 2029.” This remarkable moment unfolded beneath the watchful gaze of the Vice-President, Ram Sahaya Yadav, whose presence bestowed a halo of distinction upon the occasion.

As the pages of the book unfurled, it became a tangible embodiment of honor, paying homage to the tireless dedication and extraordinary achievements of the elected women representatives. It left us enriched, both in knowledge and in spirit. With profound insights etched into our consciousness and a deep sense of unity forged through shared conversations, the National Conference on Indigenous Women’s Rights and Leadership at the Policy Level continued to sow the seeds of empowerment and change.

2024-02-13 16:58:26