The Award winners at the Second GNWS Conference in Washington DC, 2012

Organising the Third World Conference on Women’s Shelters

Global Network of Women’s Shelters (GNWS) is the international organisation that coordinates contacts between workers and institutions in the field of women’s shelters. GNWS has organised two international conferences. The Third Conference will be held in The Hague, The Netherlands, in November 2015. Some two thousand participants from eighty countries are expected, including world-renowned speakers. The conference will enable participants to share experiences and exchange information about new approaches. It will allow for the preparation of formal and informal international collaboration initiatives. Last but not least, the previous conferences have created enormous inspiration and energy; they were a boost to women who are counteracting violence in the most difficult of circumstances.

Together with its partners, DIWA was assigned the task to start the preparations for this conference, the organisational and financial structure and the first draft of the programme. The Dutch government has financed this preparatory stage and strongly supports the conference; five ministries have formed a coordination team to give further assistance. The preparatory stage ended in September 2014, after which the permanent team took over (