Vital Voices (2022)

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Heinrich Boell Foundation Yerevan Office-South Caucasus Region in cooperation with “Women’s Rights House (WRH)” NGO launches a new project “Vital Voices: Podcast series with women political leaders creating change in Armenia”.

The goal of the project is to actively engage women and members of marginalized groups across Armenia in political processes. It should be noticed that although women actively participated in the 2018 Velvet Revolution, they still do not hold greater political power. 30% quota system ensures that women are represented in political parties, such that 34 of the 107 deputies are women, yet they face distinct barriers to entering politics at the local and national levels. There are numerous challenges that continue to limit women’s societal and political participation, including but not limited to a lack of affirmative measures or engagement of political parties to advance women and stereotypical attitudes on the roles of women and men. Consequently, women–especially marginalized women–are largely left out of the political arena and have very little influence over policy decisions.

Thus, women who have managed to make an entry into politics have a unique insight and role to play. They can support and encourage women and other members of marginalized groups to become actively engaged in democratic processes as well as advocate on their behalf to amplify their voices.

The project will be a platform for women political actors to engage with other young women and members of marginalized groups. For this purpose, a series of podcasts with women political leaders and civil society experts in Armenia on a variety of relevant and timely topics will be produced. The themes covered in podcast discussions will be both timely and relevant. Moreover, interviewees’ personal stories and their trajectory into politics will serve to spark interest in listeners and encourage their own political participation.