World YWCA

The World YWCA advocates for peace, justice, human rights and care for the environment and has been at the forefront of raising the status of women for more than a century. The World YWCA develops women’s leadership to find local solutions to the global inequalities women face. Each year, it reaches more than 25 million women and girls through work in over 22,000 communities. Through advocacy, training and development the World YWCA empowers women, including young women, to lead social change.

This grassroots development experience shapes the organisation’s global advocacy agenda. The World YWCA work is inspired by Christian principles and a commitment to women’s full and equal participation in society. It is a volunteer membership movement inclusive of women from many faiths, backgrounds, and cultures. The World YWCA affirms that women’s human rights are universal, indivisible, interdependent and interrelated.

A human rights framework and the Millennium Development Goals guide the YWCA advocacy and services, which seek to empower women and girls and bring practical experience from the community level to national, regional and international policy makers. The movement is also guided in its work by the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), the Beijing Platform for Action, the Declaration of Commitment on HIV and AIDS, as well as the agenda of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD).

The World YWCA works in collaboration with many partner organisations and networks to advance its advocacy and programme work, including women’s networks, ecumenical, youth and international organisations, and UN agencies operating with women and young women.

The vision of the World YWCA is a fully inclusive world where justice, peace, health, human dignity, freedom and care for the environment are promoted and sustained by women’s leadership. To attain this vision, the World YWCA has developed a strategic framework adopted by the World YWCA Council in 2011 that guides its work from 2012 -2015. The framework embraces a rights-based approach and is implemented with Member Associations, partners and policy makers.

YWCA Pacific


As part of World YWCA’s Pacific Region, the YWCA of Aotearoa New Zealand has a commitment to contributing, resourcing and leading projects to enhance the capacity and profile of all YWCAs within the region.

Pacific Young Women’s Leadership Strategy

Safe. Respected. Included. Connected. Skilled.

We were part of the multi-agency group that contributed to the development of the Pacific Young Women’s Leadership Strategy, which was designed to help young women across the Pacific nations rise up as leaders in their communities

The Strategy is offered as a comprehensive agenda for any organisation wanting to engage young women and girls in their work and it is anticipated that YWCAs and stakeholders across the Pacific region will embrace the Strategy’s priorities and objectives.

YWCA Samoa

Linking in with the Pacific Young Women’s Leadership Strategy 2011-2014 goals of young women leaders being Safe, Included, Respected, Connected and Skilled, and our own strategic themes of Young Women’s Leadership and Young Women’s Safe Spaces, we have recently stepped into a mentoring relationship with YWCA Samoa.

Our mentoring role will focus on coordinating and supporting the revitalisation of the YWCA in Samoa and working with YWCA Samoa to develop and deliver Young Women’s leadership training initiatives across the Pacific that support the Strategy.