The engagement of women in Iraq’s political process has been a major focus of NDI’s efforts in the country since 2006. Through the Women’s Empowerment Program (WEP), the Institute has conducted extensive training programs for women activists that have inspired engagement from the grassroots to the Iraqi Parliament.
In a recent interview, a member of NDI’s Iraq staff, Ferdos Majeed, discusses a series of NDI training programs in Erbil that have encouraged women’s political participation. Majeed, who has worked for NDI since 2005, is the first recipient of the Andi Parhamovich Fellowship, named for Ms. Parhamovich, an NDI staff member who was killed in Baghdad in 2007 while riding in a convoy that came under attack. The fellowship is awarded each year to a young woman who is deeply involved in building and consolidating democracy in her own country.