The Chair (Cllr. Carmel Brady) and Vice Chair (Cllr. Shelly Herterich Quinn) of the WoMeN’s Regional Caucus engaged in a number of workshops in Poland on 11 May 2023 at the Innovation in Politics Awards which took place at the Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw.
The regional caucus was nominated as a finalist for the prestigious democracy prize at the European awards which celebrated 90 finalists from over 400 European entries. The Awards are presented to the politicians in recognition of their innovative projects based on our European values of social balance, democracy, and human rights – regardless of their party affiliation or level of government.
The WoMeN’s Regional Caucus is a project funded by the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage and supported by the Association of Irish Local Government (AILG) and See Her Elected (SHE).
The regional caucus was established in late 2021 and brings together all female councillors from 13 counties across the West, Midlands and Northern region of Ireland where between 78 percent to 95 percent of the elected local authority councils are made up of men.
The event began with a number of workshops Thursday morning where finalists engaged and shared information and ideas in relation to their projects. Innovative project finalists included the City of Rybnik in Poland where local government adopted a participatory approach to the revitalisation of degraded areas and Sophia Chatbox, a digital chatbox created in Switzerland that anonymously assists survivors of domestic violence in gathering potential evidence and access to resources and supports to meet the needs of survivors globally.
A number of panel discussions on a number of topics such as Saving Democracy, the Future of Political Parties and How to Translate Best Practices into Local Reality also took place throughout the day featuring guest speakers from throughout Europe which included Eamon Gilmore, EU Special Representative for Human Rights and former Labour party politician.
Download a copy of the WoMeN’s Regional Caucus Progress Report HERE.