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Zonta Advocacy


”NGOs and the monitoring of the Istanbul Convention” was the title of a webinar organized by the committee “NGOs as advocates for Gender Equality and Women’s Rights” on January 31, 2023. You can listen to the recording of the webinar. (click the picture)





The highlight was the presentation by Mihail Stojanoski who works at the Secretariat of the Istanbul Convention. He outlined the scope of the “Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence” and described how non-compliance is monitored and reported by GREVIO.


The webinar can be wrapped up in one very important take-home-lesson for NGOs: any report on non-compliance with the Istanbul Convention is highly welcome and can be submitted informally and confidentially to: The webinar was attended by more than 150 participants.

A Renewed Call for Ratification of the Council of Europe Istanbul Convention

Sexism: See it. Name it. Stop it

Council of Europe takes action

Zonta International, districts and clubs advocate at the international, national and local levels on issues related to human rights and gender equality. 

At the international level, Zonta International advocates on global issues primarily through the United Nations (UN) and Council of Europe. 

At the national level, Zonta districts, areas and clubs take action in support of, or in opposition to, legislation on issues affecting women and girls. 

At the local level, Zonta clubs monitor laws and policies and their impact on women, participate in hearings and public meetings with local politicians and administrators, and host speakers and panels to raise awareness about issues affecting women in their local communities.

Advocacy is: Taking action and speaking up for women’s rights!


Advocacy in our District

In the past yearsadvocacy grew to an important part of the Club’s projects and activities and has gained significance in our club work. Throughout the whole year clubs take advocacy action - not only to say NO to Violence against Women but also to say YES to Gender Equality:

  • To promote the human rights of women

  • To promote the Sustainable Goal No 5 of the UN Agenda 2030 “Achieving Gender Equality  and Empowering all women and girls” 

  • To fight violence against women and girls

  • To fight discrimination 

  • To fight for gender equality and equal rights

Advocacy Activities throughout the year:

Clubs in D28 conduct meaningful advocacy activities (to name only a few): 

  • On commemoration days like International Women’s Day to promote Zonta’s mission and vision and to organize events to fight sexism, VAW, gender stereotypes 

  • On YWPA-/JMK-Award ceremonies to promote Zonta’s educational programs supporting women’s academic and professional career 

  • Supporting young talented girls and women in second education and in starting their business

  • Focussing on migration issues, like special protection for refugee women and girls as well as language classes. Advocacy activities supporting the beneficiaries as well as raising awareness of their special needs to the community

  • Supporting women’s shelter through meaningful measures 

  • Supporting young girls and young women to participate in self-defence classes

  • Organizing public debates in schools to raise awareness of equal rights and to raise the young generation in a culture of gender equality. 

During the 16 Days of Activism, 25 November-10 December, almost 100% of our clubs in our Areas take part in the Zonta Says NO to Violence Against Women-Campaign, some of them by joining forces with like-minded organizations. The common goal is to raise awareness of the severe human rights violations, women and girls are facing nationally and globally and to influence the making and implementation of laws, as well as changing gender-based attitudes and behaviors to end violence against women.


For us in Zonta, Ending Child Marriage is at the core of our mission to advocate for women’s rights. Thus the topic on combating early marriage will run like a golden thread through our advocacy efforts as well as through our fundraising efforts and will raise awareness of one of the worst obstacles for girls to reach a self-contained life. 

The District goal is a 100% participation of D28 Zonta clubs in the Zonta says NO-Campaign with at least 60% including the topic of Child and Forced Marriage in their campaigns. 


In addition to the ZSN-Campaign, another initiative grew very popular during the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence: “Orange the World”. 100% of our clubs will join this world wide initiative by illuminating popular buildings and monuments of their cities in the colour orange to raise awareness of the many faces of violence against women.

Advocacy Policy

Information on Council of Europe

1x1 of Advocacy (in German only) 

Advocacy Policy

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