The problems and challenges facing Muslim women across the globe are vast and multi-various. Consequently, the more organizations dedicated to creating change, the more powerful this momentum can become. The WISE program has developed a collaborative strategy that complements organizations working to advancing the position of Muslim women. It fosters collaboration and supports the diverse work of Muslim women leaders worldwide, building capacity for collective action.
Nevertheless, all WISE programs are without precedent in scope, scale and mission. Holistic and comprehensive, WISE is transforming the position of Muslim women in innumerable contexts from within the Islamic faith and traditions.
WISE has both global scale and deep roots in Muslim communities throughout the world. We have developed a collaborative strategy for collective action by supporting the diverse work of Muslim women leaders and cooperating with organizations dedicated to advancing the position of Muslim women. WISE prides itself on using a comprehensive approach to transform the position of Muslim women in the following unique ways:
Muslim women’s movements remain hampered by their inability or unwillingness to confront destructive religious interpretations. Activists have tended to ignore or avoid religion, thus failing to mobilize large portions of their grassroots constituencies who draw upon religion within their daily lives. WISE, in contrast, offers a Muslim voice. It directly addresses the need for a Muslim women’s movement with religious legitimacy and authenticity.
Though numerous organizations have wrestled with Muslim women’s disempowerment, rarely have they accounted holistically for the various factors contributing to their disempowerment. Due to a lack of specific knowledge, these approaches often have a Western framework for understanding the problem. WISE approaches change from a holistic perspective that addresses the many interrelated factors that contribute to gender-based inequality.
While Muslim women’s advocacy efforts have often fragmented along geographic, ideological, political and socio-economic lines, WISE breaks ground as an inclusive initiative, fostering cooperation amongst divergent and sometimes opposing groups. Facilitated by this national, ideological and professional diversity, WISE women have united behind Islamic ideals and the commitment to creating positive, sustainable and much-needed change.