Western Balkan Gender Advisers and Gender Coordinators in Ministries of Defence and Armed Forces Gather for First Time
To ensure that the process of achieving gender equality in the Western Balkan Ministries of Defence and the Armed Forces is on the right track and that the challenges and support needed for smooth functioning of their Gender Advisors are identified, the first Regional Meeting of Gender Advisers and Gender Coordinators in the Ministries of Defence and the Armed Forces in the Western Balkans was held in Budva, Montenegro on 16 March 2023.
At the request of Ministries of Defence of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, the Republic of North Macedonia, and the Republic of Serbia, SEESAC gathered their Gender Advisers and Gender Coordinators to enable networking and experience sharing and induce knowledge exchange.
The Gender Advisors are critical for the implementation of the United Nations’ Women, Peace and Security agenda but also for organisational and operational effectiveness.
Opening the meeting, Col. Velibor Bakrač, the Director General of the HR Directorate of the Ministry of Defence of Montenegro, emphasised the importance of regional cooperation for achieving gender equality in the military.
This meeting was organised within the “Strengthening of Regional Cooperation on Gender Mainstreaming in Security Sector Reform in the Western Balkans” project financed by the governments of Norway and the Slovak Republic. With SEESAC’s support, the project provides the Ministries of Defence and the Armed Forces in the Western Balkans a platform for knowledge sharing and developing policies aimed at ensuring long-term and sustainable inclusion of the gender perspective in the military.