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Leading women take centre stage

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LEADING women take centre stage at the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Peace Foundation’s inaugural Women for Peace conference tomorrow to mark International Day of Peace.

Hosted at the charity’s Warrington based Peace Centre, speakers include eminent campaigners and academics. The event will close with a speech from Tabitha Morton who was the Women’s Equality Party candidate in May’s Liverpool City region mayoral race. The 40 year old Liverpudlian campaigned on a platform of bringing more attention to the issue of gender equality in the northern powerhouse.

Other speakers will include Moss-Side anti-violence campaigner Dr Erinma Bell who was the first woman to be honoured with a sculpture in Manchester Town Hall and Nicola Benyahia, Director of Families for Life, an organisation working to support and empower families to combat radicalisation. Also in attendance will be Figen Murray, mother of Martyn Hett who was one of the 22 victims of the Manchester Arena bombing earlier this year. Following her son’s death, Ms Murray is being supported by the Peace Foundation’s Survivors Assistance Network which provides free practical and emotional support to anyone affected by a terrorist incident.

Hannah Larn, project lead for the Women for Peace programme said: “Around the world, women are disproportionately affected by violent conflict. Yet despite this, women are frequently excluded from the measures taken to seek peace – from grassroots level right up to international peace agreements.

The Peace Foundation’s Women for Peace project aims to train and support women in preventing and resolving community and family conflict and challenging extreme and prejudiced narratives. To date, the Peace Foundation has worked with over 200 women across the North of England. We want to empower women to become effective peacebuilders in their communities.”

The one day conference will explore the vital role women play in building peace at a community, national and international level; the impact of violent extremism on women; identity and belonging and how women can build stronger networks to promote peaceful societies.

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