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Policy brief: designing programs to increase women’s participation in local government

In 2006, The Initiative for Inclusive Security partnered with the Rwandan Association of Local Government Authorities (RALGA) and the National Women’s Council to conduct training to increase women’s participation in the 2006 local elections. The preparation of more than 2,300 female candidates helped Rwanda successfully fulfill a constitutional quota at the local level. Women captured over 30 percent of the seats in district government and are now one-third of district executives throughout the country, as well as two-thirds of executives in the city of Kigali. Partnering with RALGA and the National Women’s Council allowed the program to reach a strategic group of participants, established community leaders likely to share the information widely with other women. Training sessions were held at annual provincial meetings of the National Women’s Council throughout the country.