The SIHA Story
The Strategic Initiative for Women in the Horn of Africa (SIHA) is a network of civil society organizations from Sudan, South Sudan, Somalia, Somaliland, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, Uganda, and, most recently, the coastal area of Kenya. Established in 1995 by a coalition of women’s rights activists with the aim of strengthening the capacities of women’s rights organizations and addressing women’s subordination and violence against women and girls in the Horn of Africa, SIHA has grown substantially and is now comprised of close to 75 member organizations.
SIHA is a non-profit organization with a Regional Secretariat Office based in Kampala, Uganda and additional offices in Khartoum, Sudan and Wau, South Sudan. SIHA further has Focal points in Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, and Somaliland. Where SIHA is hosted by Somali Women Development Center (SWDC) in Mogadishu, Somalia, the Union of Ethiopian Women Charitable Association (UEWCA) in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and Women Action for Advocacy and Progress Organization (WAAPO) in Hargeisa, Somaliland.
Strategic Themes of Focus 2017-2020
Reducing Violence Against Women and Girls
Strengthening women’s access to justice and transforming negative and harmful religious and cultural dogma
Empowering women economically toward realization of economic, social and cultural rights (ESCR)
Combating trafficking of women and girls from the Horn
Building inclusive women’s movements
SIHA envisions women and girls in the Horn of Africa with the right to live in a peaceful, just environment and the ability to exercise their equal rights as human beings. As a sub-regional network of women’s human rights and gender equality activists, SIHA is in a unique position to move this vision forward as one of very few indigenous coalitions born and nurtured inside the Horn. Strong ties and connections with women and their communities drive SIHA’s work across the region. After more than 20 years of working to advance women’s human rights in highly patriarchal contexts frequently characterized by insecurity, SIHA’s expertise is rooted in its familiarity with the sociopolitical situations around the Horn and the grassroots work of its members. SIHA’s membership continues to grow steadily, evidencing SIHA’s enduring relevance and effectiveness, and the ongoing urgency of advancing women’s human rights in the region.