A report of the NGO Advocacy Network for Women (KIDOG) on its participation in the United Nations Conference on Human Settlements, HABITAT II NGO Forum, Istanbul, Turkey, May 30 - June 14, 1996.
This report describes the participation of the Turkish NGO (nongovernmental organization) Advocacy Network for Women (KIDOG) in the UN's Habitat II NGO Forum, which took place May 30-June 14, 1996. KIDOG originated in the participation of 11 NGOs in a two-day advocacy workshop sponsored by The Futures Group International in Turkey in July 1995. In the fall of 1995, the 11 NGOs requested technical assistance in networking, advocacy, and strategic planning. In March 1996, eight additional groups joined KIDOG during another advocacy workshop. Using participatory techniques, KIDOG members decided that their participation in the NGO Forum would involve 1) provision of information about the status of women and reproductive health in Turkey and 2) seeking support for the Network agenda and an increase in Network membership. KIDOG's contributions to the NGO Forum included distributing KIDOG booklets and posters, developing a computer-based presentation on women and reproductive health, sponsoring an exhibit booth, hosting site visits, and conducting workshops on the following topics: 1) NGO initiatives in reproductive health, 2) domestic violence, 3) informal education for women, and 4) sustainable development. When KIDOG members evaluated their participation in the NGO Forum, they agreed that KIDOG's most important contribution was serving as a model for collaborative work, which is a new phenomenon in Turkey. KIDOG members plan to continue their organized advocacy activities.