Starting February 2019, 21 indigenous women leaders from around the world started participating at the sixth annual Global Leadership School of Indigenous Women of FIMI, the International Indigenous Women’s Forum. The program lasts until May 2019 and focuses on human rights and international advocacy skills. It has a number of components: online, face-to-face classes, the three-day seminar at Columbia University, attendance of the annual session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues and a monitoring process through FIMI’s virtual platform.
The Three-day Seminar at Columbia was hosted by the Institute for the Study of Human Rights (ISHR)/Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Program in cooperation with the Columbia Law School Human Rights Institute on 17, 18 and 19 April 2019. It aimed at providing a complementary human rights curriculum to that planned under FIMI’s guidance, so as to give the opportunity to participants to explore a broader context of human rights topics and advocacy. Seminars were facilitated by Columbia professors Elazar Barkan, Yasmine Ergas, Hi’ilei Hobart and Elsa Stamatopoulou, as well as by Indigenous women leaders Joan Carling, Representative of Indigenous Peoples Major Group for the Sustainable Development Goals, and Tarcila Rivera Zea, President of FIMI and UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues expert member. The indigenous women participants also presemted their advocacy plans. The Seminar was conducted with Spanish/English interpretation.
As in previous years, the knowledge exchanged and bonds of friendship and solidarity created among all, participants and facilitators alike, made this an inspiring experience for life. The Institute for the Study of Human Rights and its Indigenous Peoples’ Rights Program are proud to be linked with FIMI in this effort and look forward to future sessions of this program!