March 12, 2024

Advancing Equality: Financing With Feminist Approaches

The discussion will focus on the crucial role of Global South CSOs in economically empowering survivors of gender-based violence, emphasizing the significance of feminist financing. Lessons from the FON program will be shared through expert panels, fostering dynamic discussions, knowledge exchange, and collaborative problem-solving.


Moderator:  Alejandra Garcia, FON Programme Manager – Global 



  • Tori Chakma, Bangladesh

Actively involved with SPaRC (Supporting People and Rebuilding Communities) a CHT (Chittagong Hill Tracts, Bangladesh) based organization as ‘Focal person of economic development’. SPaRC is an organization working on issues like Human Rights, Discrimination and Violence based on Gender, Race or Sex, LGBT rights etc. The incumbent has the responsibility of analysing potential economic opportunities suitable with the skills set which the VAW and other victims possesses and to employ them accordingly for their financial independence. 


  • Shelani Palihawada, Sri Lanka 

Shelani is the Program Director at Youth Advocacy Network Sri Lanka, an Attorney-at-Law with a degree from the University of Colombo. Actively collaborating with vulnerable communities, she empowers them as SRHR peer educators, focusing on the deaf community, apparel sector employees, and grassroots youth. Shelani contributes to the technical advisory committee on adolescent and youth health in Sri Lanka and is engaged with regional and global organizations. Her primary goal is to enhance SRHR information accessibility for young people through inclusive digital platforms. Currently, she manages a successful hotline-based support ecosystem for Persons affected by TFSGBV in Sri Lanka. 


  • Carolina Calle, Colombia 

Carolina Calle, sex worker and human rights defender, activist for more than 15 years, feminist, she is part of the Putamente Poderas corporation, she is also director of the Calle 7 Colombia corporation and President of the sex work union Astrasex, the first union for sex workers in all their diversities and modalities. 

Carolina is part of the Latin American platform for people who carry out sex work PLAPERTS, which has a presence in 13 Latin American countries where she is the referent for Colombia. 

Her priority is the defense of human rights and labor rights of sex workers all around the world. 


  • Alesandra Ogeta, Kenya 

Alesandra Ogeta, currently the Deputy Director at Jinsiangu Kenya, is a seasoned human resource management practitioner dedicated to advancing the well-being and rights of Intersex, Transgender, and Gender Non-Conforming people (ITGNC) in Kenya. With over a decade of experience, Alesandra utilizes diverse strategies, including media and community relations, strategic litigation, and government research, to lobby for legal recognition and gender equality. Her impactful advocacy extends globally, contributing significantly to the human rights agenda for Trans people in Kenya.


  • Mar Merita Blat, France

AFD‘s expert in gender issues, Mar Merita Blat has been working to promote gender equality in France and abroad for more than 10 years. 

She has been specializing in this field since she completed her studies. After obtaining a Master’s degree in International Affairs at Sciences Po Paris, Mar Merita Blat undertook a second Master’s degree, this time in Gender Equality at Universitat Jaume I in Spain.  

In her various roles, Mar Merita Blat has published materials and created tools related to masculinity issues, gender stereotypes, combating violence against women, public policies for equality, and the evaluation of relevant legislation. In parallel, she continues to be involved in the voluntary sector. She became a member of the Osez le Féminisme association, and from 2014 to 2019, she worked as vice-president of advocacy for UN Women France. 


  • Time :

    8:30 am to 10:00 am

  • :

    March 12, 2024

  • :

    UN HQ, New York