Grantee profile

Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq

Founded in 2003, the Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq (OWFI) is a women’s rights organisation that provides shelter, protection and legal services to women and girls escaping gender-based violence in Iraq. OWFI opened Iraq’s first women’s shelter in Baghdad in 2004, and now operates 11 shelters and safe houses for women who escaped sexual and gender-based violence in areas formerly controlled by and recently liberated from ISIS, as well as government-controlled regions. Its underground network of local activists has provided safe passage for women and girls who fled ISIS, and continues to do so for those returning to newly liberated areas. It also trains local staff, including Yazidi girls, to provide survivors with culturally competent trauma counselling. SRT’s grant is routed via MADRE, a US-based organisation which works to strengthen grassroots women’s organisations in war, disaster and their aftermath.