September 22, 2012
e-mail to KtK representative
Dear Annika Karlsson,
I hope this e-mail finds you well. I was given your e-mail by Lara Aharonian of the Women’s Resource Center. I’ve been a long time volunteer with the center and I am now working on a collaborative cross-border peace-building project with the feminist collective, Amargi in Turkey. This project, titled, Beyond Borders: Linking Our Stories, aims to establish a dialogue and cooperation between Armenian and Turkish women, to build solidarity among women across the closed Turkish-Armenian border and to develop an innovative approach to peace-building by collecting a number of interviews by and from women in both countries, which will then be turned into a performance and book for larger audiences. Some of the topics that will be covered include marriage, abortion, violence, war, poverty, family, traditions, sexuality, and the environment. The purpose is to make visible ordinary women’s lives living across the border and to make their stories accessible to women in both countries, as well as to women in other countries with conflicted borders.
Because most policies and peace negotiations are usually implemented by higher levels of government where women’s voices are not often heard, this project will place the power to create peace into ordinary women’s hands. After all of the interviews are conducted (approximately 30 in total from both sides) a group of women from Armenia will travel to Turkey to meet and work with a group of women from Turkey for two weeks. The interviews that were conducted will be discussed and analyzed, workshops on conflict resolution will be given, and a short film will be made documenting the process of the two groups coming together and preparing for a final performance at Madrasa Theater in Sirince, Turkey. Some time after this initial meeting, the group will also meet in Armenia to hold a second performance in Yerevan.
We are in the process of applying for grants to accomplish our goal. Currently, I am preparing an application for the The United States Institute of Peace Annual Grant Competition. As part of the application, we are expected to provide reference letters by people that are familiar with the work that the Women’s Resource Center does. This letter should speak “explicitly about the qualifications and expertise of the applicant organization/institution, the project director and/or key project personnel, as well as the importance, feasibility, objectives, and potential impact of the project.” Please let us know if you would be interested in writing a reference letter on our behalf. The deadline is October 1.
September 24, 2012
This sounds like a very interesting project. I will provide you with an endorsement letter. Can you write a few sentences about yourself (if you are the project manager) and I will write about WRCA.
Please let us know if the application is approved or not. We might be able to support it or find other donors if it won’t get funding this time.
I am on a business trip, but I will be back in the office on Thursday so will send it to you then.