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New Women Connectors at the Global Refugee Forum 2023

The Global Refugee Forum 2023 will take place from 13 to 15 December at the Palexpo in Geneva, Switzerland. Held every four years, this Forum is the world’s largest international gathering on refugees. New Women Connectors will of course be in Geneva with a delegation of feminist human rights defenders, to advocate for the meaningful participation of migrants, refugees and stateless people, in particular women.

New Women Connectors delegation at the global refugee forum

anila noor

Anila Noor is a refugee activist based in the Netherlands. She has diverse experience working with national and international nonprofit organisations and causes namely dealing with peace-building efforts, refugee integration, and special education focus on women's rights. She is the founder and Managing Director of New Women Connectors (NWC), a social change movement that advocates for feminist ideals and the meaningful participation of refugee, migrant and stateless people in policy-making. 


Anila found herself involved in the subjects of forced migration and identity crisis when she had to go through the same experience. Since then, she has been working as a refugee social entrepreneur focusing on Forced Migration, Asylum, Refugee Policies and Advocacy for the Rights of Migrants. Anila is also member of the Equality & Diversity Expert Group of the European Commission. 

Aml Samer

Aml Samer is an experienced humanitarian worker focused on refugee assistance and support, as well as an advocate for refugee rights. Over the past four years, she has been working tirelessly under the sponsorship of World Vision and the umbrella of UNHCR, and has seen firsthand the challenges that refugees face and the vital role that humanitarian workers play in providing them with the support they need to rebuild their lives. Aml is also the Founder/Executive Director of the non-governmental and non-profit organization Better Future, the first refugee woman-led organization in Georgia. Their mission is to work on community development and integration of refugees and migrants with the local community. 

Safia Ibrahimkel

Safia Ibrahimkhel is an Afghan refugee living in Pakistan and youth activist working for women’s socio-economic empowerment, advocating for education, women, and youth integration in peace and security. In 2019 she was awarded and selected as a Youth Peace Ambassador for Pakistan and Afghanistan Youth Dialogues. She has also worked as a youth consultant and as a Co-chair of the UNHCR Global Youth Advisory Council (GYAC) and Global Students Leader in the Tertiary Refugee Students Network (TRSN). Recently she established her own network under the title of Voices of Afghan Refugee Youth (VARY). Safia also worked as a teaching assistant with the Refugee-Led Research Hub, at Oxford University In 2013 she participated in Afghan Loya Jirgah and Peace Talk between Taliban and Afghan Government and NATO. Since then, Safia has been Participating and integrating young refugee voices, especially women's voices in the peacebuilding process and Peace Talk. Currently, Safia is working for GIZ as a consultant in its Education and Health Services project. GIZ is a German international cooperation service and a federal enterprise that supports the German Government in achieving its objectives in the field of international cooperation for sustainable development. 

George azzi

Georges Azzi is a seasoned human rights activist and strategist recognized for his pioneering work in advocating for the rights and representation of LGBTQIA+ communities, particularly within the challenging socio-political context of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). As a visionary leader, he founded Helem, the first LGBTQIA+ organization in Lebanon, and later the Arab Foundation for Freedoms and Equality (AFE), MENA's foremost regional sexual rights organization. 

Georges’s acumen in strategic communication and community mobilization has fostered groundbreaking legal and social progress, including the reduction of wrongful arrests and the banning of discriminatory practices against the LGBTI community in Lebanon. He has also been at the forefront of global advocacy, participating in UN meetings, speaking at the White House, and advising the Global Equality Fund. Currently serving as a consultant for the World Bank and other international bodies, Georges applies his extensive experience in social inclusion and policy analysis to support organizations and initiatives globally. His work with the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty and research into mental health and drug use within the LGBTQIA+ community further exemplify his commitment to promoting human rights and social justice. Residing in Spain, he continues to influence global networks and advocate for marginalized communities, leveraging his multilingual abilities and cross-cultural expertise to drive meaningful change.

sAndra alloush

Sandra Alloush is a political refugee and an international award winning journalist from Syria living in France, she is a documentary filmmaker with a demonstrated history of working in the broadcast media industry for over 15 years, working with several European channels like “ARTE”, her work is focused on asylum and migration issues and she produced over 25 documentaries on subjects related to migration, asylum and human rights. 

New Women Connectors produced Sandra's latest documentary film "In Your Eyes" as a powerful advocacy tool that challenges the populist narrative about migration in Europe and provides an alternative narrative, real and honest one, created and executed fully by migrants, refugees or otherwise. Sandra is a human rights defender and anti-racist activist with lived experience, and she is a proud member of New Women Connectors.

Amina Khalid

Amina Khalid is a British Somali/Yemeni refugee internationally trained in dialogue facilitation, mediation and conflict resolution. She is Head of Sustainable Communities Program of Initiatives of Change UK, and founder of Peace Begins at Home - an inter-generational peace building program designed to equip, enable and empower migrants/refugees and host communities to build bridges. As a human rights activist, she has a deep passion to work with marginalized communities and bring women’s issues to the forefront of social change, with men involved. She also sits on the Advisory Board of New Women Connectors.

Silsila Mahbuob

Silsila Mahbuob is community manager in the refugee led organization Refugee Advisory Board - RAB, Member of Board of Directors in ARENE Entrepreneur, an activist, writer, and singer. She is also a member of New Women Connectors, core team member of the European Coalition and part of the Afghan Refugee Experts Network in Europe. Silsila Mahbuob also has her own enterprise, with which she offers jobs to refugee women and men.

New Women Connectors is honored to have such a quality panel for the 2023 Global Refugee Forum.

Right click on the images below to download them and spread them with your network. Maybe someone interested in these topics will want to thave a conversation with the New Women Connectors delegation!

New Women Connectors co-organized space - the r-space: open to people without GRF registration

New Women Connectors is also honored to present the R-space, which we have been organising for months now, with other refugee led organisations. This space is open to everyone, and doesn't require any GRF registration. We are very excited to see you in this space that is truely accessible to all refugee leaders and organisations present in Geneva (some events are even accessible online!).

Join us there to see what meaningful participation actually is, and to understand more deeply how New Women Conenctors is working for leading resilience!

Final_R space agenda_08122023
Download PDF • 401KB

Swipe to the right - by clicking on the arrow on the right side of the image.

You can also open the program in full-view mode by clicking on the arrows in the upper-right corner. To register to the events, please download the agenda (file above - Final_R space agenda) and find the registrations linked to each event within the program.

Some practical information for all RLOs and people attending the R-space:

  • The location of R-Space is at Impact Hub Geneva (Rue Fendt 1, 1201 Genève, Switzerland)

  • The impact hub will be coordinated by a group of people to ensure everything is smooth. Approach us if you need anything and we will help as much as possible.

  • There are many events taking place and switching between events might take sometime. Please stick to the time slots assigned to you and if possible, give some time (10-15 minutes) so we can set up the next session. Sessions should not go overtime as this might create a chain of delayed event and we are all conscious of our time during this week.

  • There will be a person responsible for technical support on site and they will be providing the support needed.

  • The rooms will be equipped with presentational equipment. But if your event is hybrid, please keep the link ready to access the hybrid rooms as those links must be provided by the organizations holding the sessions.

  • Please be respectful to each other and everyone. Here is a respect code we are working with: “Harassment and bullying, including the use of hateful and hurtful language, are harmful to a respectful environment and therefore have no place here.”


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