Women’s education and empowerment in the Philippines: A community solution


  • Amelyn Lanada Laro Southern Philippines Agri Business and Marine and Aquatic School of Technology




Education, Women's empowerment, Philippines, Leadership, Social work


The Advocacy on Women’s Education and Empowerment (AWE) Project is a community action program based in the Philippines that was implemented after participation in the 2016 Community Solutions Fellowship for Global Leaders—a professional leadership development program for community leaders across the world that involves a four-month fellowship with a nonprofit organisation or local government agency in the United States. The inspiration for the AWE project was the Girls Getting Ahead in Leadership (GGAL) program of the Women’s Initiative for Self-Empowerment (WISE) in Minnesota. The AWE project empowers young women through a series of capacity building exercises, beginning with personal self-awareness, leadership development, conflict management, peace circles and gender and human rights. This provides opportunities for female social work students and young social workers to reach their full potential as gender and human rights advocates and leaders in the Philippines. This paper aims to highlight the role of social workers in gender and human rights advocacy at the local and international level, details the experiences, lessons and challenges of running a project which builds the capacity of young women, and promotes the role of higher educational institutions in building the skills and competence of future leaders.


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Author Biography

  • Amelyn Lanada Laro, Southern Philippines Agri Business and Marine and Aquatic School of Technology

    Professor Amelyn Lanada Laro is the Program Head and Fellow of the Bachelor of Science in Social Work at the Southern Philippines Agri Business and Marine and Aquatic School of Technology, Davao Occidental. She has been the Philippine delegate to international workshops and conferences in Canada, Korea, Kazakhstan, the USA, Sri Lanka and Hongkong. She is an active alum of several prestigious international organisations including the Community Solutions Program, ASIAN Gender Trainers Network Program and Voluntary Service Overseas Bahaginan.


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A young woman in a white t-shirts looks through a glass window.







How to Cite

“Women’s education and empowerment in the Philippines: A community solution” (2022) The Humanitarian Leader, p. Working Paper 029, September 2022. doi:10.21153/thl2022art1650.

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