YWCA Scotland – The Young Women’s Movement

YWCA is a world movement of women leading change. Our vision is a world where every woman can shape her own life journey and fulfil her potential, where the voices of women are heard, respected and celebrated. We help to bring this about by creating empowering spaces for girls and young women to meet together in groups and clubs, activities and conversations.

What drives our Young Women’s Movement?

Equality for women and girls

We are part of a worldwide movement that upholds human rights. We challenge gender inequality in every area of our lives and at every point along our journey.

Gender inequality is a structural issue
We know that the barriers we experience as women are part of an institutionalised inequality which unjustly favours men in terms of position, power and wealth.

We are feminists
Our work is founded on a commitment to feminism. This means tackling all shapes and forms of inequality and striving for change. The power to change the status quo lies within all women and girls

Our movement is for all women
We welcome and respect each other as women and girls who come with richly different experiences and perspectives on class, sexuality, race, religion, ability, age and culture.

In our own voices

We encourage women and girls to find their own voice and speak out confidently when women are valued less than men. We explore our personal and shared stories together. We question the values, beliefs and traditions that hold us back.

Women and girl only spaces

We are working to revive and re-ignite women and girls only spaces. In those spaces, we nurture an empowering cycle of learning and leadership.

Inquiry-led learning

We create opportunities to question and reflect together in a process of positive inquiry. Our approach is to value our own experiences and knowledge, develop our confidence, and learn from one another, strengthening our voices as women.

Learning for life

We encourage women and girls to consider what they want to achieve and how to change their own lives as well as changing the world around them. We focus on developing skills that women and girls can use beyond their involvement with us, and as part of their learning for life.

Leading the change we want to see

We want to see women and girls thrive on a local and global scale. We create transformational spaces that will enable young women to lead the change.

Nothing about us without us

We want to see young women make changes, whether that is change at a personal level or at a community or institutional level, on their own terms.

Stronger together

Our global, intergenerational movement offers opportunities and encouragement for women and girls to develop their leadership skills and ambitions, to engage, to take initiative, to lead the lives that will fulfil them.

We are part of a bigger picture

We align our work with existing strategic priorities, which push for gender equality. This includes: Curriculum for Excellence (CfE), Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC), Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) and the United Nations. Our work supports and holds us all to account for making a difference in favour of women and girls at home and internationally.