This Saturday, March 8th, is International Women’s Day. Supporting and empowering women and girls are fundamental to the work of DSW, something which new strive to achieve every day.

To celebrate this, and the continuing contribution that women have made to DSW’s work, we are giving over the blog every day to members of DSW to talk about the importance of ‘Women working in Development’


This afternoon, we give the floor to Anna Dahlman, Resource Mobilisation Officer at DSW Brussels.


Tell us a little about yourself – who are you and what is your role at DSW?

A Swedish national with a  background in political science, I joined the DSW Brussels advocacy team in 2011. In that capacity I worked with DSW colleagues and partners to improve European donor policies and funding for health and sexual and reproductive health. A year ago I moved to DSW’s resource mobilization team which means I now work closely together with all DSW offices on strategic resource mobilization and support the development of new projects. In addition, I deliver trainings and support partners on resource mobilization strategies, partnership building and how to access EU funding.


What excites you most about your work at DSW?

Seeing that the work we do makes a difference! From seeing how funding for life-saving health services increases, to looking at women and youth being empowered to influence decisions affecting them and make their own choices in life. I also very much like the fact that we work with many different partners; civil society but also government, donors, health workers, research institutes, private sector… And of course with local communities themselves!


In your view, how have women shaped the global development arena?

Constituting half of the world’s population I don’t think anyone can doubt the influence that women have on development, be it as entrepreneurs, politicians, community leaders, mothers or any other role. As important actors in the huge informal economy in many countries, women are really crucial for socio-economic and sustainable development.


Who is your biggest role model?

Women who dare to be uncomfortable, take on responsibilities and roles that are not traditionally female. This includes political leaders, but also those who challenge traditional norms – for example young girls demanding their equal right to boys of staying in school.   


How will you be marking International Women’s Day this year?

To me, International Women’s Day is about seeing that while we make progress, there are many things that remain to be done. We can never sit back and think that the job is done – in Europe or in Sub-Saharan Africa. That said, I will take the opportunity to think of those who have fought hard to get us where we are today, and all those who continue to do a fantastic job out there to improve the situation further.



Keep following the DSW Blog for continued updates as we celebrate International Women’s Day all week!