At the end of June 1996, the Geneva-based international non-governmental organization (NGO) Synergies Africa held a brainstorming session with a group of women lawyers, judges, academics and entrepreneurs, along with representatives of other NGOs and international organizations. The focus of the meeting was to strategize on ways to enhance the role of African women in preventing, managing and resolving conflicts.
The session was funded by the Government of the Netherlands.
The idea was initially to create an organization that would pursue the following objectives:
To promote the role of women in resolving conflicts.
To ensure that women are involved in setting peace agendas and subsequent political
To provide women with a voice in decision-making processes and strengthen their capacities
at the grassroots level.
The new independent body was expected to be capable of promoting its objectives within existing and emerging structures for equality, peace and development in Africa. It was also expected to act as a communication link between African women committed to the cause of peace and prominent women at national, regional and international levels.
It was in this context that Femmes Africa Solidarité (FAS) was created, and in December 1996, it gained official recognition as an international NGO.