“Writing for life” brought together Iraqi women from different ethnic and religious backgrounds to express themselves through their writing, promoting their participation in public life and the art scene in the country. The project provided a welcome opportunity for these women to get out of their communities, in a society that is still deeply divided by war and governed by patriarchal values and norms.

During a series of 5-day workshops, the participants could test and improve their writing skills on various topics, in a setting far removed from their every-day lives. In exchange with each other and the trainers they found hope, self-confidence and encouragement.

Between 2016 and July 2018 about 230 women participated in the writing workshops, many of them on several occasions. You can listen to a radio programme (in German) by Larissa Bender about Writing for Life here: WDR 3 Gutenbergs Welt and read an article on Deutschlandfunk Kultur about the writer Najem Wali, who led one of our first training workshops back in 2016.

Get an impression of the project – watch the video.