Elif Kalan is a freelance consultant on conflict analysis and resolution, peacebuilding and community-based programs and initiatives with extensive experience working with international organisations, such as GIZ, UN agencies, the European Commission, IMC and Ret International. Recently, she consulted for UN Women Turkey in Gender Sensitive Refugee Response Program working with Syrian and host communities on gender in complex emergencies and conflict as well as on mitigation through local mediation practices and social cohesion approach. She has also organised trainings and workshops in numerous universities. She is a co-founder of Conflictus Consultancy on Conflict Resolution in Turkey where she has designed, maintained, developed and delivered several training programs and projects to boost the skills and knowledge of groups particularly on conflict resolution and community-based mediation. She has been active within the MWMN Turkey antenna since the beginning and has co-conducted a gender sensitive mediation training program titled ‘Women and Mediation’ reaching out to women working extensively in refugee response programs at CSOs and local authorities. She is highly motivated and interested in women and youth leadership in conflict resolution and mediation processes at all levels and in developing tailor-made and specific training programs through using gender-sensitive and youth and women-specific mediation methods. She holds an MA in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from Sabanci University in Istanbul and an MSc in Political Sociology from London School of Economics with Jean-Monnet scholarship as is part of the Women in Conflict 1325 Fellowship Program and the Legislative Fellowship Program supported by the US State Department.
Sophia Papastavrou is a citizen of Canada and Cyprus and spent her formative years in Dominican Republic and Ghana before immigrating to Canada. She holds a Ph.D. in Social Justice Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto. Her dissertation entitled: Women’s Organizations for Peace: Moving Beyond the Rhetoric of the Cyprus Problem was the result of over 7 years of field research in a frozen conflict zone. She has previously worked on consultancies with the OSCE Mission to Croatia, the World Bank, and the United Nations. Sophia held the role of Gender Technical Lead at World Vision International Middle East and Eastern Europe covering fragile states and the Syria Response. Prior to holding this position, she led the Gender Learning Hub, including management of the Gender Based Violence Regional project. Sophia was a speaker at TEDx Nicosia Women in 2015 and recently, worked with women’s civil society to co- create the first White Book of Best Practice on UNSCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security in Cyprus. She was selected as part of the She-Experts initiative by the Mediterranean Institute of Gender Studies (MIGS) aiming to enhance the visibility and impact of women in their professional capacity. She joined the network because of her commitment and passion for women in peace building specifically building gender data and gender assessments to inform gender transformative approaches to meeting the WPS mandate.