Closing Event of the CSDP Mentoring Programme for Women

The second mentoring programme for women in CSDP Missions was completed with a closing workshop that brought together mentors and mentees to reflect on their experiences during the programme.

The CoE’s Director Volker Jacoby welcomed the participants and thanked the mentors and mentees for their active participation. He noted that the mentoring programme was contributing to the efforts to have more women in leading positions in the future through fostering a culture of gender equality among CSDP leadership.   

Mihaela Matei, Head Of Division at the Civilian Planning and Conduct Capability (CPCC) and Sponsor of the mentoring programme, outlined current efforts to increase women’s participation in civilian CSDP missions and in leadership positions. She remarked that some missions have reached the 40% target of women’s representation, which had up until now seemed to be an impossible target. 

Mentors and mentees recalled their main professional and personal takeaways and highlights from the programme in an interactive session guided by inclusive leadership coach Lena Moll. 

The overall feedback was overwhelmingly positive, both mentors and mentees emphasised the rewarding exchanges with their mentoring partners as well as the support and inspiration they got from the monthly interactive online workshops. A few reflections from the participants of the programme included: 

“I had the opportunity to learn from my mentor, but also to share my experiences. I received advice, guidance, support and validation. It is true that I didn't find the answer to everything, but this is something that only time will tell.” 

“As a mentor, I find it very interesting to learn about the different needs of the mentee. It increases my understanding of the challenges women/younger colleagues face in the organisation.” 

“The programme as such met my expectations and was very high quality. The outcome surprised me as I discovered new areas that I should improve.” 

A survey conducted among the participants further highlights the positive overall feedback the programme received: 

Taina Järvinen, Senior Advisor at the CoE and Lena Moll, Programme Facilitator, who have conceptualised the programme, also expressed their gratitude to all the participants. A new mentoring programme is planned for 2023. Stay tuned!