Maktsalongen’s (makt=power, salong= parlor) goal is an equal society in which power and influence are distributed fairly and equaliy. We want more young women* to see themselves as leaders and challenge norms that put limitations on what power looks like and what a leader can be.
Maktsalongen was founded in November 2011. The founders Sara Haraldsson and Sofia Brändström, who both had been leaders in youth organizations, shared a frustration over the gender inequality that still existed in organizations. So they started a mentorship program for women* who are leaders in youth organizations.
Today Maktsalongen still have a mentorship program, but we also do so much more.
Maktsalongen works with gender equality on three levels: structural, organizational and individual:
Creating equality requires major structural changes. This requires a discussion and debate about the structures that create inequality. Maktsalongen aims to create such discussions and debates. This has mainly been done through seminars, creating and participating in debates on traditional as well as social media.
Organizations have to proactively work to create gender equality, but many organizations don’t know what to do or how to do it. Our belief, and we show organizations, is that it doesn’t need to be so difficult to work with equality.
We give lectures on gender equality, leadership, feminism, intersectionality and stress. Besides that, we also develop different methods to help organiaztions, such as:
- A platform called Skyddsnätet (safety net) that help organizations work against hate online: skyddsnatet.net.
- We have also developed a MethodKit for Equality (which are available in both Swedish and English), a tool to help organizations and companies to work more equally.
- Inga ursäkter (No Excuses) is a site where we have gathered common problems and excuses on why not to work with gender equality and offer specific solutions to each problem.
- We have written two book that can help organizations with different areas that usually creates difficulties: Stress & motståndskraft (Stress & resiliance) that is a book about how individuals and organizations can tackle stress and Handbok för jämställda möten (Manual for gender equal meetings) that helps organizations create more inclusive meetings.
Structural change and working with and within organizations is required in order to achieve the goal of gender equality in civil society. But until we have reached that, there are many people who are effected by the gender inequality that still exists. Therefore, Maktsalongen has networking and mentorship programs for women who are leaders in their organizations or movements. By bringing women together they can support, inspire, encourage each other and share experiences.
Maktsalongen is a non-profit organization run by a board elected by an annual meeting. The annual meeting also decides what the organization will work with the upcoming year. The staff at Maktsalongen are responsible for taking the decisions of the annual meeting and turning them into action.
*by women, we mean people who self-identify as women