33rd Triennial Congress

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A Great Congress!
 Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom - U.S.
33rd Triennial Congress
Thursday July 27th – Sunday July 30th

University of Illinois at Chicago
Student Center West, 2nd Floor Conference Rooms
828 South Wolcott Ave ● Chicago IL 60612

Congress is over, but the experience lives on!
Go to News from Congress for videos, reports and photos highlighting events and experiences.

Join other strong & feisty women from across the U.S. who are rising up and organizing for action to create an effective, sustainable global grassroots movement. Designed to be a working Congress, each conference segment is inspired by a theme: Rise Up, Revolt, Remember, Reimagine and Reclaim. Attendees will sharpen their activist skills and enhance their knowledge of key issues worked on by WILPF members back home. Collaborative workshops with next-step action items make this Congress a go-to-event for building strong alliances and forming a more peaceful and just world.

Congress Headquarters:
The conference will be held at the Student Center West Conference Facility on the University of Illinois-Chicago Campus, within walking distance of Jane Addams’s Hull House, the first settlement house for immigrants in the U.S.

Lodging will be offered in dorms close to the conference facility. Most meals will be included in your registration, with a variety of on-your-own meal options available from the conference facility cafeteria and nearby culinary scenes in Little Italy and Greek Town. Take advantage of your trip and come early or stay late to experience Chicago! 

See Registration and Chicago, for more details.

Peace Activist Panel
Chicago Activist Panel
Issue Workshops
Skill-Building Workshops
Walk to Hull House & Tour
Member Showcase
Entertainment & More!

See Program, Speakers and Schedule for more details.

Thursday, July 27 – Evening Plenary:  Peace Activist Panel

  • Phyllis Bennis – Director, New Internationalism Project, Institute for Policy Studies
  • Leah Bolger – Coordinating Committee Chair, World Beyond War
  • Kathy Kelly – Co-Coordinator, Voices for Creative Nonviolence
  • Ellen Thomas – Co-Chair, WILPF US Disarm/End Wars Committee

Friday, July 28 - Morning Plenary

  • Larry Spivack – President, Illinois Labor History Society

Friday, July 28 – Evening Plenary:  Chicago Activist Panel

  • Olga Bautista – Community Organizer, Southeast Environmental Taskforce
  • Mary Dean – Organizer for World Beyond War, WILPF US Member
  • Jeanette Hernandez – Longtime Active Member of AFSCME Local 1989
  • Pam Smith – Co-Founder & Executive Director, Addie Wyatt Center, Chicago and Kingian Nonviolence Trainer

Saturday, July 29 – Afternoon Plenary

  • Stefanee Parks-Asche – Director, Illinois Labor History Society
  • Mary Hanson Harrison – President, WILPF US

See Program, Speakers and Schedule for more details.

Workshop topics were selected based on feedback from a recent WILPF member survey. Sessions focus on issue and skill-building topics presented in a participatory discussion format.

See Program, Speakers and Schedule for more details.

Member Showcase: 
A WILPF Tribute Video will be produced to showcase all the members who make WILPF great! Submit your photos and videos by July 1st (deadline extended). WILPF Branches (and committees) will be given the opportunity to setup Branch Table Exhibits. Reserve your table by July 1st (deadline extended). The Des Moines WILPF Branch will be hosting a Jane Addams Children's Book Awards (JACBA) Corner on Friday and Saturday. See Member Showcase, for more details.

Leadership Institute:
WILPF members are invited to attend the WILPF-US Leadership Institute, which will explore how skillful leadership can help branches build their vision, their direction, and more effective local work. During sessions held before the Congress and interspersed throughout it, participants will learn the skills and art of leadership especially needed for our times. To find out more, click here.


Voices - Thursday night
For 35 years, 8 recordings (including the 2015 release of Sailing Free), and evolving generations of musicians, Voices has been a mainstay in the Chicago political-folk scene.  Primarily a choral group singing a capella or with minimal accompaniment, Voices dedicates their music to seeking social justice through a multicultural message of peace.  Selections include an embrace of immigrants, sisters and brothers of all walks of life, the planet, and a world without war.  All Sailing Free sales continue to support Sarab Shada, a Voices' member for three years, and her family who now live as refugees in Turkey. 

Harmony, Hope, & HealingHarmony, Hope & Healing - Friday night
Let your spirits rise with inspirational gospel-style songs and heartfelt stories performed by a small ensemble cast of this sought-after hometown Chicago group. 

Harmony, Hope & Healing’s (HHH) mission is to create a safe environment where vulnerable individuals and families heal and rebuild through the restorative power of music. Founded in 2000 and incorporated as a nonprofit in 2003, HHH provides music programs at various shelters, residential facilities, community centers and the Cook County Jail, all located in some of Chicago’s most poverty-stricken and violent neighborhoods.  Supporting women, men and children as they heal from traumas associated with homelessness, addictions, violence, incarceration and isolation, HHH strives to improve the quality of participants’ lives. Through the transformative power of music, HHH programs foster the development of key life skills, including stress management, communication and parenting; building a sense of community and nurturing hope for a better future. Participants also have the opportunity to perform with the HHH choir at public events which helps them gain self-confidence and exposes them to a variety of new experiences and people. HHH helps individuals become independent and emotionally and socially healthy members of society.

Scholarships to help pay for Congress costs will be distributed as funds become available. If you would like to apply for a scholarship, please download and email your completed application to Jan Corderman, jancorderman@msn.com,  Teresa Castillo, taca_03@ymail.com and Karen Pope kosbornepope@gmail.com by June 23rd.  If you have any questions, please contact Jan Corderman at 515-205-4504.  If you would like to make an online donation to fund a Congress Scholarship, go here.

Our sincere gratitude for the generous supporters who helped underwrite Congress to make it enjoyable and affordable for all. See Supporters, for more details..

For more information:
Contact Chris Wilbeck, Congress Coordinator, chris.wilpf@gmail.com or 515-229-6988.