Leonésia Tecla da Silva


Leonésia Tecla da Silva,
Co-founder and member of the Steering Committee
Southeast Asian Women Peace Mediators

Leonésia Tecla da Silva has over 20 years of peacebuilding and mediation experience focused on conflict resolution, women and youth empowerment, and building resilience and social cohesion. She has been serving as the National Consultant for Women, Peace, and Security with UN Women Timor-Leste, implementing the country’s WPS agenda to establish the first national network of mediators, connecting the public sector and community-based justice actors in providing gender sensitive conflict resolution, and eliminating gender discrimination towards women participating in peace processes and co-drafter of the UNSCR 1325 NAP (National Action Plan) Second Generation of Timor Leste.

Tecla was one of the lead mediators and facilitators for internally displaced persons who worked with Timor-Leste’s Ministry of Social Solidarity during the country’s 2006 Crisis Reintegration Process. Between 2009 to 2017, Tecla was engaged in several UNDP programs focusing on building Mechanisms for Social Cohesion in Timor Leste, utilizing both local and national peacebuilding networks to manage and prevent conflict from reemerging, and providing spaces for women’s participation in peacebuilding efforts. She is also a consultant to international organizations like Bridging Peoples, Integrated Risk Management Associates LLC (IRMA), Syspons Germany, DevTech System, UN World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) and United Nations Volunteers (UNV) working towards development and sustainability.

Her work in promoting the inclusion and meaningful participation of women as mediators and negotiators, from access to justice, human rights to peace and security have been recognized and featured in Geneva on Women4Multilateralism by the Delegation of EU to the UN and Permanent Mission of Gabon on 8 March 2022 in the occasion of International Women’s Day together with first Timorese Woman Ms. Rosa Muki Bonaparte as a frontliner of human rights defenders for self-determination of Timor Leste.