A campaign which aims to encourage women to vote for independence in the forthcoming referendum is being launched with support from a key member of Jack McConnell's team.
Jeane Freeman, who was chief of staff to Mr McConnell when he was Labour first minister, said women should be "front and central" in the debate about Scotland's future.
Ms Freeman spoke ahead of the launch of Women for Independence, which also has the backing of former Scottish Socialist Party MSPs Rosie Kane and Carolyn Leckie, as well as children's author Lari Don.
The new group will work alongside the official Yes Scotland campaign, which has been set up to encourage people to vote in favour of independence in the planned 2014 referendum.
Ms Freeman said: "I want women to be front and central in this debate. I want to hear what women up and down the country have to say and to hear their worries and their hopes. And I want to play my part in persuading other women, that not only is an independent Scotland possible, but that it's our best opportunity to realise our hopes and dreams for our families and communities."
Meanwhile, Ms Leckie, a founding member of Women for Independence, said the group wanted to "bring women together to organise for our own independence as well as that of the nation".
Women for Independence wants to appeal to females of all backgrounds and ages, including those who are members of political parties and those who are not.
Ms Leckie added: "I love that we intend to reach out to all women - stretching over pre-existing boundaries of parties, geography, social group, identities."
The former MSP continued: "What we are doing is unique - creating a network for women, by women which will make space for women who don't necessarily engage with political processes other than to vote, to make their voices heard and their views known.
"Women for Independence aims to encourage more women to vote yes by convincing them that independence isn't just for Scotland, it's for them too. Independence is the best chance we have to create a better future for women, for children and for everyone in Scotland."