Today, despite centuries of activism and mobilisations, women and non-binary people continue to remain disadvantaged in almost every sphere – from “public life” to the “shadow pandemic” of gender-based violence.
Every year on March 8, the International Women’s Day is commemorated. What do women think about this famous anniversary, first honored 1911 in European countries? As I cannot speak for other women, I share with you my personal reflections on this special day, bringing in a developmental perspective.
International Women’s Day is always an occasion to celebrate strong women and an important day in the global calendar to highlight the gender injustices still lingering in every part of the world.
International Women's Day pays tribute to the achievements of women worldwide and reminds us what still needs to be done for full gender equality. In 2021, we are taking stock of the many ways in which COVID-19 has disproportionately affected women and girls around the world.
Africa’s population will double by 2050 if growth rates continue their trajectory, but the creation of jobs is not keeping pace, with up to five times more young people seeking employment each year as there are new posts to fill. And, on top of this, the COVID pandemic is plunging Africa into its first recession in 25 years.
Education Cannot Wait (ECW
), the Inter-agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE
) and the United Nations Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI
), today launched a new toolkit
to support stronger integration of gender equality in education responses for children and youth in countries affected by emergencies and protracted crises.
As a member of the second wave of the feminist movement who were also the first generation of women to receive positions of leadership, I recall the prejudices and biases that framed our experience. Women rarely were put in charge of “hard” core issues, only what were termed “soft” ones in keeping with their role as nurturer and carer. When they were present in the Board room, they were often silent. When they spoke, they were inevitably spoken over. It was the exceptional woman who could navigate the corridors of corporate culture, male expectations, and a workplace that was unsympathetic to her dual burden.
Back in the 1990s, the discovery of antiretrovirals offered a ray of hope to save people’s lives from the HIV epidemic. Over this decade, people living with HIV benefited from the scientific advances and began to have longer, healthier and more productive lives. However, almost all the beneficiaries were from rich countries in the global north. As a result, about nine million people died by the year 2000 due to the inequality in accessing these life-saving medicines.
During the COVID19 lockdown, there has been an approximate 25% increase in domestic abuse, dubbed by the United Nations as the ‘pandemic within a pandemic’. While the home is perceived as a secure place, for domestic abuse victims battling the pandemic is equally and increasingly unsafe. A parasol of protection is needed to rehabilitate victims of abuse starting from detection, reaching out, providing help and support.
Women living in rural India and those belonging to marginalised communities faced an enormous burden during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns, including domestic violence, loss of financial assistance and income, says Rehana Adeeb, a grassroots Muslim woman leader and activist.
In the lead up to International Women’s Day, the Inter-agency Network for Education in Emergencies (INEE), Education Cannot Wait (ECW) and the UN Girls’ Education Initiative (UNGEI), are launching a new core resource package for gender in education in emergencies: the ‘EiE-GenKit’!
Earlier this month, and in December 2020 the Government of Samoa conducted operations that resulted in the confiscation of a total of 1,400 grams of methamphetamine at the border, smuggled from the US.
The law enforcement officials (from the Ministry of Customs and Revenue and the Ministry of Police and Prisons) that intercepted these drugs deserve congratulations for their professionalism and skill. Meth is destructive and harmful - and it is good to see this potential threat removed from the community.
Myanmar’s State Counsellor
was recently deposed and arrested along with other leaders of her ruling party – National League for Democracy
(NLD). The Leader of Tatmadaw
, the Military, Min Aung Hlaing, announced that elections in November last year had been fraudulent and in an “effort to save democracy” the military would now rule the nation for at least one year, until new elections could be organised. Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi is accused of “importing ten or more walkie-talkies” and of violating the nation’s “Natural Disaster Law”. Some might agree that Suu Kyi deserves to be locked up. As an admired role model and Nobel Peace Prize winner, she was globally depicted as an almost saintlike being, canonized in movies like Luc Bessons’s The Lady
. U.S. Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, watched the movie before she in 2011 visited Suu Kyi, who by then had spent altogether fifteen years in house imprisonment, deprived of the company of an ailing and eventually dying husband and two sons. In spite of her forced isolation she became an eloquent representative for her compatriots’ resistance and perseverance under almost fifty years of military dictatorship.
Since her husband Abrahm Soreng died two years ago, 70-year-old Veronica Kerketa doesn't get the chance to talk in her mother tongue at home. None of her children or grandchildren speak the Kharia language.
The past year is one that few of us will forget. While the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic have played out unevenly across Asia and the Pacific, the region has been spared many of the worst effects seen in other parts of the world. The pandemic has reminded us that a reliable and uninterrupted energy supply is critical to managing this crisis.
Bangladeshis at the present time share a modicum of justifiable pride in the fact that the world merits this country worth watching in terms of its economic potentials. To my mind , we have reached this stage for the following reasons: First, effective utilization of early foreign assistance; second a steady ,albeit sustained, move away from a near -socialistic to an open and liberal economy; third , a shift from agriculture to manufacturing as land-space shrank to accommodate urbanization; fourth , an unleashing of remarkable entrepreneurial spirit among private sector captains of industry, as evidenced in the Ready Made Garments industry: fifth, the prevalence of a vibrant civil society intellectually aiding the social transformation with its focus on health, education, and gender issues: and finally ,a long period of political stability notwithstanding the traditional predilections of Bengali socio-political activism.
Education Cannot Wait’s (ECW) COVID-19 emergency response
has reached over 9 million children and youth (47% girls) to date. ECW’s COVID-19 emergency grants span across 33 crisis-affected countries/emergency contexts.
School closings and the varied impacts of remote learning amid the COVID-19 pandemic are a global challenge. Educators worldwide have been struggling to meet contemporary educational standards in this environment. But this challenge is followed by yet another: how to assess the readiness of students to resume in-school education when schools open. At BRAC, the international nongovernmental organization that operates 25,000 schools in Bangladesh, serving 750,000 students, we have developed an approach that could be helpful.
How much is a girl worth? If you are Maja, the answer is a chicken, a six-pack of beer and 100 euros.
That is how much her family, living in a Roma settlement in Serbia, received in exchange for her hand “in marriage.” She was 11 years old at the time. “They benefited maybe a month from it, and I was left with a problem for my whole life,” Maja, now 18, said.
It was a joyful, tearful celebration in the early morning hours of Dec. 30, 2020 for countless Argentinians when they heard the news: the senate had legalized terminations up to 14 weeks of pregnancy. Prior to this, activists have said that more than 3,000 women died of botched, illegal abortions since 1983. And across the Latin American and Caribbean (LAC) region, this renewed sense of optimism was compounded after President Joe Biden rescinded
what is known as the “global gag rule,” which essentially denied funding to international non-profit organizations that provided abortion counseling or referrals.
WHO and UNICEF have a long, deep and very special relationship. Neither of us could do what we do without the other.
UNICEF’s success is WHO’s success, and we are proud to be your partner on so many issues: Ebola, polio, maternal health, nutrition, infection prevention and control, primary health care – the list is long.