Africa

International Day for People of African Descent

The International Day for People of African Descent will be celebrated for the first time on 31 August 2021. Through this Observance the United Nations aims to promote the extraordinary contributions of the African diaspora around the world and to eliminate all forms of discrimination against people of African descent.

International days reflect the values that society shares. All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and have the potential to contribute constructively to the development and well-being of their societies. Any doctrine of racial superiority is scientifically false, morally condemnable, socially unjust, and dangerous and must be rejected, together with theories that attempt to determine the existence of separate human races.

The United Nations strongly condemns the continuing violent practices and excessive use of force by law enforcement agencies against Africans and people of African descent and condemns structural racism in criminal justice systems around the world. The Organization further acknowledges the Transatlantic Slave Trade as one of the darkest chapters in our human history and upholds human dignity and equality for the victims of slavery, the slave trade and colonialism, in particular people of African descent in the African diaspora.

Learn more about how and why the UN commemorates this observance at un.org/en/observances/african-descent-day.

For further information on the International Decade for “People of African Descent: recognition, justice and development” (2015-2024), please visit un.org/en/observances/decade-people-african-descent.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org

From COP22 to COP26: The Congo Basin Blue Fund–An African and a global issue

Ahead of the upcoming COP26 summit in Glasgow in November 2021, the Brazzaville Foundation will gather high-level speakers to discuss the importance of COP26 for the Congo Basin, while highlighting the initiatives embodied within the Congo Basin Blue Fund’s vision. Interpretation in French/English.
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En préparation du sommet de la COP 26 qui se tiendra à Glasgow en novembre 2021, la Fondation Brazzaville réunira des intervenants de haut niveau pour discuter de l’importance de la COP 26 pour le Bassin du Congo, tout en mettant en avant les initiatives incarnées par la vision du Fonds Bleu pour le Bassin du Congo. Interprétation en français/anglais.

Register here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_ZWkXnv2FTb-5navoSqbyoA

Why?

  • The Congo and its tributaries are a vital resource for all the countries of the Congo Basin
  • The Basin holds 8% of the world’s forest-based carbon, so it also has a key role to play in helping to prevent global warming
  • The Blue Fund for the Congo Basin is a major sustainable development initiative designed to reduce the pressure to exploit the forests of the Congo Basin and thus mitigate the impact of global warming by promoting alternative economic development using the resources of the Congo River and its tributaries

The purpose of the Blue Fund for the Congo Basin is to generate sustainable economic development for the peoples of the region while reducing deforestation – for the Congo Basin countries, but also a global priority as a carbon sink.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit  ngocsdvienna.org.

A gathering to foster the basic principles of a new approach for a fairer and more inclusive Digital Society

Grand Conversation: 

A gathering to foster the basic principles of a new approach for a fairer and more inclusive Digital Society

21 June 2021, Monday

Opening 6:00 AM PDT | 9:00 AM EDT | 2:00 PM WEST | 3:00 PM CEST | 4:00 PM EAT

Watch live on facebook.com/occam.milano.

This year 2021 is turning out to be rich in mutations. People are taking back their hopes and activities after the dark months of the Covid confinement. The great rendezvous of G7, G20 and COP26 are proving to be rich in contents and looks promising in terms of a step towards new global assets. The “Next Generation EU” Plan aims at reinforcing not only the new generation, but also at reforming countries in a more just and efficient way. The wind of digitalization blows strong and gives the feeling of a new world in gestation. All of us understand that we can be the protagonists: this is the reason for this Grand Conversation and the invitation to take part to actively discuss how to build the future rather than being a passive audience

21 June 2021

Live on facebook.com/occam.milano

This year 2021 is turning out to be rich in mutations. People are taking back their hopes and activities after the dark
months of the Covid confinement. The great rendez-vous of G7, G20 and COP26 are proving to be rich in contents and
looks promising in terms of a step towards new global assets. The “Next Generation EU” Plan aims at reinforcing not only
the new generation, but also at reforming countries in a more just and efficient way.
The wind of digitalization blows strong and gives the feeling of a new world in gestation. All of us understand that we can
be the protagonists: this is the reason for this Grand Conversation and the invitation to take part to actively discuss how to
build the future rather than being a passive audience.

Preliminary Agenda

Opening 6:00 AM PDT 9:00 AM EDT 2:00 PM WEST 3:00 PM CEST 4:00 PM EAT
Greetings: Daniela Bas, Director, UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs – Division for Inclusive Social Development, USA
Maurizio Molinari, Director, European Parliament Office in Milan, Italy
General introduction: Pierpaolo Saporito, President, OCCAM and Infopoverty Programme, Italy

Session 1: Policies and Strategies Fostering the Next Digital Society

We are living in a moment of gestation towards new forms of society that are arising all over the world in different shapes, operated by digital
innovations that are now part of the common practices of life, work and governance. They are growing up in their global assets to give life to the Next Digital Society.

Daniela Rondinelli, Member of the European Parliament, Commission on Employment and Social Affairs, Belgium
Uma Rani, Senior Economist, International Labour Organization (UN-ILO), Switzerland
George Hara, Special Advisor, Cabinet Office of the Prime Minister of Japan
Liberato C. Bautista, President, Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO), USA

Session 2: The New Post-Covid Paradigm

The Covid-19 emergency is still pressing, imposing a hard change of behaviour to the society. After the pandemic, other priorities will emerge in the field of health security and in the expansion of human relationships, thanks to the increased digital opportunities. The whole world is now connected, and the ancient North-South gap can be easily overcome, changing the paradigm from charity and support, to transferring knowledge and competences. Africa woke up and started producing many innovations adaptable to its context without the influence of big, for-profit multinational enterprises. This should be a further motivation to renew win-win collaborations. How can emerging countries enter the digital development process? How to exploit human and material resources that are pivotal for the industrial development?Tony Ojobo,

President, African ICT Foundation, Nigeria
Nicolas Boissez, Head of Communication and External Relations, Fondation Hirondelle, Switzerland
Sofia Khadiri, Innovation Manager, LDV20 – Sparkasse, Italy
Andrea Cuomo, President Sacertis Knowledge, IW Bank, Switzerland

Session 3: e-Services for Development

The flow of change is exposed to different accelerations: enterprises are putting in place codes of conduct; governments are understanding how to use them, especially in the post-pandemic phase; consumers are still very much depending on the global supply. Much space can and must be covered by digital innovations to tackle the needs of consumers and the society as a whole, in fields such as health, education, jobs, agriculture, creative production. The aim is to ensure an e-welfare able to grant a dignified lifestyle and access to jobs for every individual.

Food Security and Agriculture
Jawoo Koo, Senior Research Fellow, International Food Policy Research Institute, USA
Giulia Bartezzaghi, Director, Food Sustainability Observatory – Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Giovanna Seddaiu, Project Coordinator, EWA-BELT EU Horizon2020 Project, Italy

Telemedicine
Francesco Sicurello, President, International Institute of Telemedicine, Italy
Claudio Azzolini, Professor Emeritus, University of Insubria, Italy
Fabrizio Conicella, General Manager, OpenZone, Italy
Hassan Ghazal, Founder and President, Moroccan Society for Telemedicine and e-Health, Morocco

Education

Toky Ravoavy, NGO Ligne Verte, Madagascar
David Neely, President, Affecting Change International, USA
Michael Mathews, Vice-President for Innovation and Technology, Oral Roberts University, USA

Session 4: How the Digital Communication can Drive the Process to Envisage a New, Better Digital Society

Cinema always anticipated new, visionary societies: what we live now was already done in films. The audio-visual language became universal, a new koiné, and everyone can be a producer, diffuser and consumer. Billions of movies are uploaded every day on the platforms, and the virtual world creates the reality. How to empower this collective creativity towards trends able to register and feed new aspirations of young people, in open dimensions that even democracy can benefit of?

Melita Zajc, Associate Professor of Media Communication, AMEU ISH Ljubljana, Slovenia
Jasmina Bojic, Founder and Director, UN Association Film Festival, USA
Firdaus Kharas, Founder, Chocolate Moose Media, USA
Giacomo Mazzone, Secretary-General, Eurovisioni, Italy

Roundtable: New Approaches to Build the Next Digital Society

The ancient régime is dying, and we need to find new perspectives, opening to younger generations to allow the growth of a world based on their vision. Traditional, hierarchical systems based on archaic powers are inconsistent with the new digital nature. This new DNA shall be made explicit and become the instrument for the development of the new SDG-inspired society, where software and hardware merge for the transformation of ideas into things and for the creation of correct actions enhanced by artificial yet intimately human intelligences.Participants to the Conversation, plus:

Heidi Tworek, Senior Fellow, Center for International Governance Innovation, USA
Nicol Turner-Lee, Senior Fellow, Brookings, USA
Giuseppe Enne, Founder and Scientific Advisor, Desertification Research Centre, Italy

Conclusion 10:15 AM PDT | 1:15 PM EDT | 6:15 PM WEST | 7:15 PM CEST | 8:15 PM EAT

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org

Virtual CINE-ONU presents “The Great Green Wall”

To mark the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration and the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, the United Nations and the European Commission present: “The Great Green Wall.”

After a short introduction from Veronika Hunt Safrankova,  Head of Brussels Office, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and Camilla Nordheim-Larsen, Senior Partnerships and Resource Mobilization Coordinator at UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD) and Producer of the film, we will have a discussion and Q&A with the speakers below:

  • Elvis Tangem – Coordinator of The Great Green Wall Initiative for the Sahara and Sahel, African Union
  • Sandra Kramer – European Commission, Director Africa, Department of International Partnerships (DG INTPA)
  • Nora Berrahmouni – Senior forestry officer for Africa at the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) 
  • Deborah Seward (moderator) – Director of the UN Regional Information Centre (UNRIC)

About/Synopsis:

Imagine if we could restore a piece of land 3 times the size of the Great Barrier Reef! The African-led initiative referred to as the Great Green Wall, is growing an 8,000km natural ‘wonder of the world ‘ across the entire width of Africa. Discover how this project is providing a future for over 60 million people in the region.

The Great Green Wall provides a refreshing story of resilience, optimism and collective action. As Inna Modja passionately pursues an African Dream for a generation seeking to control their own destiny, she reminds us of the enormity of the task ahead and that time is not on our side. The resulting journey of hope, hardship and perseverance reveals our shared human condition, reflecting a deeper moral and existential question we all must confront: “Will we take action before it’s too late?

Watch the trailer here: youtube.com/watch?v=kB1qK_yBVxU

Register for the discussion here: https://fao.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_pxFKjLqyQxiJcKesdnZ3LQ

This event is organised in collaboration with Cine-ONU Vienna and Cine-ONU Geneva

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP. For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com.

The Climate Crisis and Developing Economies: A conversation with the Director of Power Shift Africa

WHAT THE WEST OWES THE REST

The Climate Crisis & Developing Economies: A conversation with Mohamed Adow, Director of Power Shift Africa

President Biden has ushered in the most ambitious climate plan in US history. But his wafer-slim majority in Congress gives him little time to push through his agenda before midterm elections in 18 months. The faith community must push for the realization of scaled up US climate ambition in coming months and years, following COP26 in November and in preparation for decisive 2024 Presidential elections.

Mohamed Adow is an international climate policy expert and ardent advocate for the people of developing nations – who are disproportionately affected by climate change but play almost no role in causing it. Hailing from a pastoralist community in Northern Kenya that faces increasing droughts, Adow’s experience on the frontlines of the climate crisis anchor his work as a voice for those most vulnerable to climate change. He is an outspoken and deeply respected leader among policy makers, NGOs, and the media on Africa and climate justice.

Mohamed is the Founder and Director of Power Shift Africa, a nongovernmental organization and thinktank based in Kenya that he formed in 2018 to mobilize climate action in Africa and shift climate and energy policies to zero carbon.

Join the event here: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86137939600?from=addon#success

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP.

Access Ends Hunger: How Can We Improve Access to Essential Resources?

This last year has highlighted incredible disparities in access to essential resources. The World Food Programme estimates that, due to COVID-19, 111 million more people are without access to sufficient nutrition. And UNICEF has determined that 500 million students are cut off from remote learning options at a time when remote learning is their only option.

Equitable access to critical resources such as education, technology and healthcare is an essential part of ending hunger. With access, people are able to leverage their own capacity and build better futures for themselves and their communities. So, how exactly does bridging gaps in access end hunger and poverty?

Join us Thursday, May 27 from 9:00 – 10:15 AM ET to find out!

Join Hunger Project leaders and our Goodwill Ambassador, Dora Nyambe, in a conversation about the importance of improving access to technology, health care and education. Importantly, they’ll also explore the challenges of removing barriers that prevent equitable access in Africa.

Speakers:

  • Irene Naikaali Ssentongo, Head of Programs in Uganda
  • Samuel Mutambo, National Program Director in Zambia
  • Dora Nyambe, Goodwill Ambassador to The Hunger Project
  • Moderated by our President & CEO Tim Prewitt

Learn more about the speakers and register for the event here.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org

COVID-19 and the Increasing Risks of Substandard and Falsified Pharmaceutical Products in Africa

Dear CoNGO members,

I am delighted to get in touch with you for the first time since the Brazzaville Foundation’s membership in November 2020 to the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO).

On the occasion of the upcoming World Health Assembly and Africa Day, the Brazzaville Foundation is pleased to invite you to an online high-level roundtable on Tuesday 25th May to discuss “Covid-19 and the Increasing Risks of Substandard and Falsified Pharmaceutical Products in Africa: A public health and security issue”. High-level speakers are expected such as Prof. Moustafa Mijiyawa, Minister of Health of the Republic of Togo; Michel Sidibé, African Union Special Envoy for the African Medicines Agency (AMA) and Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO Regional Director for Africa.

If you are interested in taking part in global health and security discussions, please register here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Z0sYZHfPQnWICzmnQY2r0g. Simultaneous translation will be available in French/English.

We are eager to share this event with you and we look forward to collaborating together in the future.

Best regards,

Richard Amalvy, Chief Executive, The Brazzaville Foundation

À l’occasion de la 74e Assemblée mondiale de la Santé et de la Journée de l’Afrique, la Fondation Brazzaville réunira des intervenants de haut niveau pour discuter des enjeux de santé publique et de sécurité liés aux risques croissants des médicaments falsifiés et de qualité inférieure dans le contexte de la pandémie de la COVID-19. Traduction simultanée en français/anglais.

Background notes:

Poor-quality medicines can be both falsified and substandard:

  • Falsified medicines are deliberately fake medical products. Criminals manufacture, traffic and sell fake products to unsuspecting customers.
  • Substandard medicines can be the result of poor manufacturing and quality-control practices in the manufacture or distribution of the product.

Poor-quality medicines lead to death and illness:

  • Both fake and substandard medicines pose a threat to public health because they can lead to death, additional illness in individuals, the spread of disease within a community and antibiotic resistance.
  • The link between the traffic in falsified medicines and organised crime has been well established by intelligence services and law enforcement agencies. They are smuggled onto markets using the same routes and techniques as drug, weapon, or human trafficking.
  • Transnational organised crime also funds terrorism, destabilising countries and weakening state structures.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Drugs-NY, please visit nyngoc.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org

Same Storm Different Boats: Telling the African Climate Story

Youth climate activism has continued to raise the consciousness of the urgency with which public and political action on the climate crisis is required.

The continent of Africa bears the brunt of the impact of the climate crisis and young Africans are at the frontline of climate action, however, they are not seen on the front page (and sometimes even deleted from the front page), nor are their voices heard during the debates on climate change.

What will it take to get their voices to the table? What do they offer to the conversations? and what are they optimistic about?

Our Chairperson, Wanjira Maathai will host Greta Thunberg, a  young climate and environmental activist from Sweden, Elizabeth Wathuti, a Kenyan environment and climate activist, Vanessa Nakate, a  young climate justice activist from Uganda, Olumide Idowu, an environmental and climate activist from Nigeria.  and Prof. Youba Sokona, a veteran scientist in addressing energy,  environment and sustainable development in Africa.

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

Bridging the Gap: Fiscal Justice for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights in Africa

Christian Aid invites you to join our webinar on Wednesday 5th May, 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm BST.  We’ll have a panel of experts from UNFPA, FEMNET, ACT Alliance and World YWCA join us to discuss how fiscal justice can help overcome barriers to sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR).  In 2019, we brought together advocates of fiscal justice and of sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) in researching how progressive fiscal policies can help close the gaps in financing and delivery of SRHR.  We’ve published the findings in this briefing: Bridging the Gap.

Now, at a time when access to SRHR is needed more than ever, there are concerns that limited resources are being redirected to other priorities, exacerbating the gendered impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic. Please join us to discuss what can be done.

Please circulate this to your networks and register for our event here to receive the zoom link:

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-NY, please visit ngocsw.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch.

Compassion, Commitment, and Innovation: A Symposium on Onchocerciasis Control in Africa

Bruce Benton’s book, Riverblindness in Africa: Taming the Lion’s Stare (2020), documents the origins, stories, successes, and challenges of controlling, and eventually eliminating, onchocerciasis, a widespread and debilitating disease in Africa. This event probes dimensions of the human side of the onchocerciasis-control story, including the role of compassion and the importance of trust. It examines how compassion, commitment, and innovation, which have been central to the long-term success of onchocerciasis control, can lead to completion of that effort in Africa.

Register here: https://georgetown.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_fZyB5O3yR3asKzMfU38JCQ

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee for Rare Diseases, please visit ngocommitteerarediseases.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org.

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