gender equity

United Nations Observance of International Women’s Day 2021

Dear colleagues,

UN Women is pleased to invite you to the United Nations Observance of International Women’s Day 2021. The event will take place virtually on Monday, 8 March 2021 from 10 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. EST. 

To facilitate the planning of the event, kindly RSVP at the following link: https://unwomen-iwd2021.eventbrite.com

Aligned with the priority theme of the 65th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, the theme for the United Nations Observance of International Women’s Day 2021 is “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world, on the way to the Generation Equality Forum.” In addition to celebrating the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the event will also ‘lift the curtain’ and bring increased attention to this year’s Generation Equality Forums in Mexico City (29-31 March 2021) and Paris (June 2021).

The Observance will feature high-level dignitaries from the United Nations and governments, as well as other gender equality advocates and champions. Speakers including the Secretary-General of the United Nations, the Executive Director of UN Women and Eva Longoria will offer reflections on the day’s theme and amplify the work of the upcoming Generation Equality Forums. The event will also include musical performances by Angelica Hale, the Pihcintu Chorus, and Broadway singers.

This colour for International Women’s Day 2021 is yellow. The hashtags for social media will be #IWD2021 and #InternationalWomensDay.

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CoNGO Notes: 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-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org.

Are women making any progress in participation in leadership and decision-making? Three NGO leaders ask on the eve of 2021 International Women’s Day

New York, 5 March 2021 (CoNGO InfoNews) – “Women enable a just, equitable and peaceful world,” said the presidents of Soroptimist International (Sharon Fisher), International Alliance of Women (Cheryl Hayles), and Associated Country Women of the World (Magdie de Kock) in a joint statement they issued on the occasion of the 2021 International Women’s Day on March 8.

“Women and girls of all ages deserve a seat at the table in public life, leadership and decision-making. Women belong in all places where decisions are being made. To make that a reality, all states, the private sector, civil society, non-governmental organizations, and other stakeholders must work in collaboration,” the women leaders asserted.

The statement also called on the sixty-fifth session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW65) to take leadership in the development and implementation of new laws, regulations and social justice programmes that respond to women’s and girls’ under-participation and under-representation in leadership. The theme of CSW65 is focused on women in public life and equal participation in decision-making.

The joint statement was warmly received by Liberato Bautista, the president of the Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations (CoNGO), who helped produce it. The three organizations issuing the statement are full members of CoNGO. Soroptimist International and International Alliance of Women are current members of the CoNGO Board.

“Joint statements are an effective means of conveying to the United Nations our collective understandings of, and agreements and unities, as segments of civil society, on substantive issues that are on the UN agenda,” Bautista said. “Consultation and collaboration are valued good NGO practices,” he added.

Other CoNGO members that have issued statements on the International Women’s Day include the International Council of Women and the Universal Esperanto Association.A statement issued on November 15, 2020 and submitted to the CSW65 by members of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women Vienna, underscored many of the points raised by these statements.

NGO concerns on the overall agenda of gender equality, equity and justice are highlighted once again this year at the NGO CSW FORUM65 with varied program offerings starting on March 14 and ending on March 26.

See related story by International Alliance of Women here and by Soroptimist International here.

Fifth Session of the United Nations Environment Assembly

2021 Theme: Strengthening Actions for Nature to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals

The fifth session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-5) provides leadership, catalyzes, intergovernmental actions on the environment, and contributes to the implementation of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, and based broad consultations with Member States and Stakeholders, the UNEA Bureau decided on 8 October 2020 that UNEA-5 should take place in a two-step approach. The first session of UNEA-5 will be conducted virtually on 22-23 February 2021 with a revised and streamlined agenda that will focus on urgent and procedural decisions. Substantive matters that require in-depth negotiations will be deferred to a resumed in-person session of UNEA-5 in February 2022 in a format to be defined and agreed on at a later stage.

The theme calls for strengthened action to protect and restore nature and the nature-based solutions to achieve the SDGs in its three complementary dimensions (social, economic and environmental). UNEA-5 provides Member States and stakeholders with a platform for sharing and implementing successful approaches that contribute to the achievement of the environmental dimension of the 2030 Agenda and the SDGs, including the goals relation to the eradication of poverty and sustainable patterns of consumption and production. UNEA-5 will also provide an opportunity for Member States and Stakeholders to take ambitious steps towards building back better and greener by ensuring that investments in economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic contribute to sustainable development.

The President of the UN Environment Assembly, in close cooperation with UNEA Bureau and the Committee of Permanent Representatives and its Bureau will continue to work in an open and participatory manner to ensure a successful and impactful two-step UNEA-5.

For further information, contact the UNEP Secretariat at unep-sgb@un.org.

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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 Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

NGO CSW65 Youth Preparation Series: Presentation Skills Workshop

NGO CSW65 Youth Preparation Series: Presentation Skills Workshop

This event is part of NGO CSW-New York’s Youth Preparation Series for youth leaders and young professionals, leading up to NGO CSW65.

Led by Jenni Prisk, this session will provide you with techniques and skills to present your key messages with clarity, impact and poise, tips for online presentation, strengthen your voice in professional settings.

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-New York, please visit ngocsw.org.  For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org. 

[UN Observance] International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation

Each year on February 6, the United Nations Commemorates the International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation.

Over 200 million girls and women alive today have experienced FGM. In 2019, an estimated 4.1 million girls were at risk of being cut. In 25 countries where FGM is routinely practiced and data are available, an estimated 68 million girls will be cut between 2015 and 2030 unless concerted and accelerated action is taken.

To learn more about UNFPA & UNICEF’s Joint Programme to Eliminate Female Genital Mutilation, currently in Phase III, click here.

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CoNGO Notes: 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-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org.

NGO CSW65 Youth Preparation Series: Youth Activists Space

Join the NGO Committee on Status of Women-New York’s Youth Leaders and Young Professionals in preparing for NGO CSW65!

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZcqceGorDwiHNCmxAmEdQ2NAAPHiABBzVAP

This event will feature young people from around the world sharing their work at the grassroots level.

Interested participants are asked to consider:

Have you had a powerful experience in your gender justice work?
Do you have an artistic component to your advocacy such as slam poetry, song, story?
What inspires you to work for gender equality?

Share your work, your story, your inspiration with us. We want to get to know you and invite you to share at our Youth Activist event. Volunteer to share for a 2 minute time slot using the same link above.

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CoNGO Notes: 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-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org

International Day of Education: Recover & Revitalize Education for the COVID-19 generation

International Day of Education: Recover and revitalize education for the COVID-19 generation 

Monday 25 January 2021, 8am – 11am EST

Website: en.unesco.org/commemorations/educationday

RSVP link: on.unesco.org/IDEzoom

Watch online at webtv.un.org/ and use hashtags #PowerEducation #EducationDay

This third International Education Day occurs in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic that led to a global learning disruption of unprecedented scale and severity. The closure of schools, universities and other learning institutions, as well as the interruption of many literacy and lifelong learning programmes, has affected the lives of 1.6 billion students in over 190 countries. As a new year begins, now is the time to step up collaboration and international solidarity to place education and lifelong learning at the centre of the recovery and the transformation towards more inclusive, safe and sustainable societies.

This event will highlight the urgency to mobilize funding for education; give voice to ‘community heroes’ who acted to leave no learner behind during school closures and present innovations that pave the way towards more resilient and inclusive education systems. The celebration of International Education Day by UNESCO will be organized in partnership with several partners, including the Global Partnership for Education and the Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies (CRI), and feature the participation of partners from the Global Education Coalition.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee for Rare Diseases, please visit ngocommitteerarediseases.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Children’s Rights, please visit childrightsny.org.

Commitments made 25 years ago in Beijing not matched by action, investments and accountability, NGO Committee on Status of Women Vienna asserts in a statement

Vienna, Austria, 28 January 2021 (CoNGO InfoNews) – “Gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls are inextricably linked to achieving sustainable development for all. We acknowledge the recognition by global leaders that the commitments made 25 years ago in Beijing have not been matched by action, investments and accountability. We welcome the commitment of governments to significantly accelerate concrete actions towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal #5, Gender Equality,” says the opening paragraph of a statement by members of the NGO Committee on Status of Women Vienna submitted to the sixty-fifth session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (UN CSW).

Twenty-two non-governmental organizations in consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council who are members of the NGO Committee joined to submit the statement (E/CN.6/2021/NGO/16).

This year’s session is a follow-up to the Fourth World Conference on Women and to the twenty-third special session of the General Assembly entitled “Women 2000: gender equality.” It will meet from 15 March 2021 and closes on 26 March.

Among the Committee’s fifteen calls to UN member states is the enactment of  “policies and commit funds to enable women’s full participation in public life, including: elimination of all discriminatory laws, structural barriers, social norms and gender stereotypes; strengthening institutions to promote gender equality; providing child care and parental leave to enable the redistribution of care work in households; recognizing the value of women’s unpaid care work in gross domestic product or income account indicators.”

The NGO Committee on Status of Women Vienna is one of 37 substantive and regional committees of CoNGO.

Open here for the full statement.

The International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development 2021: Inclusively Creative, for Global Recovery

Setting the Scene

· The resolution 74/198 on International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development, 2021, was envisioned as a rallying point behind the development of a creative economy as a way to promote sustained and inclusive economic growth, foster innovation and provide opportunities, benefits and empowerment for all and respect for all human rights.

· With the COVID-19 pandemic, there are some boom and bust creative industries. Some industries have shown tremendous growth, such as virtual music and apps development; some industries face tremendous challenges, for instance, industries dependent on the tourism sector, such as performing arts and crafts.

· Most creative industry players are either small-medium enterprises, self-employed people, and freelancers, who have more limited financial capacity to weather the impacts of a prolonged crisis.

· It is important to ensure a meaningful and impactful implementation of the International Year of Creative Economy for Sustainable Development toward a sustainable and resilient recovery by among others optimizing opportunism and addressing main challenges in creative economy.

The virtual side event will discuss:

· Outcome of the Friends of Creative Economy (FCE) Meeting 2020 held on 11-12 November 2020.

· Outcome of the Creative Forum held on 30 November 2020.

· Implementation of the resolution, including roadmap for the implementation of the resolution.

· Expectation by countries, possible collaborations, relevant events, with a summary of the discussion.

On Dec. 9, join the Zoom meeting here

Agenda

9:00 – 9:10 Opening Remark by H.E. Dian Triansyah Djani, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations in New York

9:10 – 9:50 Panel Discussion
Mr. Candra Negara, Director for Inter-Institutional Relations, Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy, Indonesia

  • Briefing on the outcome of the Friends of Creative Economy (FCE) Meeting 2020

Ms. Petra Kežman – Head of Department for Public Diplomacy and International Cooperation in Culture, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia

  • Briefing on the International Conference, “Symptoms of Creativity”

Marisa Henderson, PhD – Chief, Creative Economy, Division of International Trade and Commodities, UNCTAD

  • Implementation of Resolution 74/198

Mr. Ernesto Ottone – Assistant-Director General for Culture, UNESCO

9:50 – 10:25 Discussion
10:25 – 10:30 Virtual Photo Session & Closing

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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-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-New York, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN.

International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women

The UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE Campaign to End Violence against Women is pleased to invite you to the United Nations Official Commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Date: 25 November 2020 | Time: 10:00 – 11:30 AM (EST)

The Official Commemoration of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women will be a virtual multi-stakeholder event with the participation of high-level representatives of Member States, United Nations agencies, Goodwill Ambassadors, and civil society organizations. In the current context of COVID-19 and in line with the SG Political Engagement Strategy on Gender-Based Violence, the event will:

  • Highlight achievements and initiate additional commitments by Member States on the issue of ending violence against women;
  • Honour women’s organizations as first responders and acknowledge their leadership in ending violence; and
  • Activate UN-wide mobilization under the umbrella of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence campaign and promote zero tolerance across all spheres of society everywhere.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres will participate live alongside UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and UNFPA Executive Director Natalia Kanem. Heads of State, UN Women Goodwill Ambassadors Ms. Nicole Kidman and Ms. Cindy Bishop; SDG Advocate, UNODC Goodwill Ambassador and Nobel Peace Prize Winner Ms. Nadia Murad; and Nobel Peace Prize Nominee and Rise Founder Ms. Amanda Nguyen will participate via video.The event will be co-hosted by Zahra Al Hilaly and Stuart Moir and feature a performance by Ensemble Corona.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-New York, please visit ngocsw.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org.

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