Keynote Address on the State of the World – HLPF July 17, 2017

Sec GenThe second part of the HLPF (High Level Political Forum) the High Level Ministerial Meeting began on Monday July 17th.  UN Secretary General António Guterres delivered a STATEMENT  on his understanding of the State of the World.  Mixed picture, deficit of trust, the need to find more legal avenues for migrants, financing development, and foresee what is coming.  Secretary General concluded  “And I think that looking at this Assembly, one can only be enthusiastic about the fact that there is a very strong commitment not only to the implementation of the agenda but a very strong affirmation of support to multilateral governance as the way to lead the 2030 Agenda respecting the leadership of member states but recognising that only working together we can rebuild the trust that is needed and we can make the Agenda 2030 that factor that brings the fair globalisation the world needs in the present times.”

This was followed by Jeffery Sachs with a key note address to the Member States. Access the  WEBCAST marker 34.45 to hear for yourself.  He started with the good news “the world output this year will be estimated by the World Bank at 127 trillion dollars – that is 17,000.00 dollars for every man, women and child on the planet.  If you prefer to read Meeting Coverage at the UN provides you that  opportunity.

“Despite the extraordinary wealth in the world, 1 billion people still struggled to survive every day, he said.  In the United States, the coal, oil and gas lobby had contributed $100 million in the election cycle.  “That is why we pulled out of our Climate Agreement,” he added, emphasizing that the world was witnessing the “corruption of our future”.”

Some of the forces referred to are directly responsible for the loss of life of Women Human Rights Defenders.  This fact was recognized in an action during week one.  A Press Release  names some of the women and provides background.  I was excited to see Dorothy Stang, a Sister of Notre Dame De Namur on the list.  She was murdered in 2005   SEE for more information

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Thanks to the Women Major Group for all they organized and prepared during this HLPF 2017.  The graphics are priceless, their statements clear and focused and more importantly on target.  10 Priorities for the Ministerial Declaration of HLPF 2017

Women’s Spirituality – Pioneering and Transforming

 

???????????????????????????????Yesterday March 18th I had the privilege to moderate a panel entitled ‘Women’s Spirituality – Pioneering and Transforming’  This was a well attended event demonstrating clear interest in spirituality. It was hosted by the Society of Catholic Medical Missionaries,  aka, Medical Mission Sisters. Celine Paramundayil is their representative to the United Nations.  The event was co-sponsored by 11 other organizations.

The panelists were Miriam Therese Winter, Medical Mission Sister and Sr. Cristine Schenk, Congregations of St Joseph. Click here for the flyer for the event and bios of the speakers

???????????????????????????????Christine gave a historical context  – women in patriarchal households within the socio-political-spiritual-religious-prophetic tradition of the times of Jesus who was himself betrayed by his own political-religious institutions.  Christina then focused on the development of women’s leadership in the Graeco-Roman world, free woman, slave woman, freed woman, widows,  the house church and small business networks.

Miriam Therese in her presentation reviewed some concepts – ???????????????????????????????religion, spirituality, theology … calling for a paradigm of unity. Faith is something deeper than belief.  Faith is in the gut, in the imagination.  ‘I believe’ is patriarchal – tells us who God is. Reflections rooted in the real world, the world of now and the world of science demonstrates chaos, an evolution of consciousness and connection.  We are part of all that exists – not over and above but from within and of.  The chaos of the beginnings had an inherent capacity to organize itself.  We have the power to effect change by intentionality.  We don’t wipe out difference or impose a new order but in chaos there is a hint of the quantum reality.

The presentations were followed by lively discussion including a passionate call from a young woman for young women to engage and culminating with the following question ‘How have this same conversation with Member States present – Spirit transforming leadership into the future?’

 

Catherine Prendergast 2Catherine Prendergast, Daughters of Charity thanked the Medical Mission Sisters, Co-sponsors, panelists and participants, and brought the event to closure.

VIVAT are blessed to have a ‘camera person.’  I say a special word of thanks to Zelia Cordeiro. Great photographs!   You can enjoy them HERE

A Program that Works – NILS – Australia

Caroline Price, Mission, People and Culture Team, Australia shares the following story which was on commercial television last night about the No Interest Loans (NILS) program.

The program began in the early 1980s when the Sisters gave seed funding to start it.  Now it is a program worth millions of dollars and has the support of one of the national Banks and the Government.

Video Link Here      Congratulations Good Shepherd and NILS!

Concrete practical steps towards ending poverty!  ‘Fair and affordable finance and services’ and the last words from the commentator ‘A terrific caring service.’

Profits and Poverty: the economics of forced labour.

Profits and PovertyA new report from the ILO investigates the underlying factors that drive forced labour, of which a major one is illegal profits.  Figures will include a breakdown of profits by area of forced labour and by region. Per capita profits are highest in commercial sexual exploitation, which can be explained by the demand for such services and the prices clients ar willing to pay, and low capital investment and by the low operating costs associated with this activity.  Read more in  English    Spanish   French

How is forced labour defined?   A definition of forced labour enshrined in the ILO’s Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (29) adopted in 1930 reads ‘the definition encompasses all forms of work or service, whether formal or informal, legal or illegal. Forced labour also requires an element of coercion (“menace of penalty”) to distinguish it from labour exploitation more broadly. The free and informed consent of workers throughout the labour relationship is another important element of the definition. Convention No 29 requires member States to make forced labour a penal offense; hence the exaction of forced labour is not a minor labour law violation but a criminal act. As such, it is closely related to the concept of human trafficking as defined by the UN Protocol of 2000 to Prevent, suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, Supplementing the United Nations Convention Against Transnational Organized Crime. The Protocol makes trafficking in persona a criminal offence. All exploitative purposes of trafficking are covered by the ILO’s Forced Labour definition with the exception of trafficking for the purpose of the removal of organs. (page 3) 

Have you cast your vote in the ‘My World Survey’? Here is another oppoprtunity

MY WORLD GLOBAL WEEK OF ACTION 

World Youth Foundation (WYF) has joined force with the UN and became a committed partner for MY WORLD. It is an options survey which MY WORLD asks individuals which six of sixteen possible issues you think would make the most difference to your lives.  We seek your support to disseminate this campaign widely to get millions of people to VOTE. Together we can make it happen! The more we can engage, the more votes we drive, the more people around the world will participate in shaping the future of development. DON’T MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY.     To vote, click here

My World 2015

 

Empowering Women -Empowering Humanity: Picture it!

Beijing_Carousel_LetsGo jpg

Explanation of the logo.

As you can see, it is a contemporary expression of the Beijing dove, rising in flight, reflecting the aspirations and progress the Beijing platform represents. The flock of 3 birds is a reference to the three processes that are under way and reinforce each other to put renewed emphasis on gender equality, women’s rights and  women’s empowerment: MDGs, Beijing+20, and Post-2015.

UN Women today launched a major campaign in the lead-up to the commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the historic Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing. A year of activities around the world will aim to mobilize governments and citizens alike to picture a world where gender equality is a reality and to join a global conversation on empowering women to empower humanity.

Events will focus on achievements and gaps in gender equality and women’s empowerment since 189 governments adopted the 1995 Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. This visionary blueprint paves the way for women’s full and equal participation in all spheres of life and decision-making.

 “The Beijing Platform for Action is an unfulfilled promise to women and girls,” says UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka. “Our goal is straightforward: renewed commitment, strengthened action and increased resources to realize gender equality, women’s empowerment and the human rights of women and girls.”

The Beijing Women’s Conference drew an unprecedented 17,000 participants while 30,000 representatives attended the NGO Forum. Next year, in 2015, the United Nations will assess progress on implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action over the past 20 years, based on national reports currently being prepared by UN Member States.

The campaign kicks off with an all-day Tweetathon spanning the globe. Participating groups will include the UN, Lean In, the World YWCA, the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, Half the Sky, the European Women’s Lobby, the Women’s Media Centre, Devex and other regional and national experts.

UN Women unveils a global information hub featuring diverse voices, testimonies of personal experiences and achievement, celebrity champions and a calendar to track Beijing+20 events. The HeforShe web platform spotlights prominent men standing up to end violence against women and advance equality. UN Women supports engagement through its network of country offices and release an interactive Facebook app, “Close the Gap”. You can find attached the editorial content of the campaign.

“This anniversary takes place at an historic moment,” stresses UN Women’s Mlambo-Ngucka, “as the nations of the world are coming together to accelerate progress to achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015 and define a new global development framework. We must seize this once-in-a-generation opportunity to position gender equality, women’s rights and women’s empowerment at the centre of the global agenda and make it a reality.”

Major campaign events are being planned around the world. This June, tens of thousands of people will gather in Sweden to advocate for the protection of the human rights of women and girls. In September, at the Climate Summit in New York, a special event will be held with women heads of State and activists. In India in November, men and boys will make a show of force for gender equality.

The formal commemoration of the 20th anniversary will take place during the 59th session of the Commission on the Status of Women and International Women’s Day 2015 will be dedicated to Beijing+20. A high-level commitment meeting is expected in September 2015.

UN Women Civil Society Section will inform CSOs about all these events and activities through a monthly Newsletter.

During the past two decades much progress has been made in women’s legal rights, educational achievements, and participation in public life. But much still remains to be done to address gender wage gaps and unequal opportunities, low representation of women in leadership in public office and the private sector, child marriage, rampant violence and other violations against women and girls.

“Today I call on everyone to be part of the solution,” says Ms Mlambo-Ngcuka. “Picture It! Together we can realize the promise of Beijing: equality between women and men.”

Best regards,

UN Women Civil Society Section

un_women_logo_en     Civil Society Section – UN Women

       220 East 42nd Street, 18th floor   New York, NY 10017

civil.society@unwomen.org      http://www.unwomen.org

 

This is the new Beijing+20 campaign website.  It is in three languages  English   French  Spanish    There are ten introductory stories, the second one is by a Working Group on Girls – WGG – Girl Advocate Christina.  Congratulations Christina!                  Christina