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Balkan women make inroads in peace and politics

Cross-posted from UN Women

With support from UN Women, women leaders in the Balkans are putting gender issues at the centre of politics and fueling women’s empowerment in order to bring peace and stability to the region.

Through the cracks of a tragic history, decades after the disintegration of Yugoslavia and the subsequent conflicts that engulfed the Balkans in the 1990s, a powerful group of women are uniting to overcome ethnic and political differences and build a better future. 

Braving dust storms, women plant seeds of hope at the Dadaab refugee camp

Cross-posted from UN Women

Turning dry lands into fertile fields, a livelihood project is helping Somali women refugees in Kenya make a living and prevent sexual and gender-based violence.

Women take part in a business management training workshop at the Ifo 2 camp in the Dadaab refugee complex. Photo: UN Women/Tabitha Icuga

In the world’s largest refugee complex — the sprawling Dadaab settlement in Kenya’s North Eastern Province —  women listen attentively during a business management workshop held at a hospital in one of its newest camps, Ifo 2. 

Cross-posted from UN Women

Turning dry lands into fertile fields, a livelihood project is helping Somali women refugees in Kenya make a living and prevent sexual and gender-based violence.

Women take part in a business management ...

In India’s garment factories, stitching clothes and a culture of non-violence

Cross-posted from UN Women

Viyakula Mary was born in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. She was first drawn to the issue of violence against women at the age of 16, when she heard that a member of her community had faced sexual harassment but had no prospect of justice.

Mary, now 39, works as a trainer for Social Awareness and Voluntary Education, a human rights organization based in Tirupur, a city in Tamil Nadu. She leads training sessions in six garment factories across the state aimed at reducing workplace sexual harassment. Her NGO is part of an innovative project focused on the garment supply chain that is led by Netherlands-based NGO Fair Wear Foundation, in partnership with garment ...

Cross-posted from UN Women

Viyakula Mary was born in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. She was first drawn to the issue of violence against women at the age of 16, when she heard that a ...

At the frontlines, Liberian women adopt new strategies in Ebola response

Cross-posted from UN Women

Radio host Justice Clarke and his guests sit in a semi-circular United Nations radio studio for a live discussion of ‘Ebola and Stigma’. This is a special edition of the UN Women-sponsored 12th Man radio talk-show, produced in partnership with UN Radio in Liberia — a show devoted to promoting men’s role in ending sexual and gender-based violence and helping empower women and girls.

However, considering the devastating emotional and psychological effects of the Ebola outbreak, the programme was modified to provide psychosocial support, targeting patients, health workers and the public, with a specific focus on the needs of women. Radio spots with messages on ending violence against women were also aired throughout the discussion.

“We know very ...

Cross-posted from UN Women

Radio host Justice Clarke and his guests sit in a semi-circular United Nations radio studio for a live discussion of ‘Ebola and Stigma’. This is a special edition of the UN Women-sponsored 12th ...

Safer markets for Pacific women vendors

Cross-posted from UN Women

It may not have been a regular part of her everyday business, but it seemed interesting so she decided to go along. For market vendor Rose Starlyn, attending a series of UN Women-run workshops in April and May 2014 in Honiara, the capital city of her native Solomon Islands, turned out to be the beginning of a journey. So far, that journey has seen her address an audience of more than 100 people, including politicians and diplomats, and be elected as the first chairperson of the newly formed Honiara Central Market Vendors Association.

“We can make a market that is a happy place for everyone,” Rose, a vibrant woman of 37, says with a broad smile. “A ...

Cross-posted from UN Women

It may not have been a regular part of her everyday business, but it seemed interesting so she decided to go along. For market vendor Rose Starlyn, attending a series of UN Women-run ...

“I bought a mattress and health insurance”

Cross-posted from UN Women

Kigali, Rwanda – On a sunny Tuesday in the Nyaruguru district of Rwanda’s South Province, 75 women and men gather in their best clothes to graduate from the UN Women-supported Farmer Field School programme. They are among 350 farmers who have undergone a six-month course to learn modern agricultural techniques for their wheat and Irish potato crops.

“You can’t even compare the opportunities as an individual to those of being in a group,” said graduate Donata Nukabayiza. “It is very difficult as an individual farmer to get subsidies or even resources like fertilizer. But there is power in a group. It is much easier because the land is consolidated, and you can obtain advice, agricultural services, or ...

Cross-posted from UN Women

Kigali, Rwanda – On a sunny Tuesday in the Nyaruguru district of Rwanda’s South Province, 75 women and men gather in their best clothes to graduate from the UN Women-supported Farmer Field School ...

Expert’s take: Bringing light to the darkest places

Cross-posted from UN Women

Gender and Humanitarian Advisor Blerta Aliko.
Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

Every year on World Humanitarian Day my mind returns to memories of a dark day, 19 August 2003. I had just finished a three-month detail assignment in New York as part of the team working to close down the “Oil for Food Programme”. I was with my colleagues in the office when we received news of the bombing of the Canal Hotel in Baghdad and that one of our coworkers had been caught in the blast. It had only been a couple of days since I had last seen him and that happy event was to congratulate him on the birth of his son.

I ...

Cross-posted from UN Women

Gender and Humanitarian Advisor Blerta Aliko.
Photo: UN Women/Ryan Brown

Every year on World Humanitarian Day my mind returns to memories of a dark day, 19 August 2003. I had just ...

China’s ‘left-behind girls’ learn self-protection

Cross-posted from UN Women

Safe spaces for girls left by migrating parents have been set up and trainings are on-going for children, teachers, community leaders and public authorities to prevent sexual violence, supported by the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women.

A normally quiet second-grade girl, Yuan Yuan* suffers from a mild mental disorder which impacts her ability to learn and communicate. Her father, mentally disabled, left her several years ago to find work in the city and his family hasn’t heard from him since. Unable to support the family, her mother also left and never returned. Yuan Yuan’s paternal grandparents have been caring for her since. But they are not always there.

“I am scared of that man… he laughed at me ...

Cross-posted from UN Women

Safe spaces for girls left by migrating parents have been set up and trainings are on-going for children, teachers, community leaders and public authorities to prevent sexual violence, supported by the UN Trust ...

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