Denmark highlights commitment to girls and women with conference announcement and launch of a new gender framework
COPENHAGEN, Denmark, 18 August 2014 – Today, with 500 days left until the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) deadline, advocacy organization Women Deliver and the Danish Minister for Trade and Development Corporation, Mogens Jensen, announced that the next Women Deliver global conference will be held in Copenhagen, Denmark, in May 2016. The announcement was made at the Invest in Girls and Women – Everybody Wins event held at the Danish Parliament, where Denmark’s new Strategic Framework for Gender Equality, Rights and Diversity was also launched.
“We are beyond thrilled that the Women Deliver 2016 Conference will be in Copenhagen,” said Women Deliver President Jill Sheffield. “The Danish government has played a key role in advancing girls’ and women’s health and rights and, with its support, this conference could catapult these issues to the forefront of the global development agenda and unify advocates from all around the world around one simple ask: Invest in girls and women – it pays.”
The Women Deliver 2016 Conference – the fourth triennial global meeting – will be the largest gathering on girls’ and women’s health and rights in the last decade and the first large global conference on these issues following the launch of the post-2015 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The meeting will offer advocates, activists, researchers, policymakers, young people, journalists, private sector leaders and members of civil society an unprecedented opportunity to strategize on how to operationalize these new goals and make sure that investments in girls and women become a priority at the national and global levels. This is of key importance given that the MDG target of reducing maternal mortality and achieving universal access to reproductive health is likely to be met last, with some 800 women worldwide still dying from pregnancy- and childbirth-related complications every day.
The Women Deliver 2016 Conference will build on momentum generated around the previous landmark conferences held in 2013 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which was attended by 4,500 participants from 149 countries; in 2010 in Washington, D.C.; and in 2007 in London. The conferences have in the past drawn high-level attendance – including by the UN Secretary-General – and have generated action, spurred new ideas, and shared solutions that continue to make a difference for girls and women around the world.
Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary of Denmark is active in working to create awareness on girls’ and women’s sexual and reproductive health and rights, global maternal health and child mortality issues, and acts as patron of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Maternity Foundation.
“I am proud that Denmark will be hosting the Women Deliver 2016 Conference, and look very much forward to not only welcoming the world’s leading girls’ and women’s health and rights advocates to Copenhagen for this historic event, but also to be participating once again in what is an inspirational, powerful and potentially game-changing forum,” said Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Mary of Denmark, who has also been a committed member of the High-Level Task Force for the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) since its establishment in 2012. “Together, we need to increase investments in women and girls. If we can close the gender gap, it will be a win for the individual, for global development, and for economic growth – everybody wins.”
The Danish Ministry also launched a new Strategic Framework for Gender Equality, Rights and Diversity to guide its efforts to improve the lives of girls and women around the world. The new framework focuses on the potential of gender equality to transform societies, and highlights how Denmark will help girls and women access resources and seize opportunities that will enable them to take control over their own lives.
“Women Deliver and Denmark are united in our dedication to improving the lives of girls and women everywhere,” said Danish Minister for Trade and Development Cooperation Mogens Jensen. “We look forward to collaborating with Women Deliver and others – in line with our new Strategic Framework – to accelerate progress in the final 500 days of the MDGs and to make sure that girls and women remain front and center in the post-2015 world.”
The Invest in Girls and Women – Everybody Wins event featured remarks from Danish Family Planning Association International Director Tania Dethlefsen and Novo Nordisk Corporate Vice-president Charlotte Ersbøll. All of the panelists called on fellow advocates and partners to work together – across all sectors – to push for progress now, through the MDG deadline in 2015 and beyond the Women Deliver 2016 Conference.
“There has never been a better time to raise our voices in support of the health and rights of girls and women,” said Women Deliver CEO Katja Iversen. “Together, we can – and we must – create a future where all girls and women, no matter where they are born, can lead healthy, productive and happy lives.”
Please visit Women Deliver’s website to learn more about the Women Deliver 2016 Conference and the global effort to improve the lives of girls and women. The Danish Ministry’s new Strategic Framework for Gender Equality, Rights and Diversity can be accessed online here. Check out our Storify page and tweet us using #WD2016.
ABOUT WOMEN DELIVER: Women Deliver believes that when the world invests in girls and women, everybody wins. We connect diverse voices and interests, and drive political commitment and progress to improve maternal, sexual and reproductive health and rights. As a leading global advocate, we build capacity and forge partnerships, together creating networks and messages that spark political will for investment in the health, rights and well-being of girls and women.