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Be seen! Be heard! Youth at the 3rd PMNCH Partners’ Forum

By: Yemurai Nyoni and Lindsay Menard-Freeman, Women Deliver

This 3rd PMNCH Partners’ Forum is the first large-scale involvement of young people to date. Out of the approximately 1000 participants here in Johannesburg, nearly 10% are youth representatives under 30. This is a great start, and a clear opportunity to increase meaningful youth engagement in the forum and others like it. Will PMNCH consider including a youth constituency to its other seven constituencies while mainstreaming youth within and throughout? We really hope so.

Partners’ Forum representatives come together from governments, civil society, development agencies, private sector, and the media to deliberate on how best to accelerate progress for women, children and adolescents in the context of RMNCH. Youth representatives are uniquely positioned to put our issues front and center, and to magnify our contributions to advancing maternal and newborn health. Read more...

Join Us in Celebrating a Lifelong Advocate for Girls and Women

Dr. Fred Sai, Ghanian Physician and Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Advocate, Celebrates His 90th Birthday

Join us in wishing a very happy birthday to Dr. Fred Sai, Board Member Emeritus and long-time friend of Women Deliver. Dr. Sai has been a champion for maternal and reproductive health for his entire lifetime, and next week will celebrate his 90th birthday. We will be compiling birthday messages for Dr. Sai and would love your input! Read more...

 

Q&A with Katja Iversen About Her Vision for the Future

In this Q&A, Women Deliver’s new CEO Katja Iversen shares her motivations for becoming an advocate for girls’ and women’s health and rights; discusses lessons she has learned in her career; offers advice for emerging advocates; and describes her vision for the future for girls and women around the world.

Q: What first inspired you to become a maternal and reproductive health advocate?

I’m proud to say it was my grandmother. Back in the 1930s she – in her own quiet and behind-the-scenes way – fought fiercely for girls’ and women’s reproductive rights in Denmark, where I am from. At the time, only married women could get access to modern contraceptives.  She and my granddad lived together without being married, and she worked seven days a week to get him through college, so getting pregnant just wasn’t an option. Even when she got married and had kids, she kept up the fight for all women’s reproductive rights – because it was just the right thing to do. Read more...

Denise Dunning Unlocks Girl Power Through Let Girls Lead

By: Stacy Teicher Khadaroo; Originally posted by The Christian Science Monitor

To help girls stay in school, women and girls in Malawi are taking a stand against child marriages. So far they have persuaded leaders in 22 villages to penalize men who try to marry a woman under age 21. One possible penalty? Taking away some of the man's goats or chickens.

It's the kind of strategy that probably wouldn't have occurred to a US-based nonprofit. But in countries where girls and women bear the brunt of poverty, Let Girls Lead, an Oakland, Calif.-based initiative founded by Denise Dunning, helps them amplify their voices and broaden their hopes, turning small victories into large-scale changes. Read more...

World Economic Forum Event on Investing in Girls

This week, approximately 2,500 global leaders, key decision-makers, entrepreneurs, corporate executives and youth from around the globe have gathered in Davos, Switzerland for the World Economic Forum. Over the next few days, participants will discuss this year’s theme, The Reshaping of the World: Consequences for Society, Politics and Business. The meeting presents a tremendous opportunity to shape global policy through advocacy events, such as the United Nations Secretary-General's MDG Advocacy Group event Scaling Up Success: Investing in Girls’ Empowerment for MDG Acceleration. Read more...

Keeping Complexity in a Human Rights–Based Approach to Family Planning: Is It Worth It?

Submitted by Shannon Harris, on behalf of the team led by Futures Group and EngenderHealth that developed the Voluntary, Rights-Based Family Planning Framework, Originally posted on Champions4Choice

Human rights–based family planning (FP) programming—what does it mean? Where do you start to translate it into practice? How comprehensive do you need to be? It is easy to become daunted by a long list of inputs and activities, such as those listed in the voluntary, rights-based family planning framework developed by a team led by Futures Group and EngenderHealth. The recent Vision 2020 newsletter refers to the overwhelming nature of existing guidance documents for ensuring that FP programs are rights-based and offers a simplified starting point. But will simplification of a complex set of challenges lead to the transformation in FP programming that our field needs? Read more...

Celebrate Solutions: Domestic Violence Survivors Learn Legal Rights

By: Rati Bishnoi, Program Manager, Catapult

The following is a 90-day progress report on Jenesse Center’s “Legal self-defense for domestic violence survivors" project, which fully funded on Catapult earlier this year. Jenesse Center, Inc.—the oldest domestic violence intervention program in South Los Angeles—is more than just a shelter for survivors of domestic violence. Jenesse is a family institute with training and educational programs, services and outreach efforts that offer hope by rebuilding lives, reuniting families and enriching our community. This summer—through a fundraising campaign on Catapult — Jenesse was able to raise fund $25,000 to help domestic violence survivors effectively represent themselves and advocate for their legal rights in court. Read more...

Katja Iversen to Join Women Deliver as Chief Executive Officer

New York City -- Women Deliver, a global advocacy organization dedicated to improving the health and wellbeing of girls and women, is pleased to announce that Katja Iversen, Chief of Strategic Communication and Public Advocacy with UNICEF, will be joining Women Deliver as Chief Executive Officer starting in March 2014.

“We are thrilled and honored to have Katja Iversen join Women Deliver,” said Jill Sheffield, Founder and President of Women Deliver. “Katja has a heart that beats for sexual and reproductive health and women’s rights, and we are honored to have her support and expertise moving forward.” Read more...

16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence 2013

Today marks the beginning of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender Violence Campaign. The 16 Days Campaign originated from the first Women's Global Leadership Institute coordinated by the Center for Women's Global Leadership in 1991.  Read more...

The Countdown to Trust Women 2013 Has Begun!

By: The Trust Women Team

Trust Women is more than just a conference. It is an influential international gathering with one goal: action. Women’s rights campaigners and leaders in the fields of law, finance, business, technology and government will come together in London on 3-4 December to forge strategic commitments to advance women’s rights. On the agenda: Fighting human trafficking; tackling slavery in the supply chain; prosecuting violence against women;  access to healthcare; the Arab Spring’s impact on women. Read more...

Press Release: Imagining a better future for all

EuroNGOs Conference sets the focus for SRHR in the Post-2015 Agenda

October 25th 2013, Berlin: Yesterday, representatives from 75 of the world’s leading sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) organisations convened with UN agencies and international decision-makers at the DSW hosted EuroNGOs conference in Berlin with their gaze firmly fixed on advancing SRHR in the post-2015 development agenda. Almost a month after the 68th UN General Assembly’ MDG Special Event, where member states came together to agree on a roadmap for a post-2015 agenda, the conference titled, “Next Steps: Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights on the Post-2015 Agenda”, called for a forward-looking development framework that promotes SRHR, gender equality, and the empowerment of women, adolescents, and youth. Read more...

World Bank: Poverty is the Defining Moral Issue of our Time

World Bank President Jim Young Kim spoke at George Washington University last week on the eve of the World Bank Group/International Monetary Fund Annual Meetings. He discussed the World Bank’s recently released strategy on ending global poverty. Kim particularly noted the importance of working with countries emerging from conflict, affected by conflict, or in a persistent state of fragility as pivotal steps towards developing peace and security worldwide, and highlighted the need for continued investments in girls and women. Read more...

Celebrate Solutions: Decline in Intimate Partner Violence in Bangladesh

By: Sara Pellegrom, Women Deliver

Bangladesh is witness to some of the highest rates of intimate partner violence (IPV) against women in the world. In the past several years, the Bangladeshi government, donors, non-governmental organizations, and community advocates have introduced a variety of interventions to promote gender equality, increase women’s empowerment, and reduce violence against women. These efforts have led to an expansion in girls’ access to primary and secondary education, an increase in Bangladeshi wives’ contributions to their family’s income, and reduced gender disparities. Now, research is also showing that these changes have had an impact on the incidence of IPV. Read more...

Five Global Health Events on the Same Day? How to Stay Connected at the UN General Assembly

By: Nicole Schiegg, Former USAID Senior Advisor; Strategic Comms Consultant; Originally posted on Huffington Post

Next week is the annual gathering of a "who's who" of political, private sector and civil society leaders at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York City. It is the culmination of several months of careful planning, especially for global health advocates who pack the week with side events that feature progress and hold the world accountable to do more for the world's most vulnerable. Read more...

RH Journal Article on Youth at Women Deliver 2013

The latest issue of Reproductive Health Journal includes an article on the health and development needs of young people as highlighted at the Women Deliver 2013 conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The sixteen co-authors put together key themes which emerged at the conference and developed solutions to improving the health and well-being of youth worldwide. Read more...

Press Release: Some 35 Million More Children Under Five at Risk if Child Mortality Goal Not Met

Originally posted at UNICEF

A new UNICEF report shows that if current trends continue, the world will not meet Millennium Development Goal 4 – to cut the rate of under-five mortality by two-thirds by 2015. Worse, if current trends continue, the goal will not be reached until 2028. The cost of inaction is alarmingly high: as many as 35 million more children could die mostly from preventable causes between 2015 and 2028, if the global community does not take immediate action to accelerate progress. Read more...

Help Malala’s Birthday Wish Come True: Support Her Fight for Education

By: Joanna Hoffman, Women Deliver

On their 16th birthday, many girls around the world hope for new clothes or a cell phone. Tomorrow, when Malala Yousafzai celebrates her 16th birthday, her wish will not be small or simple, but it will have the potential to change the world. She will speak at the United Nations in support of the 57 million boys and girls who do not yet have access to education, asking that the global Education Emergency be put to an end. Read more...

Global Leaders Call for Accelerated Progress on Family Planning at Women Deliver 2013

Melinda Gates, Babatunde Osotimehin and others highlight progress in expanding contraceptive access

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 29 May 2013 – On the second day of Women Deliver 2013, the largest conference on girls and women of the decade, global leaders announced progress and new commitments toward expanding contraceptive access for women in developing countries. They also outlined plans for sustaining this momentum in the years to come. Read more...

Youth Leaders Discuss Sexual and Reproductive Health and HIV Services at Women Deliver 2013

By: James Kityo, The Key Correspondents Programme

The Key Correspondents Programme is covering the Women Deliver 2013 global conference live from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia May 28 – 30.

At Women Deliver 2013 this week, two key partners for the Link Up project, the ATHENA Network and the Global Youth Coalition on HIV/AIDS (GYCA), met with youth leaders from around the world on a range of issues that affect them when it comes to services for sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and HIV. Read more...

Contraception and Gamified Advocacy

By: Jill Sheffield, Women Deliver and Matti Navellou, Global Poverty Project; Originally posted on Huffington Post

It's time to modernize advocacy efforts to empower girls and women.

222 million women currently lack access to modern contraception. That's 222 million women who can't plan their fertility, and 222 million women who can't plan their lives.

As notable policymakers, government leaders, civil society representatives and corporate leaders come together this week to discuss the global health and empowerment of girls and women at the 3rd Women Deliver Global Conference in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - now is the time to rethink effective advocacy in this area. Read more...

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