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From where I stand: “Peace is not the absence of armed conflict”

Monday, September 11, 2017

Cherisse Francis says she is a feminist because she believes in gender equality, and believes that to truly experience peace, women and girls must be on equal footing with men and boys. More

From where I stand: “I have seen the impact women’s voices can have”

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Syar S. Alia is a young woman advocate for gender equality from Malaysia. Her journey as an advocate began with the first Young Women Making Change workshop for cis and trans women in Malaysia, supported by UN Women Fund for Gender Equality. More

From where I stand: “I want the women in this country to be on equal footing with men”

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Massah Lewally was one of the first female drivers in the UN system in Sierra Leone. She took up driving so that she could visit the UN projects and learn more. As the crisis continues to unfold in Sierra Leone, with nearly 6,000 people impacted by the mudslides, Lewally is working round the clock and assisting women. More

From where I stand: “The violence that marked my childhood made me the activist I am today”

Monday, August 21, 2017

Adão Paía is a young man from Mozambique who dislikes all forms of violence. Living with abuse since he was five, he feels that he had no childhood. Today, he works to convince men and boys in his community to share domestic responsibility with women and reject gender-based violence. More

From where I stand: “We are not the ones to be shamed! Our attackers should be ashamed and prosecuted!”

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Dina Smailova, survivor of gang rape, decided to break her silence 25 years after the attack. Today, she leads the national movement against sexual violence in Kazakhstan. More

From where I stand: “They said that a woman couldn’t run for elections…I proved them wrong”

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Coumba Diaw is the only female Mayor in the Louga region of Senegal. She grew up listening to a rhetoric that restricted women from participating in politics and public life. But that didn’t stop her. Today she makes other elected officials aware of the importance of women’s leadership. More

From where I stand: “If I am on the receiving end of violence, should I not be included in the discussions to end it?”

Monday, August 14, 2017

Hajiya Amina Ahmed is a peacebuilder from Nigeria who works across religious and ethnic lines to empower women and build peaceful communities. During a recent visit to a rural community, she, along with other women peacebuilders, convinced the community leader to appoint women in the traditional councils. More

From where I stand: “Peace is not an overnight miracle. Everyone needs to contribute to build peace”

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Saba Ismail started working on peacebuilding in Pakistan when she was 15 years old. The perceptions about young people is a major barrier to their engagement in peacebuilding, she says, as their work is not taken seriously. The heightened insecurity makes it even harder for young women. Still, she hopes to see diversities celebrated and everyone contributing to peace. More

From where I stand: “It is time that the world hears our voice”

Friday, August 4, 2017

Rayanne Cristine Maximo Franca is an indigenous youth activist from Brazil. Since leaving her home at 17, she has embarked on a relentless pursuit of rights and recognition for young indigenous women. More

From where I stand: “A big part of being a feminist is to make sure that young women know that they have rights”

Friday, August 4, 2017

Sophia Pierre-Antoine lived through many coup d'état in Haiti and watched the rising violence against women and girls all around her. Her feminism led her on a path to work with young girls to break the cycle of violence. More

From where I stand: “Women have to be at the heart of the Africa of tomorrow”

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Mehrezia Maïza Labidi chaired many of the plenary sessions that led to the birth of Tunisia’s new constitution, which includes a clause guaranteeing women’s rights. A vocal advocate for young women's participation and leadership in politics, she took part in the High-Level Women Leaders’ Forum for Africa’s Transformation and the launch of the African Women Leaders’ Network. More

From where I stand: “We thought gender was only for educated people”

Monday, June 26, 2017

Modesta Mujawariya is a co-founder of a small farmer’s cooperative in Rwanda. Although she had twelve plots of land, she didn’t know the exact size of her land and how to estimate yields. The Buy from Women platform connected her to markets and information through mobile technology. One of her biggest surprises was learning about how gender equality matters in agriculture. More

From where I stand: “Being a person with disability is challenging. Being a woman with disability adds extra challenges”

Friday, June 9, 2017

Malvika Iyer, a Disability Rights Activist and motivational speaker, received a standing ovation for her speech at the CSW61 Youth Forum. After losing her hands from a bomb blast, she became a strong advocate for inclusion of disability rights and gender. More

From where I stand: “It was my dream to wear the uniform”

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Lieutenant Colonel Wafa Sharqawi was among the first women to join the Palestinian Civil Police in 1997, going against all norms. The only family member who supported her decision at the time was her brother, who followed in her footsteps and became a police officer later. Today, Colonel Sharqawi liaises with UN Women and other international agencies on security sector reform and gender-responsive police services. Gender equality is becoming a priority within the Palestinian police force, and public perceptions about women in police are shifting. More

From where I stand: “We must be at the table making decisions”

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

For Pratima Gurung from Nepal, empowering indigenous women with disabilities starts with making them count as active participants and decision-makers, not just observers of decisions. She points to the need to strengthen their voices in disability fora, as well as indigenous peoples’ fora. More

From where I stand: “Expanding indigenous women’s rights strengthens the collective rights”

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The concept of collective rights is central to indigenous cultures. But the status of indigenous women within and outside their communities remain precarious when they are unable to claim any rights of their own. Janneth Lozano Bustos works with indigenous communities in Colombia to economically empower women so that they can enjoy autonomy over their lives and resources. More

From where I stand: “I slept in the dog house because I wanted to go to school”

Monday, April 10, 2017

Shirley Pryce, formerly a domestic worker herself, advocates for domestic workers’ rights in Jamaica and across the Caribbean. Globally The memory of her employers locking her out at night because she wanted to go to evening classes stays haunts her to date. Following Jamaica’s ratification of the ILO Convention on Domestic Workers, Pryce is advocating for a national law to protect the rights of domestic workers. More

From where I stand: “Technology sees skills before gender and disability”

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Casar Jacobson, a disability rights activist and a UN Women Youth Champion, shares her personal story of living with hearing disability and persevering to carve out a place in the world of work. She stresses on the power of technology in ensuring that no one is left behind. More

From where I stand: “Bureaucracy and traditions are holding back youth”

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Waad Hayef Alhlaili wants to create the first women’s shelter in Kuwait so that she and others can be safe from violence More

From where I stand: “I started my business with 15 dollars”

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Sandra Letio started a soap-making business with only USD 15. Today, she is 29 and her business is valued at USD 700,000. With sheer determination, talent, supportive parents and a team of young staff who believed in her, Letio overcame the barriers she encountered. At the CSW 61 Youth Forum, she inspired young entrepreneurs, but also reminded decision-makers to give equal opportunities to youth. More

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