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Throughout the pandemic, youth have persisted in their activism, calling for sustainable change, equality, justice, and dignity for all. They have been invaluable support for their communities as health systems and social infrastructure are still overwhelmed in many parts of the world. From insisting on more inclusive societies to pushing for sexual and reproductive health, rights, and education, here are four stories of young people persisting in the pandemic.
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As 2021 comes to a close, we’re taking a look back at some of the major moments for gender equality and women’s rights from the past 12 months. From women at the forefront of the ongoing fight against COVID-19, to new laws to support survivors of gender-based violence, from women in the highest political offices to eliminating gender stereotypes in advertising, join us in celebrating some of the small and big strides for gender equality in 2021.
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A UN Women initiative, as part of a joint UN project funded by the Government of Sweden, is training teachers across the country in self-defense and communications skills to prevent and mitigate the risk of violence in schools.
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Hasina Safi served as Afghanistan's acting minister for women from May of 2020 until August 2021, and as Minister of Information and Culture before that. Ms. Safi has over 20 years’ experience in women development programs working with Afghan civil society organizations international organizations and UN agencies.
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Roa’a Al-Fased, 14, works to empower adolescent girls in her community in Jordan through promoting access to sexual and reproductive health services and raising awareness on gender-based violence.
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In the Republic of Moldova, few girls and women decide to study hard sciences or information technology (IT). The barriers they face at cultural, social or educational levels prevent them from advancing in their careers and becoming experts in fields where they are usually underrepresented.
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UN Women is launching a new flagship report, “Beyond COVID-19: A Feminist Plan for Sustainability and Social Justice”, which calls for governments to ensure the COVID-19 recovery shapes a more gender equal and sustainable world.
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Born and raised in Morocco, Yasmina Benslimane witnessed first-hand how oppressive laws affect women and force them to remain silent out of fear of breaking the status quo. She runs Politics4Her, a feminist blog and youth-led movement that advocates for the inclusion of girls and women in politics.
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Immaculate Akello, 25, is a climate change activist and lawyer whose work is transforming the lives of rural women in northern Uganda living along the shea belt community. Akello is the founder of Generation Engage Network, an organization that champions environmental rights and environmental democracy in Northern and Central Uganda.
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Along with 194 women from Ajdabiya, Hana* participated in Tamkeen, a two-month vocational training aimed at meeting the immediate food needs of vulnerable women, support their skills development and create job opportunities for them so they can become self-sufficient. The programme is jointly implemented by UN Women, the World Food Programme (WFP), and local partner Asarya, with generous support from the Government of Japan.
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Since February 1, women and girls have been at the frontlines as leaders of civil society organizations, civil servants, activists, journalists, artists and influencers exercising their fundamental rights to express their hopes for the future of their country. Even before the coup, women, who make up 75 per cent of Myanmar’s healthcare professionals, were at the forefront of the COVID-19 response. Now, during a tragic surge in COVID-19 cases, many women continue in their activism and serve their communities while also assuming significant responsibilities as caregivers for sick family members, and for their children’s home-based learning.
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UN Women will host the first all-Black, all-women global selling exhibition and auction titled “A Force for Change”, with proceeds benefiting Black women across the world and the participating artists. The exhibition will be open to the public in New York City from 27 to 31 July 2021, with an online auction hosted on Artsy from 16 to 30 July 2021, closing at 2pm EDT.
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Mete Belovacıklı, 59, is Editor in Chief of one of the oldest newspapers in Turkey, Milliyet. As a strong defender of gender equality, he has led Milliyet in becoming a partner of UN Women’s Global Media Compact. Milliyet is the only media organisation that became a commitment maker at the Generation Equality Forum with five-year commitments on economic justice and rights.
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UN Women kicks-off the call for applications for the second edition of the Princess Sabeeka Bint Ibrahim Al Khalifa Global Award for Women’s Empowerment in partnership with the Supreme Council for Women of the Kingdom of Bahrain, to recognize the work of governments, the private sector, civil society organizations and individual champions towards empowering women and girls worldwide.
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The Generation Equality Forum Paris concluded today with the announcement of bold gender equality commitments and launch of a global 5-year action journey to accelerate gender equality by 2026. The Forum’s bold, action-oriented agenda will be under-written by nearly USD 40 billion of confirmed investments as well as ambitious policy and programme commitments from governments, philanthropy, civil society, youth organizations and the private sector.
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Generation Equality Forum to drive major policy reforms and generate over USD 40 billion in new investments
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Discover the winners of the global comic and cartoon competition, organized by UN Women—together with the European Commission, Belgium, France, Mexico, as well as in partnership with Cartooning for Peace. Thirteen young artists between 18 and 28 years old were selected among 1200 submissions from more than 120 countries for their brilliant vision of Generation Equality.
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Karina Gould is Minister of International Development at the Government of Canada, Member of Parliament for Burlington city in Ontario, and Co-Chair of the COVAX Advance Market Commitment Engagement Group. She also represents the Generation Equality Forum Action Coalition on Feminist Movements and Leadership, working to develop catalytic actions and commitments to advance gender equality. Gould’s action priority is ensuring that feminist leaders, movements and organizations are supported to carry out their work without fear of reprisal.
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In the run up to the 2021 Generation Equality Forum — a landmark gathering for gender equality convened by UN Women and co-hosted by the governments of Mexico and France in partnership with civil society and youth — we asked artists globally to visualize what gender equality means to them. Get inspired by some of our top picks and learn why these artists joined us to #ActForEqual.
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Convened by UN Women, co-hosted by the governments of Mexico and France, together with civil society and youth, the Generation Equality Forum is taking place in Paris, from 30 June to 2 July. Here’s how it’s set to be catalytic and action-oriented, unveiling major investments, programmes, and policies that accelerate progress on women’s rights.