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Turning Up the Volume of Women's Voices at the UN

© François Bouchet

World Pulse is thrilled to welcome onto the scene a new UN agency—UN Women—which opened its doors last month. With more power and a bigger budget than women's advocates have ever commanded within the United Nations, UN Women will unite the efforts of existing agencies and take on the major challenges facing women around the world.

UN Women executive director and former Chilean president, Michelle Bachelet, will have a long to-do list to make the agency live up to its promise. What do you think should be on this list?

Our community has already taken up the call, shared touching stories, and generated some great recommendations in our UN Women letter-writing campaign.

We launched this campaign to send your voices to the highest levels at the UN and to guide this new agency as it sets its priorities. This is just one way that World Pulse is working to build the influence of grassroots women leaders within global decision-making bodies.

Backed by millions of dollars and an empowered role within the UN, UN Women has a chance to enact some major change. What changes are most needed in your community? What would you put at the top of the UN Women agenda?

Write your letter and join the campaign.

If you want to know just how hard-won and historic this new agency is—and if you are curious what women's rights activists are saying about it—read the new World Pulse article on UN Women.

UPDATE: The public launch event for UN Women will take place February 24, 2011 at 6:30 EST and will be broadcast via live webcast here.

Comments

TERESA's picture

WOMEN VOICES AT THE UN WOMEN

Hi Francois,

Thanks! keep it up! Am one of those Grassroots Women who have submitted letter writing Campaign. Though i have been overtaken by events. I have seen your email today. The Private Cybercafe i usually visit to do browsing had electricity Internet connection so for two weeks i haven't browsed.

See you online

TERESA KAGECHA i would like to use the new password and email to participate in the WORLDPULSE VIEWS - COMMUNITY PARTICIPATION MOBILISING

When a woman talks in Nigeria, she is often interrupted to keep quiet because her voice is not suppose to be heard. Keep quiet who is that talking? dont you know that you are a woman is often the response that greets the woman whenever she is to air her feelings about the issue that concerns her and her children.
I remember an incidence my female lecturer once recounted in class about how the family travelled home during the Christmas holiday and the entire male family member gathered in a meeting to dicuss how the family landed properties were to be shared among her children and their cousins.She insisted that she must attend the meeting because the issues to be discussed concerns her children and as such the decisions to be taken affects her as well. But the family declined despite her level of education.Being a professor in the university did not even gualify her to participate in the meeting.Butshe was bent on disrupting that meeting if not for the intervention of the other women who pleadwd with her to please allow peace to reign. Thus must African women have accepted the fate of not being heard and some have even given up hope of trying to convince the men to listen.
After an hour or so, her action led to the family calling on all the other women to attend the meeting.Women should continually stand up and resist the the oppression from the male counterparts.Let us stand up with one force and together say no to gender inequality. We have suffered for so long. Many parents still trade the girl child's education to pay for the boys. The girl child is given into early marriage just to raise fund to send the boys to schoolwho they say will bear their name forever. This is injustice done to the woman.If a woman who has attained the higest academic standard can be so treated, what happens to the naive, ignorant uneducated woman, who does not know her right from her left. All women must be given equal given equal opportunity to access education because this is the only way to enhance the voice of the woman. No wonder my professor was able to make that noise that led to the invitation of the other wives to attend the meeting that determines the future of their children.Woman, you need education for your voice to be heard.

Most parents give so much attention and preference to the male child that the boy begins to see the sister as inferior, while he is the superior and most cherished child.I went home to Benin some few years ago to collect my result in school.This time I was already marriad and expecting a baby. Some how I could not finish all that is required within one week and had to stay longer at home instead of travelling up and down. Since I was heavily Pregnant, I usually will sit outside to get enough fresh air. I got the shock of my life when one of my younger brothers walked dowm to me to say that since I came, I have been seating out to monitor his movement and that he wonders why iam around in the first place instead of being with my husband and that I should rememberthat I no longer belong to this family. This is a common picture in Nigeria and you see most girls grow up to believe that the only thing they are good for is marriage. Some of them do not even see any reason why they should take their studies seriously.
I have four children with one girl and I ensure that my boys partakes in all form of domenstic chores including washing of dishes and sweeping the floor. These they take turn to do with my daughter. No child is more special than the other.
Once the woman is educationally empowered, she has been given a voice, we will continue to sound it and blow our trumpet and the more educated we are in number, the more we will shout until we will make our impact felt.

Gerty Nnamso,
Manages Skildev Foundation, a non for profit making organisation for women & youths. Lagos, Nigeria.

efe's picture

way to go

i am glad that you are training up your boys to be as hardworking as the girl but i hope you also encourage the girl to take up so called 'manly tasks" that way she will be be an all rounder. I like to see women who can fix light bulbs, tinker with an electrical appliance etc

gertynnamso's picture

Thanks for your comment. The

Thanks for your comment. The accomplished woman is an all rounder, even in doing all the termed manly chores. I can do all that and will ensure that my daughter do same.Thank you very much.

We will plan a visit on our next trip to NY to this agency. In meantime, perhaps you'd review our "My Introduction to a New Feminism" EBooklet at our site. http://www.sophiasirius.net

Halima Mohamed Abdel rahman's picture

Educated women

Hey there!
This is the first time that I come across this thread. I agree with you that education is the first element in change, whether socially,economically and politically, etc.
Without education I wouldn't be here among you or bring the story of Lubna Hussein to the world's attention (http://www.worldpulse.com/node/8729)
An educated woman equals and educated nation.
Teach women how to read an write, and it will be so easy to educate them on their rights.

Thank You so much!

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