• Thursday, October 23, 2014
  • A program of IPS Inter Press Service supported by the Dutch MDG3 Fund

    International Women’s Media Foundation Honoring Four Brave Women Journalists Who Confronted Danger to Cover World News

    18 Oct 2011

    Mali’s Dieneba Deme interviews an agriculture expert. Credit IWMF

    Four brave women journalists who have risked their lives covering the news will be honored by the International Women’s Media Foundation with Courage in Journalism Awards and a Lifetime Achievement Award in Los Angeles on Oct. 24 and New York on Oct. 27.

    IWMF’S Courage in Journalism Award winners face daunting challenges reporting the news in their countries.  Mexican drug cartels have threatened to kill Zeta editor Adela Navarro Bello and have already murdered two Zeta editors, Iranian officials have targeted and harassed Reuters bureau chief Parisa Hafezi and Thai authorities have charged Prachatai editor Chiranuch Premchaiporn with breaking the law for allowing 10 strangers to post anti-royal comments on her website. Premchaiporn is standing trial now, facing up to 20 years in prison in a test of Internet freedom. More »

    Women Nobel Peace Laureates Congratulate Three New Women Laureates

    08 Oct 2011

    Nobel Peace Prize Laureates, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberian activist Leymah Gbowee and Yemini opposition leader Tawakkul Karman.

    Ottawa — The women Peace Laureates of the Nobel Women’s Initiative—Jody Williams (USA), Shirin Ebadi (Iran), Mairead Maguire (Ireland) and Rigoberta Menchu Tum (Guatemala)—sent letters of congratulations to the three women who today were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize:  Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Liberian activist Leymah Gbowee and Yemini opposition leader Tawakkul Karman.

    “Your victory today is a victory for all women around the world struggling for peace, justice and equality,” said Jody Williams, who won the Nobel Peace prize in 1997 for her work to ban landmines.  “We are inspired by your example of nonviolent action in the face of brutal violence, discrimination and injustice.  You remind us that with women’s bold action, there is hope for a better world.” More »

    It’s Still a Man’s World, Especially at the Top

    24 Mar 2011

    IPS covers the International Women’s Media Foundation report 2011.

    By Andrea Lunt

    NEW YORK, Mar 23, 2011 (IPS) – Long known as a “boy’s club”, the worldwide media industry continues to struggle with gender equality, with new research showing women are still underrepresented in the majority of newsrooms across the globe.

    The study, conducted over a two-year period for the International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF), covered 170,000 people in the news media and involved interviews with 500 companies in 59 countries.

    On average women are underrepresented in all media positions, in sectors ranging from news media ownership, publishing, governance, reporting, editing, photojournalism, and broadcast production. More »

    Global Fund for Women Releases “Top 10 Wins for Women’s Movements”

    08 Mar 2011

    San Francisco, CA -  On the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day, the Global Fund for Women (GFW) looks back over the past year and celebrates extraordinary victories won by its grantee partners in “Top 10 Wins for Women’s Movements.”

    From progressive new national and international legislation to mass mobilizations for peace, the “Top 10” stories showcase the creative and bold approaches women’s groups have used and also reflects the growing power and sophistication of the global women’s movements. “In spite of the backlash and resistance that such movements often face,” says Charlotte Bunch, Global Fund Board Member and Professor at Rutgers, “These victories are a valuable reminder that women are still an important force in the world making advances for social change and human rights.

    Topping the list is the forthcoming International Labor Organization (ILO) standards that will protect tens of millions of domestic workers, most of whom are women and migrants. The ILO process was initiated after countless hours of organizing by domestic workers across the globe under highly restrictive working conditions and with limited infrastructure.

    Women’s movements are also celebrating the first successful use of CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women) by women in the Philippines who used the UN convention to appeal a domestic rape case. Women’s groups also used the European Human Rights Court to overturn Ireland’s abortion ban. Also making the list is Nigerian women’s success in defeating the regressive “Nudity Bill”. In each of these victories, Global Fund grantees were at the forefront of the fight for women’s right, justice and equality.  Last but not least, the revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt made the list because of their promising impact on the lives of women and people of the region, and for inspiring social justice movements worldwide.

    For more information about the Top Ten Wins or to schedule interviews, please contact Deborah Holmes, dholmes@globalfundforwomen.org or 415.248.4849.

    About the Global Fund for Women

    The Global Fund for Women is the largest publicly supported grantmaking foundation that advances human rights by investing in women-led organizations worldwide. Our international network of supporters mobilizes financial resources to support women’s contributions to social justice, equality and peace. Since 1987, the Global Fund has awarded over $82 in grants to more than 4,000 groups in 170 countries.

    Huairou Commission to hold first Global Summit on Grassroots Women’s Leadership and Governance. NY, March 3-8, 2011

    02 Mar 2011

    The Huairou Commission, a global network of women’s organizations operating in 54 countries, is hosting the first Global Summit on Grassroots Women`s Leadership and Governance from March 3 – 8, 2011, in New York City.  The Global Summit, which directly follows the 55th session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), will be an opportunity for grassroots women working to increase their leadership and participation in national and international decision-making processes to join with other women leaders to share strategies, debate challenges and create platforms for collective action. Grassroots women leaders from Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe will further meet with partners and stakeholders from academia, government, NGOs and the private sector to establish partnerships to advance women’s global leadership.

    “Women from urban and rural poor communities across the world are too often seen as passive recipient of aid and services, instead of practitioners and innovators in development,” says Sarah Silliman, Director of Programs at the Huairou Commission. “This global summit provides a unique and necessary exchange space for women activists who are experts in the development needs of their communities to showcase and build on each other’s work.”

    March 7 – 8 marks the main Partnership Summit at which grassroots leaders will share initiatives that reduce local poverty and advance gender equality with policy makers, development workers, researchers and other activists working to empower women as political leaders and decision makers.  The Partnership Summit will identify areas of collaboration between grassroots organizations, professional partners and institutions, and develop a collaborative statement which will outline common objectives and future commitments to empowering grassroots women to represent their priorities and take formal leadership in decision-making processes on local, national and global levels.  This event will be held at The Church Center for the United Nations, 777 First Avenue at 44th Street in Manhattan, New York City.

    At the Grassroots Summit from March 3 – 5, women from low-income communities in 26 countries who have shown exceptional leadership in Huairou’s Governance Campaign and MDG 3 Initiative will exchange successful strategies for community development, and influencing policy and decision-making processes in local and national governments. During three days of workshops, the Grassroots Summit aims to promote cross-regional peer learning, and encourages participants to identify the effects of international geopolitical and institutional arrangements they face locally. As experts on the needs of their communities, local women leaders will establish key organizing benchmarks that promote democratic, gender-equitable development. They will then share their action plans at the Partnership Summit from March 7-8. The Grassroots Summit will be held at Jennings Hall, 260 Powers Street in Brooklyn, New York City.

    About the Huairou Commission Governance Campaign

    Over the past three years, the Huairou Commission Governance Campaign leveraged and invested over $1.5 million from the Dutch government, UN-Habitat and UNDP to initiate and scale up grassroots women’s leadership in local development practices, understanding and engagement in decision-making processes, and partnerships with local authorities and stakeholders. Over 50 grassroots women’s organizations and networks have taken the lead in the Huairou Commission’s Millennium Development Goal 3 and Local to Local Dialogue initiatives, with impressive results they will share at the Summit.

    The Dutch government’s decision to invest directly in grassroots women’s organizations upon realizing that Millennium Goal 3 was lagging behind marks a shift in the attitude of donors toward recognizing the importance of empowering the recipients of aid to take ownership over development processes in their communities. These investments in capacity building and knowledge exchange on the ground have to be maintained in years to come both financially through private and state donors, and institutionally through entities like the new U.N Women. It is only by recognizing and investing in women as key element in global sustainable development that the challenges facing communities the world over will be adequately addressed and overcome.

    For more information on the summit and how to participate, please visit our website www.huairou.org or contact Sarah Silliman at Sarah.Silliman@huairou.org. Phone: 718.388.8915.

    UNiTY Rises Against Violence

    20 Sep 2010

    Chris Stein

    Johannesburg: The Unifem campaign ‘Say No – UNiTE to End Violence Against Women’ has set off campaigns right across Africa.

    In Sudan, a growing number of reported cases of child rape have prompted public support for changes to the country’s laws on sexual assault.

    “Society will take a step towards social change and justice,” says Fatima Hashim, director of the Salmmah Women’s Resource Centre in Khartoum, and leader of the 149 Alliance, a coalition of civil society groups named after the article of Sudan’s penal code they are working to change. “It will enable women to take the cases to court and punish the criminals.” More »

    CSW 54, According to MDG3 Networks

    17 Mar 2010

    csw_opening2-300x198

    Opening of the 54th Commission on the Status of Women. Credit: Bomoon Lee/TerraViva

    Beyond the endless queues to get registered at CSW, the exceptional networking opportunities (to which the queues also contributed), and the general feeling that after 15 years Beijing promises are far from being a reality, the 54th U.N. Commission on the Status of Women the first two weeks in March in New York was a rich and inspiring opportunity for the global women’s movement.

    Here’s some lessons we learnt from the family of MDG3 networks and organisations in New York. More »

    U.S. Should Invest in New U.N. Women’s Agency

    26 Jan 2010

    Charlotte Bunch  Credit:Nick Romanenko

    Charlotte Bunch Credit:Nick Romanenko

    One year after U.S. President Barack Obama’s inauguration, and looking at his first State of the Union address on Wednesday, January 27, women’s rights groups recognise some progress has been made in terms of advancing an agenda for women’s rights around the world. But many challenges remain, starting from the ratification of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) — though the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to recommend formal endorsement of CEDAW in 2002, the United States remain the only country in the Western hemisphere that has not ratified the treaty.

    In this interview published by IPS, Charlotte Bunch, founding director of the Center for Global Women’s Leadership at Rutgers University, spoke about her assessment of the U.S. president’s achievements, and what remains to be done. More »

    Women’s Reproductive Freedom Ensures Our Survival, Kavita Ramdas Explains Why

    12 Jan 2010

    Kavita N. Ramdas  Credit:Global Fund for Women

    Kavita N. Ramdas Credit: Global Fund for Women

    On the occasion of the speech on women’s reproductive rights given on 8 January by Secretary of State Hilary Clinton at the State Department, IPS published an op-ed by Kavita Ramdas, President and CEO of the Global Fund for Women.

    The Global Fund for Women (GFW) is the world’s largest women’s foundation dedicated to advancing the rights of women, working with women’s groups in 161 countries.

    Supported by the Dutch MDG3 Fund, GFW is helping the work of grass roots women-led civil society organisations in Asia. Within its MDG3 programme of work, IPS is partnering with GFW and other MDG3 Fund co-grantees organisations committed to women’s empowerment to strengthen the visibility of their own work.
    More »