• Saturday, April 19, 2014
  • A program of IPS Inter Press Service supported by the Dutch MDG3 Fund


    Political and Economic Turmoil Threaten Women’s Progress

    03 Feb 2012

    Executive Director of UN Women Michelle Bachelet

    By Mathilde Bagneres

    UNITED NATIONS, Feb 2, 2012 (IPS) – As UN Women celebrated its first birthday, its executive director Michelle Bachelet stressed that political upheveal and shrinking budgets are no excuse to push back the hard-won gains made by the women’s movement globally.

    “My top priority for 2012 will be to make a renewed push for women’s economic empowerment and political participation,” Bachelet said at UN Women’s one-year anniversary press conference Thursday.

    Formally known as the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting women and girls’ needs worldwide. Created by the U.N. General Assembly in July 2010, it became operational on Jan. 1, 2011.

    Its six priorities are advancing women’s political participation and leadership; improving women’s economic empowerment; ending violence against women and girls; expanding the role of women in peace talks, peace building, and recovery; making budgets and plans benefit women and men equally; and increasing coordination and accountability across the U.N. system for gender equality. More »

    Enhancing Women’s Dignity, New Video by TrustAfrica

    12 Sep 2011

    IPS is happy to share with its readers a new, inspiring video recently released by TrustAfrica.

    The film features TrustAfrica project “Enhancing Women’s Dignity”, and gives insight on some of the work done to build capacity to curb violence against women and increase women’s political participation. The work is being realised with funds from the Dutch MDG3 Fund.

    The video can be accessed here

    To learn more about TrustAfrica MDG3 project, visit the webpage.

    Dispatch from Kibera, East Africa’s Largest Slum

    19 Aug 2011

    Photo Essay by Aline Cunico

    (IPS/Aline Cunico)(IPS/Aline Cunico)

    Considered one of the biggest slums in the world, Kibera is Nairobi’s–and East Africa’s–largest urban settlement. Over one million people struggle daily to meet basic needs such as access to water, nutrition and sanitation. In this community lacking education and opportunities, women and girls are most affected by poverty.

    More »

    Raising the Visibility of Women in Politics

    15 Dec 2010

    IPS Africa Director Paula Fray speaking on Women and Elections to Sudanese female politicians.

    IPS Africa Director Paula Fray speaking on Women and Elections to Sudanese female politicians.

    Inter Press Service (IPS) Africa hosted a delegation of members of the Sudanese Women Parliamentarians Caucus at the IPS headquarters in Johannesburg, South Africa.

    The women representatives were on a UNIFEM-supported capacity building tour. IPS regional director Paula Fray outlined the organisation’s Women in Politics programme which seeks to build the voice and visibility of women politicians on the continent.

    Apart from producing a range of training tools for women in politics, the UNIFEM-funded programme also trains gender trainers in the southern Africa region.

    The training tools are available in English, French and Portuguese with a Reporting Elections Checklist also available in Arabic. For more information, visit the Africa From Polls to Polls site.

    Celebrating Resolution 1325…now for implementation

    10 May 2010

    Kudzai Makombe

    With the 10th anniversary of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 coming up in October, the UN is under a lot of pressure to implement the resolution. More »

    Las terroristas suicidas

    13 Apr 2010

    black_widows2Diana Cariboni

    MONTEVIDEO.- Cada vez que aparecen noticias sobre mujeres que se inmolan en sangrientos ataques terroristas, se me despierta la misma mezcla de sorpresa y horror. More »

    Fifteen years after Beijing

    23 Feb 2010

    Kudzai Makombe

    Women live longer than men but these extra years are not always healthy, says WHO. Credit: WHO/UNAIDS/K.Hesse

    Women live longer than men but these extra years are not always healthy, says WHO. Credit: WHO/UNAIDS/K.Hesse

    With the Beijing +15 review coming up next week at the Commission on the Status of Women, it seems an appropriate time to have a look at where we are globally in terms of gender equality and women’s empowerment in line with the 12 Critical Areas under the Beijing Platform for Action.

    More »

    Is it ever okay for a woman to exercise her sexuality to gain political power?

    15 Feb 2010

    Kudzai Makombe

    Queen Elizabeth I kept a reign on power by becoming "The Virgin Queen"  Credit www.PDImages.com

    Queen Elizabeth I kept a reign on power by becoming "The Virgin Queen" Credit www.PDImages.com

    This question has been puzzling me since a late-night, noisy get together with friends where we got talking (some might say gossiping) about the alleged cross-party sexual politics taking place in our government. The men, it was said, were using sex as a strategy to silence the women from the opposite camps. The woman targeted  loses her standing once she’s been seduced as it quickly becomes general knowledge among other politicians.

    “Once you see that so and so who used to be so vocal has gone quite then you know they’ve been had,” said one friend. Much like the boarding school strategy employed by male students to remove the top performing girl student’s ranking as number one in class I’m told. But, never having been to boarding school, much less a co-educational school, I am not aware.

    As much as this dirty trick is an age-old male strategy to silence female opponents, women throughout history have used their sexuality, that is — whom one has sex with (or not), in what ways, why, under what circumstances, and with what outcomes — as a strategy to gain power. More »

    Creating Momentum for Women’s Participation

    10 Feb 2010

    Paula Fray interviews ANNE-MARIE GOETZ, UNIFEM chief advisor for Governance, Peace and Security

    Anne-Marie Goetz: 'The structural exclusion of women is striking, and does tell us that there are serious double standards.' Credit: Paula Fray/IPS

    Anne-Marie Goetz: 'The structural exclusion of women is striking, and does tell us that there are serious double standards.' Credit: Paula Fray/IPS

    NEW DELHI, Feb 9, 2010 (IPS) – Women’s movements have played a critical role in creating political space for female participation in politics around the world. In fact, there are more women in government today than ever before.

    According to UNIFEM’s Progress of the World’s Women 2008/2009 report “Who Answers to Women? Gender & Accountability”, women now hold an average of 18.4 percent of seats in national assemblies, though the rate of increase is still very slow.

    Around the world, a number of countries are undergoing an extended process of democratic consolidation, in which legal systems are being amended to incorporate new constitutional rights and political systems are being tested for their capacity to tolerate opposition, says UNIFEM‘s chief advisor for Governance, Peace and Security, Dr Anne-Marie Goetz.

    But more needs to be done as women’s effectiveness in translaitng policies into action depends upon gender-responsive governance reforms. And the women’s movement can play a critical role in supporting such social change. More »