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Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step it up for Gender Equality!

08 March 2016

The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme is proud to celebrate 2016 International Women's Day in this first, crucial year since the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In line with Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) number 5, "Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls", we fully support the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and the theme this organization has chosen for 2016: "Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step it up for Gender Equality", with the aim at closing the world gender gap by ensuring equal opportunities and rights for women and girls by 2030.

SDG number 5 is a stand-alone gender goal underlining the necessity for structural and attitude changes, and it has been demonstrated that volunteers facilitate changes in mindsets at grass-roots level by raising awareness and championing those changes and inspiring others. As UNV Executive Coordinator Richard Dictus put it, "a significant catalyst for change, volunteerism makes a real difference in women's lives and provides a pathway to advance sustainable development for all."

UN Volunteers all over the world focus on ending violence against women, expanding women's choices and capabilities, and giving women a voice within households and in public and private decision-making spheres. Both women and men are volunteering to improve women's status in society through actively participating in their communities and taking on leadership roles. Below we share some of their stories.

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UNV is administered by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)