In 2014, national authorities in CAR decided to establish a Special Criminal Court (SCC) to investigate and prosecute serious human rights violations, including crimes against humanity and war crimes. The law on the creation of the Court was promulgated on the 3 June 2015. It demonstrated strong political willingness to end impunity and the importance of equality, justice and freedom in achieving sustainable peace.
Living in Pakistan since September 2015 has truly been an eye-opener. In a developing country where most of the population are youth, I have seen first-hand how we in the UN can actively influence young people to realize the benefits of women’s empowerment and give equal opportunities to women and girls. As a UN Volunteer, I encourage people to take action.
"Voices Against Violence" in Togo is an $85,000 USD project that was funded and implemented by the United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme between October 2016 and April 2017. The project is based on an informal education program developed by the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts and UN Women. It aims to fight against gender-based violence by raising the awareness of young secondary students about the root causes of violence, ways to prevent it, and finding solutions.
The Gender Based Violence Sub Cluster Report from West and Central African countries facing armed conflict revealed that the prevalence of sexual and gender-based violence has drastically increased since the last report in 2016. It is in this line that we jointly organized, in 2017, a regional capacity building workshop on gender mainstreaming, prevention and response to Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in emergency and humanitarian settings in Dakar, Senegal.
During a field monitoring mission as a UN Volunteer Associate Project Officer with UN Women in Tajikistan, I got to know the female leaders of two dairies which, independently from each other, approached me with their idea to produce a hard cheese as a more durable dairy product.
Three national UN Volunteers are working to empower adolescent girls by raising awareness amongst adolescents, their families and local authorities on women’s rights, and addressing issues such as early marriage, sexuality and violence against women. Their work contributes to the Saqilaj B’e Joint Programme (JP) implemented by UN Women, PAHO/WHO, UNESCO, UNFPA and UNICEF, together with the Government of Guatemala.
As many as 68 per cent of women and girls aged 15-49 in Asia and the Pacific face some form of violence in their lifetime. This is one of the highest levels reported in the world.
Rapid mobilization of UN Volunteers
In her position, she finds herself working across different projects focused on empowering women in every aspect. One week she may be in the field monitoring business and entrepreneurship trainings for producer group members, and the next she may be representing her programmatic team at a Gender and Climate Change training for Members of Parliament. One thing is for sure, there is always something to be done.
UNV works to ensure gender equality and the empowerment of women from both an institutional and a programmatic perspective. We wish to use this occasion to feature the rich variety of ways UN Volunteers around the world contribute to SDG 5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.