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Current World YWCA News

YWCAs and Discrimination and Persecution Based on Faith

Rev. Pirjo-Liisa Penttinen, General Secretary of the YWCA of Finland shares her views and experiences concerning discrimination and persecution. 

How do we better listen to, learn from, and accompany women and girls suffering because of their faith? Do we just read and hear news of painful events, including killings and just turn the page or channel to next heading or advertisement? Women manage daily life including daycare and educational challenges . They also interpret and transfer the religious practices and traditions within families more often than their partners. Why cherish harmful practices?

Common Concern - December 2014

Envisioning 2035 - Mapping a path towards sustainability

December 2014: Envisioning 2035 - Mapping a path towards sustainability

As a movement the work that we do is tremendously important for millions of women and girls, and their communities, across the world. However, in order to be effective today, we have to examine at what drives our work and what will keep us relevant in the future. In this edition of Common Concern you will find different articles relating to our common future and how to sustain it.

Change is coming. Change has to come!

The 59th annual session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW59) concluded on Friday 20, March, 2015 with an agreement by UN Member States on steps to boost its efforts to advance gender equality and women’s empowerment. 

Advocating for the Rights of Children

The World YWCA took part in the proceedings of the 28th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC28), held from March 2-27 2015, in Geneva. The World YWCA followed the annual full-day meeting on the rights of the child: “Towards Better Investment in the Rights of the Child” and more recently hosted a side event titled “Child, Early and Forced Marriage – Turning Recommendations into Actions”.

CSW59: Did you fight a good fight today?

As week one of UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW59) draws to a close, the World YWCA has been engaged with a delegation of some 100 participants from 28 different countries. Through the collective efforts of the delegation the YWCA movement is advocating diligently to demand, claim and ensure that the review of Beijing Platform for Action (BPfA) is inclusive of the voices of the world’s young women and girls and that the future Working Methods of CSW recognise the immense importance and significant contributions of civil society.

YWCA of Lebanon Shapes Young Leaders

The National YWCA of Lebanon dedicated 2014 to rolling out a number of projects that seek to improve the well-being of young women, by providing them with skills to advance and enhance their participation in all areas of social and economic life. The projects focused on vocational and leadership training programmes. It enabled young women to improve their personal financial security and contribute to their participation at both local, national, private and public levels. The wider aim of the project is to offer leadership training programmes for young women to prepare them for decision-making roles both in the YWCA and in the wider community, as well as to prepare them for well-paid jobs to support themselves and their families who were impoverished due to displacement, higher living costs or death of a family member.

CSW59 Kicking off with a bang

On 8 March, 2015 thousands, including 100 YWCA delegates, took to the streets of New York City on International Women’s Day, for a march led by UN Women, NGO CSW New York and special guests including the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, the First Lady of the City of New York, Chirlane McCray, Nobel laureate Leymah Roberta Gbowee, actors Paul Bettany and AnnaLynne McCord, and dozens of other women’s rights leaders and activists. The theme - “Planet 50-50 by 2030: Step It Up for Gender Equality and Women’s Rights” – was the main chant of the march, with marchers bearing slogans demanding gender equality. 

Business As Usual Is Not An Option

“Young women and girls must claim your space, do not wait for others to ‘allow’ you in. Demand to be heard, you have a right to be at the decision making table. Am I right, or I am right?” - Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, UN Women Executive Director.

International Women’s Day 2015 – Let’s celebrate and push forward!

Annually, on March 8 people from across the globe gather to celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD). It is a day when all extraordinary women, young women and girls are honoured. The focus of IWD ranges from celebrations of respect, love, and gratefulness to women’s unique contribution to our communities and the world. It is also a day of commemorating women’s courageous economic, political, and social achievements. During this day of celebrating the many milestones achieved by the women’s movement, it is important to fire up actions addressing existing gender inequalities in order to make gender equality a lived reality for all.