UN Women Nepal
Nepal has set itself the goal to graduate from least developed country status by 2022. Cited as one of the ‘fastest movers’ by the Human Development Report, the country has made significant progress towards achieving its development goals. The focus on broad-based economic growth and poverty alleviation has produced encouraging results, with the percentage of the population living below the poverty line falling from 42 in 1996 to 25.4 in 2011. Despite the difficult post-conflict transitional context, the country is expected to achieve six out of its eight Millennium Development Goals by 2015, and is likely to achieve targets for poverty and hunger, universal primary education, child mortality, maternal health and gender equality and women’s empowerment.
Women’s representation in the Constituent Assembly dramatically increased to 29 per cent in the November 2013 elections from 2.9 per cent in 1991 (in the then parliament). Additionally, Nepal has demonstrated active leadership in development issues globally, playing a formative role in the development and adoption of the Istanbul Programme of Action in 2011... Read more
News and Updates
Nearly 25 years have passed since the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (BPfA), a lot of progress has been made for Nepali women but there is still a lot to be done. This was the key message during the Beijing+25 review national consultation held in Kathmandu on 18 and 22 October 2019. BPfA was adopted during the 4th World Conference on Women in 1995 to develop global policy actions for achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment.
[Remarks] As highlighted by Shanthaji, the Beijing +25 commemoration, and the Generation Equality Forum to be organised by UN Women in 2020, will be a diverse and intergenerational convening. To build for the future, we must bring together the young generations of women’s rights and gender equality activists with the visionaries who crafted the Beijing Platform for Action. It is only if we bring women of all ages and from different social, economic and geographic backgrounds, with their different experiences and skills, together that we can reach our goals.
Kali Gurung’s husband was killed in crossfire between the rebels and government forces decades ago. But her struggles did not end with the conflict, and she explained how conflict-affected women like her had difficulty moving on even after the peace was restored in the country following the 1996-2006 conflict with the Maoist rebels. “Women of my generation have suffered violence not just during the armed conflict. I hope by sharing my experiences today can provide lessons to the new generation of women so that they will not have to suffer like us.”
UN Women is supporting dialogue between the Government and LGBTIQ groups to ensure that Nepal’s LGBTIQ people are properly counted in the 2021 population census. The last census, in 2011, tallied only 1,500 people identifying as LGBTIQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, intersex and queer/questioning). That was because the census lacked specific questions or a method to collect this data, and the nature of the census made many people afraid to come out.
Two UN agencies have deepened their cooperation to boost gender equality and women’s empowerment in Nepal. The inter-agency collaboration will see UN Women and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) work together to promote reform and fight discrimination against women at all levels.
Shanta Lakshmi Shrestha chairs the Beyond Beijing Committee (BBC), a coalition of women's rights and gender-justice organizations working to advance the status of women in Nepal. It was created after the Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing in 1995. The Committee advocates and monitors the Beijing Platform for Action (BPFA) from the grassroots to the global level.
Women’s equal access to E-commerce is not only a door of opportunity for women’s economic empowerment, but also research has shown that money in the hands of women is spent on health, education—the family—benefiting the community and economy. It gives women flexibility and enhances their decision-making power in homes. Digital financial solutions also have dramatic impacts on women’s economic and social well-being, especially when women are subject to various mobility restrictions due to gender discriminatory social norms. E-commerce is an accelerator for the achievement of the SDGs as highlighted by previous speakers.
A cross-agency training on gender in communications brought together UN staff from 13 agencies in Nepal last month. The two-day session provided the 25 participants with a range of tools and skills to develop gender-responsive communication materials in their respective lines of work. “There is a need for devising coherent communications plans and strategies that position the United Nations as the torchbearer of incorporating gender in communications,” said Valerie Julliand, UN Resident Coordinator.
Pertti Anttinen is the ambassador of Finland to Nepal, and from July to December 2019 is the designated EU Gender Champion. In December the Government of Finland agreed to continue supporting the implementation of UN Women Nepal’s Country Strategic Note (CSN) for 2018-2022.
Ishani Shrestha, 28, is a social activist and entrepreneur in Nepal. After she was crowned Miss World-Nepal 2013, she founded Project Smile to improve women’s health and children’s education and to end gender discrimination. As a feminist and a Nepali woman, I see the uncountable challenges girls and women face in our country. Some of the major challenges that I want to help ease are the lack of awareness of human rights, the lack of education and access to health care, and the social stereotypes that restrict women from becoming who they want to be.