UN Women announces Beijing+25 Youth Task Force
Date: Tuesday, September 3, 2019
The year 2020 will mark several important milestones for gender equality and sustainable development, including the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, one of the most comprehensive blueprints for women’s rights worldwide.
UN Women is determined to make sure that young people are in the driving seat of these galvanizing moments and contribute to all stages of the global review process and the generation equality campaign.
Following call for applications in June, UN Women is pleased to announce the “Beijing+25 Youth Task Force”, comprising of 30 young leaders from different youth-led and youth-serving organizations, with diverse areas of expertise and from all regions of the world. They represent young people in all their diversity and across intersectional complexities including marital status, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, indigenous and ethnic identities, and refugee or migrant status. The selected youth leaders have also a track record of driving change in their communities and mobilizing young people for the empowerment young women and girls all over the world.
The youth leaders will support and guide UN Women’s efforts to place young people at the centre of the Beijing+25 process; be part of a network of young supporters that will foster momentum on youth engagement for gender equality on a global level; and exchange expertise and knowledge with other young people that are working towards the same goals.
UN Women has launched a global campaign, Generation Equality, to mark the 25th anniversary of Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, to tackle the unfinished business of achieving gender equality and women’s empowerment everywhere.
Stay tuned to know more about the work of the Beijing+25 Youth Task Force and click here to see who they are!
Members from Asia and the Pacific
ZAHRA AL HILALY
As a first generation Australian to migrant and refugee parents, Zahra is an advocate for change. With parents from Palestine and Iraq, she has vowed to help others not have to go through the struggles her parents had to face. She works with the Youth Affairs Council as a cultural trainer, helping refugee and migrant young people to be leaders; as a ShoutOut Speaker, using slam poetry to engage young people in stigmatized topics; and as a youth consultant, facilitating the National Youth Settlement Forum which helped organizations such hospitals to gain new skills to engage young migrants and refugees. She is also a part of the National Youth Advisory Committee for White Ribbon Australia, which aims to engage young people across Australia to speak about domestic violence against women.
As a migrant to Beijing from a provincial town in China, Ruiying founded Qisi Program, a non-profit program dedicated to supporting and empowering underserved rural-urban migrant girls in metropolitan China. The program’s module has been recreated in other parts of the country, impacting over seventeen thousand youth. To advocate for quality caring and education for rural and urban migrant girls, she designed and operated the educational Qisi Summer Camp, which engages migrant girls and local youth in feminist-based courses. She is currently pursuing a dual Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Economics at Columbia University and Sciences Po.
RAFIUL ALOM RAHMAN
Rafiul is the founder of The Queer Muslim Project, India’s first and only organization working on the intersectional issues affecting LGBTQ Muslims. Rafiul has been involved in grassroots LGBTQ mobilizing and youth advocacy, and has facilitated communications, advocacy and training on gender, sexuality and human rights for several organizations. Through digital advocacy and a series of focused offline workshops, trainings and retreats, he has worked to create safe and enabling spaces for self- introspection, confidence-building, community support and emotional healing for LGBTQ Muslim individuals. In 2018, Rafiul was nominated as a ‘Young Changemaker’ by The Hindu Business Line.
Satoko Yamaguchi is a young women’s program coordinator at YWCA of Japan, where she organizes various programs and campaigns to empower young women and girls (from 12 to 30 years old). She coordinates a program called “Japan-Korea Youth Conference” that raises awareness of youth from both countries on commonly shared issues, driving them to commit to the causes She is also committed to advocacy work, particularly through lecturing on social issues at junior and senior high schools and universities and delivering opinions at Beijing+25 review meetings hosted by the Gender Equality Bureau Cabinet Office, Government of Japan.
Shawana is a Pakistani activist focused on the rights of women, young girls, and the transgender community. She co-founded Da Hawwa Lur, a political, social and economic development platform for girls that provides a space for capacity building and connecting members to key stakeholders and policy makers to present their demands for pro-women legislations. Through community mobilization and organization, she fostered a women’s movement that developed the first women manifesto in Pakistan, enlisting demands by women and for women. In 2016, she received the International Humanitarian Award, and she was selected as Gulmakai Network Champion.
DAREN PAUL KATIGBAK
Daren Paul is a registered Nurse, Midwife and a Public Health professional residing in the Philippines. He finished his Master of Science in Public Health (MScPH), major in Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights at Royal Tropical Institute (KIT) in Amsterdam, Netherlands. He used to work with the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines – Episcopal Commission on Health Care (CBCP-ECHC), a faith-based organization that mainstream gender equality and women’s health and rights among different Catholic schools, universities, colleges and different dioceses and parishes all over the Philippines.
- SRI LANKA
Chamathya is a youth activist who represents the World Association of Girl Guide and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS), the largest voluntary organization for girls and young women, with a membership of 10 million girls in 150-member countries. She has delivered projects of the Stop The Violence Campaign of Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association, leading a team of girls and boys to take action against gender based violence. She was a member of the Global Young Influencers Group who codeveloped “Girls Get Equal” Global Campaign with Plan International. She was recognized by the US State Department as one of the 10 Emerging Young Leaders in 2017 for her work on empowering girls and young women against gender-based violence.