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[Press release] New data from seven countries in the Asia-Pacific region shows that, since the onset of the COVID-19 crisis, more women than men have left their paid jobs to provide essential services to their families, such as cleaning, caring for the sick and home-schooling children. Tighter household budgets also mean that many are experiencing food hardship, while water and fuel are becoming increasingly unaffordable. Furthermore, medical and hygiene products remain unavailable to many, while supply-chain issues and misinformation about vaccines have left more women than men unvaccinated.
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Bangladesh has already demonstrated great success in disaster risk reduction. We have the National Development Framework that has powerful instructions for climate change and disaster risk reduction. We have our own local adaptation and mitigation strategy. But there is gap in translating those plans into concrete actions. So in order to advance toward the objectives of the 66th CSW, we need to be more action-oriented.
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Farah Kabir is the Country Director of ActionAid Bangladesh. Over close to three decades of vast experience in the field of development and research has made her renowned human rights figure and a CSO leader at home and abroad with an uncompromising voice against human-rights violation. She is a member of Advisory committee of Bangladesh’s NDA to the Green Climate Fund (GCF), a member of such Child Rights Committee National Human Rights Commission, Board member of UCEP. She is a member of the Global Board of the Global Network of Disaster Risk Reduction (GNDR), Board Member of Climate Action Network South Asia (CANSA) since 2019. steering committee member of ACIAR-Rupantar program of Australian Government, advisory committee member of Women’s Economic Empowerment (WEE).
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This year, in honour of and the 66th session of the Commission on the Status of Women and International Women’s Day theme, UN Women put a spotlight on the intersectionality of gender inequality and climate change with an event on the theme: “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow,” underscoring how women and girls continue to bear the burden of climate change while leading empowerment and sustainability efforts across the globe.
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Kert Tandog has been working for two years with the Liyang Network, which raises awareness of front-line environmental activists in Mindanao. One focus is training Indigenous communities on legal literacy and land property laws.
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Madam Maa Zenai stands proudly at the entrance to her brand-new shed. Inside is the small herd of cattle that has changed her life, thanks to a project that employed a ground-breaking partnership between IFAD and UN Women to empower rural women in China.
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Women and girls need to be better represented in all aspects of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction (DRR) policy and programme processes, from the leadership and decision-making spaces, data collection and analysis, to policy formulation, programme design, and all the way through to implementation on the ground, as well as the monitoring and evaluating of these efforts.
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Keya Khan is Additional Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change of the Government of Bangladesh. She was interviewed in her office in Dhaka by Shararat Islam of UN Women. This year’s International Women’s Day theme is, “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow”. How can we ensure gender equality and empowerment of women in the context of climate change, environmental and disaster risk reduction policies, and programmes?
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[Joint Press Release ] The countries and territories of the Pacific share some common energy challenges, but their success in meeting them has been uneven, particularly in rural areas. Addressing the shortfalls will require a renewed focus on women at every stage, as key and informed users, decision-makers, and also engineers of the region’s sustainable energy solutions.
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[Press Release] UN Women and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed an agreement today to continue working together to promote women’s equality and empowerment in Asia and the Pacific. The memorandum of understanding formally extending the partnership to March 2027 was signed in an online ceremony by the bank’s president, Masatsugu Asakawa, and the executive director of UN Women, Dr. Sima Bahous. The two sides had been cooperating since 2016 under an earlier 5-year agreement.
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The climate and resource crises, as well as global inequality, have not disappeared during COVID-19. If anything, the pandemic has underscored the critical need to address gender inequality if we want to successfully combat the global pandemic and the climate crisis. It has also demonstrated the leadership roles that women and girls are playing in health and disaster response, especially at the local level.
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Devishi Jha, is an 18-year-old climate activist who was born in India and now lives in the United States. She is the Director of Partnerships at Zero Hour, an international youth-led climate justice organization, and serves on the National Council at UNICEF USA.
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[Press release] UN Women China and its partners today launched a five-year project to boost agricultural productivity in China’s Hunan Province while protecting livelihoods against the risks of climate change. The project, focused on women farmers, is expected to benefit about 328,000 people.
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Statement by Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka for World Environment Day, 5 June 2021
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The villagers of the Giay ethnic minority are often at the mercy of the weather, so UN Women is helping them avert losses in their main livelihoods of farming and raising chickens and fish. Quang Kim, a commune in Ta Trang village near the capital of Lao Cai province in northern Viet Nam, is often hit by flash floods and landslides during the storm season. “The income of my family depends much on planting rice and selling chicken and fish, but all were buried by the flood in October last year,” said Ho Thi Nhung, 38, who lives here with her husband and two sons.
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Women who are “most disadvantaged” need “equal participation in all relevant planning and decision-making processes,” with regards to multi-stakeholder engagement for climate action, said Saad Alfarargi, the UN Special Rapporteur on the right to development. This includes in particular “women with disabilities, girls and young women, minority women, indigenous women, and members of other disempowered and marginalized groups,” he said.
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Despite increases in the number of women at the highest levels of political power, widespread gender inequalities persist, according to the 2021 edition of the IPU–UN Women “Map of women in politics”. The data shows all-time highs for the number of countries with women Heads of State and/or Heads of Government, as well as for the global share of women ministers.
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[Prress release] Netflix and UN Women today launched “Because She Watched”, a special Netflix collection of series, documentaries, and films to celebrate International Women’s Day. “This collaboration is about taking on the challenge of telling women’s stories and showing women in all their diversity. It's about making visible the invisible, and proving that only by fully representing and including women on screen, behind-the-camera and in our narratives overall, society will truly flourish,” said Anita Bhatia, UN Women Deputy Executive Director. Created for International Women’s Day.
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Two dozen Vietnamese journalists are now able to better report on how women can help prepare for and mitigate the effects of natural disasters, thanks to a training co-organized by UN Women.Empower Women for Climate-Resilient Societies, a joint project UN Women and United Nations Environment Programme, collaborated with the Viet Nam Disaster Management Authority in organizing the training last November 21-22 in this city in central Viet Nam. A total of 26 print, broadcast, digital and photo journalists from 17 media outlets attended.
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Three women led the making of the film in 2018 when they were students at Massey University/The University of New Zealand: Wiktoria Ojrzyńska as director, co-producer and editor, Amiria Ranfurly as co-producer, and Alexandra Brock as cinematographer and editor. Subject to Change shows scenes of near-apocalyptic destruction wreaked by cyclones and climate-induced disasters.Through the voices of women like Ravaga, the film offers moments of reflection on how much there is to lose — land, culture, languages, life.