This month we focus on women’s contributions to the economy, and challenges which remain in women gaining equal rights, access and resources to enjoy full and equal economic participation.
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Infographic: Women and the Economy
Our Champions are women and men who have made gender equality and women’s empowerment their cause and mission. Hear from them about why and what you can do to join them!
India's Rafiq Pathan stands at the forefront of efforts to end discrimination towards girls, and symbolically plants a fruit tree every time a girl is born. He marries activism for gender equality with environmental protection, and uses his influence as the village council leader to support girl children. Read more »
She is as passionate about gender equality as she is about her music. Mexican-born jazz singer, Magos Herrera, has taken the Latin American jazz scene by storm and was in 2009 nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Jazz Vocal Album. A powerful advocate for women's rights, she is a spokesperson for the United Nations Secretary-General's UNiTE campaign to end violence against women. Watch her video »
A digital expert and a gender activist, Dhruv Arora, 25, is passionate about both these dimensions of his work and is widely known in New Delhi, India, as the man galvanizing action through an online movement on gender issues. He is one of the creators behind GotStared.At and #itsnotyourfault, an online movement that he built with his friend Kuber. The platforms provide an outlet for people experiencing street harassment, and advances debate on the multiple issues involved. Dhruv Arora is a #HeForShe advocate. Read more »
A former French minister for various economic portfolios – including finance and employment, agriculture and fisheries, and trade – Christine Lagarde was the first woman to become finance minister of a G8 economy and is the first woman to head the International Monetary Fund (IMF). She calls for opening the door to women’s learning, labour and leadership in the economy.
Read her column »
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Delphine Nana Mekounte, 60, was Cameroon’s National Coordinator for NGOs at the time of the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing in 1995. She is now the Director General of CEFEPROD (Women’s Centre for Promoting Development), a nongovernmental organization that promotes the economic, social and cultural development of women and youth.
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Gulzhan Kokbayeva, age 27, is the only female engineer for the first subway system in Kazakhstan, a country known for housing the first space launch complex in the world, the Baikonur Cosmodrome. Becoming a female engineer in a male-dominated profession where very few women have ventured before, a profession that is also considered dangerous to one’s health, was no easy feat.
Almost 20 years ago, 189 countries adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, a visionary roadmap for women's rights and empowerment. Much has been achieved since, but much more needs to be done and can be done. A world in which gender equality is a reality: Picture it!