Every year, representatives of Member States join at the United Nations in New York for the Commission on the Status of Women. The goals of this gathering are to assess gender equality and to pinpoint challenges in the progress towards equality. Today is the final day of this gathering. Member States, UN entities and organizations including World Vision have been meeting this past week, discussing the remaining challenges towards meeting the eight Millennium Development Goals. With these goals set to expire in a year, the discussion around these issues is vital as the need for progress continues. There are high expectations that the commission will guide a forward-looking development blueprint that stresses the importance of ensuring women’s rights, empowerment and gender equality.
I have been reflecting on the encouraging improvements I have seen this past year for women and girls. It is reassuring that the passion for gender equality has evolved and many are now committed and moved by the cause. The amount of media attention that has developed over this past year has only furthered the momentum and discourse around these issues. This past year, the powerful documentary, Girl Rising, spread its message to thousands and highlighted the difficulties facing girls globally. Malala Yousafzai also inspired many through her strength and global voice. Just months ago, Malala was recovering after being shot in the head by the Taliban and now she is using that story to raise global awareness for girl’s education. Her voice and the media attention have captivated people to learn about these critical issues. As the movement progresses and the UN and organizations work towards justice for women and girls remember to spread messages of tolerance. Continue to help Strong Women, Strong World and use your voice to inspire others on gender equality.