Feb 23, 2024
“Meeting after meeting, resolution after resolution, this body has failed to effectively address this conflict. We have watched members of this Council deliberate and delay while civilians die. This... Read more
World TB Day is observed annually on March 24 to raise awareness about TB and efforts to end the global epidemic, marking the day in 1882 when the bacterium causing TB was discovered.
TB is an ancient disease that is still with us. It is preventable and curable, and yet, worldwide, TB remains one of the world’s deadliest infectious killers. Ending the TB epidemic in all countries by 2030 is one of the targets of UN Sustainable Development Goal #3: Good Health and Well-Being.
While TB is rare in most of Canada, that is not true in Canada’s north, where in recent years TB rates in Inuit communities have been as much as 300 times higher than those of non-Indigenous people born in Canada.
International Women's Day -- March 8 -- is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women's equality.
This International Women’s Day, GRAN celebrates women who are changing the future of farming in Africa.
Click here to meet seven young women who are strengthening food security in their communities through sustainable agriculture initiatives.
In a groundbreaking declaration made on February 6, 2023, International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation, Chief Zanzan Karwor, Chairperson of the National Council of Chiefs and Elders in Liberia, declared, “By the power vested in me by all the Paramount Chiefs of the 15 political divisions in Liberia and signed by myself… FGM is banned in Liberia.” Read more here.
Canada is investing in immediate and sustainable programs to ensure access to quality education for children and youth in emergency and crisis situations so that no child is left behind. Canada has announced a pledge of $87.5 million over 4 years (2023 to 2026) to Education Cannot Wait (ECW), the United Nations global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises. Click here to read more.
Good news! In a unanimous declaration, African leaders pledge to end AIDS in children by 2030. Ministers and representatives from twelve African countries have committed themselves and laid out plans to end AIDS in children by 2030. International partners have set out how they will support countries in delivering on those plans, which were issued at the first ministerial meeting of the Global Alliance to end AIDS in children. For more on this announcement, click here.
The New Humanitarian has just released its report on the humanitarian crises needing urgent attention in 2023. Most of them are driven by conflict and climate shocks, compounded by pre-existing vulnerabilities and inadequate access to services. Five of the identified crises are on the continent of Africa, with hunger and food insecurity a major element of all eleven ongoing crises in the Global South.
The report is sobering, but an important read. Click here to access it.
"The United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights... states that the right to food is indispensable for the fulfillment of other human rights. ...Since human rights are indivisible and interdependent, a human right cannot be enjoyed fully unless other human rights are also fulfilled. Advocating policies that promote other human rights — like health, education, water and sanitation, work and social protection — can positively impact the right to food as well." -- Maximo Torero, Chief Economist of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)
Click here to read Maximo Torero's Human Rights Day article on the right to food.
"The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women is about remembering those who have experienced gender-based violence and those who we have lost to it. It is also a time to take action. Achieving a Canada free from gender-based violence requires everyone living in this country to educate themselves and their families and communities on gender-based violence, centre the voices of survivors in our actions, and speak up against harmful behaviours." -- Government of Canada
November 25 is International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and marks the beginning of the UNiTE campaign’s annual 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence. This year the UN mark’s the 16 Days under the theme “UNiTE! Activism to end violence against women and girls", urging all of us to play a role in ending violence against women and girls, to show support and solidarity to women’s rights activists, and to resist the rollback on women’s rights. Click here to read UN Under-Secretary-General Sima Bahous’s “Push Forward” statement in which she outlines three important calls to action. And watch this inspiring 2-minute video from UN Women: Against the Pushback, We Push Forward.
The international climate change conference, COP27, ended in the early dawn hours of Sunday morning with celebration on creation of the Loss and Damage Fund, the result of 30 years of advocacy by developing countries and civil society. The details of the fund will be developed over the next year or two.
"This decision, taken on African soil, brings hope for vulnerable impacted peoples and communities not just in the continent, but for the entire Global South”, stated Tasneem Essop, Executive Director, Climate Action Network International. However, “(w)hile COP27 begins to address the consequences of the climate crisis, it failed to commit to phasing out fossil fuels, which are at the root of the climate crisis. More fossil fuel extraction means more losses and damages and more devastation. We need a rapid yet equitable transition away from the fossil era to renewables."
Canada played a constructive role at COP27, voicing support for loss and damage and language related to a phase-out of “unabated” fossil fuels. Click here to listen to Canada’s Catherine Abreu, founder and Executive Director of Destination Zero, reflect on the outcomes of the event and her optimism for the future going forward (23:18 min).
The intense negotiations over the past two weeks took place with the backdrop of the prolonged drought and imminent famine affecting millions of people in the Horn of Africa. Click here for the CBC interview with Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Lynsey Addario who recently visited Somalia on assignment for National Geographic.
The focus now shifts to each country and the actions needed to avert climate collapse. Civil society continues with a critical role to play.