This year to mark December 1, World AIDS Day, the World Health Organization is highlighting the difference communities are making to end the HIV epidemic. Among their key messages, they stress the importance of community and civil society engagement, acknowledging that activism and civil society action have been key resources in the HIV response from the early days, inspiring the global health community to galvanize efforts for increased equity, respect for health and human rights, and scientific innovation.
To raise public awareness on World AIDS Day, the World Health Organization has prepared a wealth of clear and informative HIV/AIDS facts and figures, as well as specific policy recommendations. There is plenty to learn about the current successes and ongoing challenges in the global response to HIV/AIDS. Take some time on this World AIDS Day to learn more by clicking here.
Education Cannot Wait (ECW) and United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) recently announced they are teaming up to reach vulnerable children and youth caught in crisis-affected countries. Together, the two programs are stronger and more able to meet the needs of the most vulnerable. For some children, the only food they eat all day will be a meal at school.
Read more here.
Under the umbrella of UN Women’s Generation Equality Campaign that marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, for the next two years the focus of the UN Secretary-General’s UNiTE to End Violence against Women Campaign will be on rape as a specific form of harm.
The campaign will mark the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence from 25 November to 10 December under the theme: Orange the World: Generation Equality Stands against Rape! UN Women are inviting civil society to join them in galvanizing actions around the world to take a stand against sexual violence in all contexts and to spark a global conversation about what it will take to prevent and end rape. Read more here.
If you are planning Orange Campaign activities in your community, UN Women advise that their advocacy tool kit for 2019 will only be available one week before November 25. While we realize that this is too late for most, we hope you will be able to adapt the current resources on the GRAN website to this year’s theme.
Please send your photos, posters and events to Janet Siddall at email@example.com so we can amplify your message on our Facebook page and website.
Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer announced on October 1st that, if elected, he would cut Canada's International Assistance spending by 25%, a move that is unprecedented and would have serious consequences for those living in poverty around the world. GRAN has been advocating for increases to international assistance during this election, not cuts. Right now, we are close to the lowest level of funding for international assistance in our country’s history (0.28% of our Gross National Income). Civil society groups were taken by surprise by this announcement and are working together to respond. Read more here about the Conservative leader's announcement.
The UN has designated October 1st as the International Day of Older Persons. This year’s theme is “The Journey to Age Equality” with a focus on ways to cope with existing inequalities and to prevent future old age inequality. Around the world, events are being planned to draw attention to the rights of older persons. To find out more please click here.
Regarding an international convention on the Rights of Older Persons
GRAN has recently convened a Watch Group for the purpose of keeping track of developments at the United Nations and around the world on the issue of a Convention on the Rights of Older Persons and keeping GRAN informed when there are opportunities for advocacy action.
The Convention’s purpose would be to provide an instrument to protect the rights of people in their old age. To learn more about this and to find out 10 reasons why we need this Convention, click here.
Advocacy GRAN Style: The Grandmothers Advocacy Network
We are proud and excited to introduce you to a wonderful new video that showcases the amazing women and the meaningful work of GRAN. We hope you will find inspiration in our shared stories as we continue to advocate for the rights of grandmothers, children and youth of sub- Saharan Africa.
They say that a picture is worth a thousand words - so please click here to watch and share - this is who we are!
Janet and Jenny
Co Chairs GRAN
On Thursday, August 22, 2019 GRAN was proud to be represented by Irene Clarke when Minister Monsef announced that Canada will be increasing its investment in the Global Fund by 15.7% to a total of CAD $930.4 million over three years (2020-2022).
A huge shout out to all those GRAN members who sent postcards, letters and tweets, and met with the Parliamentary Secretary and MPs to press Canada and the international community to make this investment that will save millions of lives. Once again we have demonstrated that by working in partnership and by speaking out, our advocacy can help change the lives of African grandmothers.
For more on the funding announcement click here.
On July 11, 2019, all fourteen civil society and labour union representatives of the government’s Multi-Stakeholder Advisory Body on Responsible Business Conduct Abroad (Advisory Body) tendered their resignations. The unanimous decision to resign is due the erosion of civil society and labour unions’ trust and confidence in the government’s commitment to international corporate accountability.
This comes as a result of the government’s decision to backtrack on its promise to create a Canadian Ombudsperson for Responsible Enterprise (CORE).
Read the English article here.
Lisez la version française ici.
Good News! At last year’s G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Québec, Canada committed $400 million to support education for girls and women, especially in crisis situations. Just last week, at G7 development ministerial meetings in Paris, France, Canada’s Minister of International Development and Minister for Women and Gender Equality, Maryam Monsef, concluded the meetings with an announcement to support 25 new projects, predominately in sub-Saharan Africa, to improve access to education for women and girls. GRAN is pleased to hear that Minister Monsef promises to continue to work together with partners to ensure that women and girls around the world are given equal access to quality education, thus supporting their empowerment, learning, and protection. Read the full Global Affairs Canada news release by clicking here.
This week Canada announced its first education project to be funded from the $400 million G7 Charlevoix Declaration on Quality Education made in June 2018. The Honourable Maryam Monsef announced $5-million to support the Canadian Organization for Development through Education (CODE) project in Sierra Leone, “Transforming Girls’ Education.” This project will train more than 200 teachers in gender-responsive pedagogy. Over 160,000 students will benefit from this initiative. Congratulations to CODE for their successful proposal.
Read more at