FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Virginia Gildersleeve International Fund’s President Eileen Menton presented a statement at the thematic debate on theme 3 ”Global partnership for development in the context of the post-2015 development agenda”
VGIF was honored to be asked to speak at the UN on Monday during the special high-level meeting of ECOSOC with the Bretton Woods institutions, the World Trade Organization and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development concerning “Global partnership for development in the context of the post-2015 development agenda.”
New York, April 24, 2013 – The Virginia Gildersleeve International Fund (VGIF) delivered a statement to the United Nations thematic debate on theme 3 “Global partnership for development in the context of the post-2015 development agenda.” Among the participants were high level experts, dignitaries, and representatives from civil society. The other non-government speakers were Ms. Bhumika Muchala a Senior Researcher at the Third World Network and Ms. Mahinour Al-Badawi, a Senior Researcher at the Egyptian Center for Economic and Social Rights. VGIF urged that the UN and the development community bring small NGOs and Women’s organizations into the process and that greater emphasis be placed on meeting MDG3 (Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women), in addition to MDG8 (Global Partnership for Development).
“We recognize the strides made in the MDGs and that three important targets on poverty, slums and water have been met. Nevertheless, considering that over three billion people still live on less than $2.50 a day, that 22,000 children die due to poverty every day, that more than 100 million children of primary school age are out of school, and that women continue to be underrepresented in the formal economy and in national parliaments, we are still far from achieving most of the MDGs by the 2015 deadline. The 2012 Global Food Policy Report of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) reveals that almost 55 percent of the reduction in hunger from 1970 to 1995 can be attributed to improvements in women’s status in society. Given the demonstrated effectiveness of the advancement of women and girls on achieving such development outcomes, we must redouble our commitment to support them to achieve their full potential. This involves prioritizing MDG 3 alongside the other seven goals. MDG 8, though one of the most crucial levers affecting the success of all the other MDGs, is one of the least developed. The post-2015 development framework should give utmost importance to identifying, developing and implementing strategies to promote global partnerships for development in the context of the post-2015 development agenda,” stated Eileen Menton, VGIF President.
Other VGIF recommendations included: implementing an all-inclusive multi-stakeholder approach at every stage, hearing the voices of smaller NGOs, promoting opportunities that build capacity of grassroots NGOs, developing and fostering partnerships in education and technology, leadership opportunities, local food production, and women’s economic empowerment. Partnerships in and between governments, the private sector and civil society will uplift the most vulnerable and reach those needing the most help.
For more than 40 years, VGIF has partnered with grassroots organizations to empower women. This year, VGIF funds will build a much needed Physics and Biology laboratory at a girls’ school in a remote part of India and provide high quality science education materials developed by the North Carolina School of Science to girls and teachers in Zanzibar. VGIF is identifying opportunities this year in Ghana, India, Kenya, and Zimbabwe to promote sustainable community development through nutritional gardens. Other VGIF funding will promote women’s empowerment through the political and legal frameworks within a particular country. VGIF is funding training for 40 widowed women in farming technology and women’s legal right to property ownership, as recognized in Kenya’s new constitution. VGIF also is funding enhancements in the informal economy, through a variety of projects such as Tilapia farming in Ghana and quilting skills in Mongolia. Partnerships like these will ensure that MDGs 3 and 8 are closer to reality and the new Post-2015 goals bring equality and empowerment to women worldwide.
The statement can be found here
Contact VGIF: Staci Alziebler-Perkins 212-213-0622
The Virginia Gildersleeve International Fund (VGIF) provides small grants for grassroots projects that empower women and girls in developing countries. VGIF has supported women in developing countries through economic empowerment, community development, health and nutritional support, literacy and leadership training, educational seminars and workshops, and science and human rights education through over 400 successful projects in over 70 countries.