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Showing posts from May, 2016

The Guardian: Can India’s military veterans join the fight for women’s rights?

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According to the National Crime Records Bureau, an average of 92 women are raped in India every day. A survey compiled by the Thomson Reuters Foundation lists the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Somalia as the five worst states for women’s rights in descending order.

The Indian armed forces instil powerful leadership skills in their ranks that don’t vanish on retirement, combined with a deep sense of honour and discipline. Moreover, veterans who have retired often still feel a sense of purpose and service that can be channelled into upholding the rights of women and girls. This then serves a dual purpose – that of furthering human rights and equality in India and that of providing ex-service personnel a sense of community and usefulness.

They can add value by becoming champions by speaking up at the community level for the rights of women and girls, supporting and assisting local authorities in a massive advocacy campaign throughout India on gender equ…

Reuters: Gender equality and equity in Health will anchor drive towards sustainable national development

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As the UNDP Administrator, Ms Helen Clark remarked, “Women are powerful agents of change – and empowering women benefits whole societies.”  A good place to begin is empowering Kenya’s youth, especially girls. The multiplier effect of girls’ education on several aspects of development is now well documented.  Education reduces high fertility rates, lowers infant and child mortality rates, lowers maternal mortality rates and increases labour force participation. Empowering, educating and employing Kenya’s women and girls will launch our economy to new heights and ensure Kenya reaps a demographic dividend. His Excellency, President Uhuru Kenyatta, has stressed that “Progress for women is progress for all …….”  For development to be sustainable and resilient, it must be inclusive and equitable, given that half of humanity are women, their empowerment is a must and not an option. My take: http://news.trust.org/item/20160412063631-p302r/

Reuters: Promise not peril: Can investing in health deter violent extremism?

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The concept of “health as a bridge for peace” may be resonating in this county, which has seen the scourge of internecine conflicts and cross border attacks. In her paper 'Health as Bridge for Peace' presented in Paris in 1997, Judith Large introduced the concept of health care as bridge for peace. In her typology of violence she coined the term structural violence. She argues that structural violence is not always synonymous with armed conflict. “The nexus between effective health services and security is now becoming clearer. An adequate and equitable health care system gives an essential form of security and we are quite optimistic that this project is the beginning of a new narrative for communities here,” says Mandera County Governor Ali Roba. According to WHO, it works even better when all actors get involved in post-war reconstruction. What happens is that health workers, a key pillar in delivering health programmes in conflict and post-conflict situations, contribute …