United Nations International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women
E-Newsletter - May 2008
Current UN-INSTRAW work/activities
Colombian Women in Spain Invest in the Well-being of their families
The study Gender and Remittances: Colombian Migration to Spain from the Central Western Metropolitan Area (AMCO), prepared by UN-INSTRAW and the International Organization for Migration (IOM), analyzes the dynamics of the highly feminized migration from the Central-Western Metropolitan Area (AMCO) of Colombia to Spain, the flow of remittances sent and received by women and the impact of those remittances on the development of the AMCO region. The study found that 54%of remittances received in the AMCO region are sent by women. Women send money to their families in Colombia more consistently and more frequently than men, and the women who remain in Colombia constitute 70.7% of all remittance recipients, which shows a marked tendency towards the female administration of remittances. Moreover, gradual changes in traditional roles can be observed, such as the progressive empowerment of women who send remittances and those who receive them, and significant male participation in child-rearing and household tasks in both sending and recipient households.
Migration and remittances have positive impacts on gender equality in the Philippines
The study Gender, Remittances and Development: The case of Filipino Migration to Italy, published by UN-INSTRAW, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Filipino Women’s Council (FWC), assesses the impact of remittances sent by Filipino migrants living in Italy on gender-sensitive local rural development in their communities of origin. Italy is the 6th most popular destination country amongst Filipino migrants, who are more feminized than any other migrant group and concentrated in the domestic service sector. Researchers collected qualitative data in Italy and selected rural communities in the Philippines, which showed that Filipino women in Italy send remittances to the Philippines each month, more consistently than their male counterparts, to cover basic consumption needs, education and health. The study also revealed that migration and remittances have had a positive impact on gender equality, women’s economic empowerment and increasing and diversifying employment opportunities for women.
Read the media kit...
Voices from the field: How migration improves children’s education in Philippines
This is one of a series of interviews carried out by UN-INSTRAW with migrants who have sent remittances to their countries of origin that looks how they have supported their children’s education and the general well-being of their families. This particular interview was conducted with Boyet, a poor young man from a rural community in the Philippines who migrated to Italy for work, leaving behind his wife and their five children. Boyet’s case is an example of how money earned in a destination country has helped a family to cover basic consumption needs, provide a better education for their children and provide much-needed assistance to other poor children in the community.
Read the interview...
Expert Group Meeting on Tracking and Monitoring Gender Equality and HIV/AIDS in Aid Effectiveness
UN-INSTRAW hosted the “Expert Group Consultation on Tracking and Monitoring Gender Equality and HIV/AIDS in Aid Effectiveness” at its headquarters in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic from 28 to 30 May 2008. The meeting, co-organized by UNIFEM and the European Commission, convened a group of experts to identify and promote approaches to ensure that the aid effectiveness agenda advances greater action on and investment in reducing HIV/AIDS among women and girls. Moreover, during the meeting the experts made recommendations on ways to better integrate gender equality in HIV/AIDS in national development planning, implementation and budgeting.
Global Gender News
Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2007 Shows Gender Inequality Continues at Great Cost in the Region
The Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2007, released by the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), shows that despite recent gains in gender equality in the region, appalling disparities remain. In addition to the social and personal costs of gender inequality, there are clear economic ramifications: the region is losing $42 to $47 billion per year because of restrictions on women’s access to employment opportunities and another $16-30 billion per year because of gender gaps in education. The survey proposes several specific recommendations to close the gender gap. Good practices highlighted from across the region and elsewhere show that gender balance can be achieved with limited resources, but this requires changes at the household, societal and national levels. In particular, the report stresses the need for political leadership to redress discrimination against women.
Crafting Human Security in an Insecure World
The Conference “Crafting Human Security in an Insecure World” is being co-convened by the Joan B. Kroc Institute for Peace and Justice (IPJ), the Global Justice Center, the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) and the United Nations International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (UN-INSTRAW). This international working conference aims to probe and address global acquiescence to impunity, gender violence and exclusion that continue to obstruct peacebuilding and deny human security. This event will be held 24-26 September 2008 at the IPJ, University of San Diego, California. The deadline for the submission of applications is 12 September 2008.
For more details/application...
Women Have a Higher Risk of Depression than Men
For both social and biological reasons, women are twice as likely as men to experience depression. Women earn less than men and have a lower socioeconomic status, which means lack of control over and uncertainty about the future, which can contribute to depression, along with other factors such as a heavy workload. Single mothers have one of the highest poverty rates in the United States and often need to work multiple jobs to make ends meet. Women are also more likely than men to shoulder the burden of both paid work and domestic responsibilities and women are increasingly taking on the role of caregiver to older generations, a situation that increases their workload even further. In addition, women experience more sexual and physical abuse, which are also known to increase the risk of depression.
Caribbean Action Plan for Gender and Media Advocacy
The World Association for Christian Communication (WACC) and Women’s Media Watch (WMW) held a 3-day Regional Training Workshop on Gender and Media Advocacy from 10 to 12 April, 2008 in Kingston, Jamaica. The event was attended by media representatives from ten Caribbean countries and members of civil society. The workshop was a follow-up to the Global Media Monitoring Project (GMMP 2005), which mapped the representation of women in the news media in 76 countries. The results of the study showed that women are seriously underrepresented in the media – making up less than a quarter of news subjects, and less than a fifth of news subjects related to government and politics or economy and business. The workshop resulted in an Action Plan of six projects to be carried out at the national and regional levels, including awareness campaigns, workshops, training, and research and gender integration in communication courses.
Nominations Sought for 2008 UN Human Rights Prize
The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights announced on 4 April that it is seeking nominations for the 2008 United Nations Prize in the Field of Human Rights. The Prize, established by the General Assembly in 1966 and first awarded on 10 December 1968, is awarded to individuals or organizations once every five years for “outstanding achievements in the field of human rights”. The Prize was first given out on the 20th anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Male and female leaders who are well known in their home regions or in human rights or humanitarian circles have been awarded this Prize. The closing date for the receipt of nominations is 15 July 2008, and the Prize will be awarded by the UN General Assembly in New York on 10 December 2008 – the 60th anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
For more details/application...
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UN-INSTRAW is an Institute devoted to applied research, training and knowledge management in partnership with governments, the United Nations Agencies, civil society and academia to achieve gender equality and women’s empowerment.