Before the opening of the 60th CSW, for the first time UN Women, World YWCA and UN Inter‐Agency Network on Youth have organized the CSW Youth Forum on 11-12 March 2016, which was held in New York, and gathered over 300 young participants.
After an engaging opening performance by Tennille Amor and her song “I am a Girl… Woman of the World…”, UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka has opened this first CSW Youth Forum declaring “This is a defining moment when women and youth make an alliance… with the potential to change the world”.
The UN SDG Action Campaign has participated on the panel by introducing the SDGs to the youth participants at the Forum. A special interest has been highlighted on introducing youth viewpoints through the World We Want 2030 Platform, and more specifically with the e-consultation on SDG 5: Gender Equality. This was a great opportunity for the Policy Strategy Group, youth-leg organizations, and individuals who may not be able to attend the CSW Youth Forum to make sure their opinions and voices on gender equality are taken into consideration. We have shared a compilation of results from this online consultation linked with Gender Equality issues. For example, to the question “What does Gender Equality mean to you?”, a lot of responses focused on inclusion and empowerment of all genders, effective laws and legislation, and that “Gender equality is integral for sustainable development”.
During the 60th session of the CSW, the UN SDG Action Campaign has also hosted an interactive side-event, on 15 March at the Museum of Tolerance, focusing on how innovative technology tools are being used to promote gender equality and to build empathy. The SDG Action Campaign has invited three dynamic women entrepreneurs: Tiffany Pham, Founder & CEO of Mogul, Gesche Haas, Founder of Dreamers//Doers, and Kristin Gutekunst, Project Manager at the SDG Action Campaign. As women entrepreneurs, they explained how they leverage technology to bring employment opportunities, education and networking platforms to women. These women are in the field, taking action right now. Their stories further emphasize the need to break silos in development, as all the SDGs are interlinked and can only be realized together.
Finally, the side-event has given the audience the opportunity to “meet” dynamic women through the Campaign’s virtual reality series: “Clouds Over Sidra” and “Waves of Grace”.