On Tuesday, January 28th Parliament Chair, Audrey Kitagawa, joined the World Council of Churches, ACT Alliance, UN Women, UNFPA, Islamic Relief USA, Church & Society: The United Methodist Church, Seventh-day Adventist’ Church, Soka Gakkai International, and the United Religions Initiative in conjunction with Ecumenical Women, Anglican Communion, Faith in Beijing+25 Coalition and Lutheran World Federation, in a preparatory workshop to explore the specific challenges and opportunities for faith based organizations to engage in the Beijing+25 review linking to the UN anniversary for the Symposium on the Role of Religion and Faith Based Organizations in International Affairs UN75 and Beijing+25.
In March of 2020, the global community will mark the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women and adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action (1995). A five-year milestone will be reached towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. 2020 is therefore a pivotal year for the accelerated realization of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls, everywhere.
The workshop featured over 80 leaders representing diverse faiths and traditions at the Church Center for the UN, 2nd Floor located at 777 UN Plaza, New York, NY 10017. The programming focused on faith engagement – strategies and commitments – to advocacy to the Beijing +25 review process and its implementation, through the 6 thematic cluster areas:
• Inclusive development, shared prosperity and decent work
• Poverty eradication, social protection and social services
• Freedom from violence, stigma and stereotypes
• Participation, accountability and gender-responsive institutions
• Peaceful and inclusive societies
• Environmental conservation, protection and rehabilitation
Ms. Kitagawa participated in the Women, Peace, and Security program alongside Simona Cruciani, Special Adviser on the Prevention of Genocide, UN Office of Genocide Prevention and Responsibility to Protect and Ms. Dinah Lakehal, Program Officer, Global Network of Women Peacebuilders highlighting how this mechanism links to Beijing+25 and opportunities for faith actors to influence the agenda and accelerate progress on implementation. Peace, security, and disarmament issues remain an important unifying area of concern for people of faith. There is a need to keep a spotlight on these issues and produce tangible results. The presentations will help participants understand the current challenges in women's peace and security agenda and ideas on how to make progress. View the recording of the program below!
The discussions were followed by an interfaith service in the Tillman Chapel to mark the upcoming International Week of Peace and Harmony. Enjoy images from the event below!