Georgia and Mongolia join hands with the United Nations Development Programme to discuss national experience in empowering rural women and girls at the 62nd UN Commission on the Status of Women.
New York. 12 March 2018 – UNDP and the Delegations of Georgia and Mongolia to the United Nations hosted a side event at the 62nd session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW62) in New York, USA, giving floor to a substantial discussion about the role of women’s political participation in empowering rural women and girls.
The event was led by Kaha Imnadze, Permanent Representative of Georgia to the United Nations; Tamar Chugoshvili, First Vice-Speaker of the Georgian Parliament and Chair of the Gender Equality Council; and Munkhuu Oyunchimeg of the Mongolia Delegation to the United Nations.
Patrick Keuleers, UNDP Director of the Governance and Peacebuilding Cluster, and Niels Scott, UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative in Georgia, addressed the participants.
“Development cannot be sustainable if it is achieved without gender equality and the empowerment of women, as well as without decision-making going all the way into rural communities. This was apparent during the Millennium Development Goals and is even more apparent now, as we move towards the Agenda 2030,” Niels Scott said.
Tamar Chugoshvili, First Vice-Speaker of the Georgian Parliament and Chair of the Gender Equality Council, stressed that political participation is a vital precondition for achieving meaningful gender equality for all, including rural women and girls.
“In Georgia, we strive to achieve gender equality by introducing gender-sensitive policies and institutional mechanisms at the central and local levels. In the coming days, the Parliament will launch a discussion about mandatory gender quotas. If adopted, this provision will increase number of women in elected bodies to the world’s minimum standard of 30 percent,” Tamar Chugoshvili said.
Practical insights about the challenges faced by rural women in Georgia were presented by an invited speaker – Ketevan Khidasheli, women’s rights activist from one of the poorest regions of Georgia and 2017 champion of Kato Mikeladze Prize – the country’s highest award for outstanding achievements in supporting women’s rights and gender equality.
“Wellbeing of families, communities and regions rests on the shoulders of rural women. Nevertheless, their rights are still unprotected and their voice not heard enough. Empowerment of rural women and girls is far from being a local issue. It is fundamental for sustainable development and progress of the whole society,” Ketevan Khidasheli said.
Ghanashyam Ojha of the Election Commission of Nepal joined the event to share Nepal’s experience in promoting women in elective office at the local, provincial and federal levels.
The empowerment of rural women and girls is the main theme of the 62nd session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW62), the UN’s largest forum on gender equality, taking place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 12 – 23 March 2018. The Commission brings together global leaders, actors from civil society and private sector, and UN partners and activists from around the world, focusing on the status of rights and empowerment of all women and girls, everywhere.