Message from Prof TOMMY KOH Adviser, Unifem Singapore
The most conspicuous parts of the United Nations are the General Assembly, the UN Security Council and the UN Secretary General. The United Nations is, however, much more than this. It has been the stage where ideals have borne fruit and made global and local changes possible over the 65 years of its existence.
Take the ideal of gender equity. For thousands of years, women have been treated as second class human beings. Even in 1945, when the United Nations was founded, women did not have the right to vote in 21 of the 51 Member States. In the space of decades, the United Nations has brought about a revolution in the status of women, particularly, after the adoption of the Convention of the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW).
Although we have come a long way in our quest for gender equity, there are still challenges that we must continue to work against: the trafficking of women and girls for prostitution; the practice of aborting female foetuses because of a preference for boys; the practice of forcing young girls into marriages and the practice of mutilating their genitals. We must intensify our efforts to end all forms of violence against women – whether in armed conflict or in a domestic setting. In addition, we must continue to work for the rights of women to education, employment and to lead dignified and empowered lives.
I have been an adviser to UNIFEM Singapore for more than a decade. I have watched the organization grow from just the will and perseverance of a few good women to what it is today – a strong, unified and dedicated organization that is engaged, not only in projects in Singapore, focused on ending violence against women and empowering women, but also working with NGOs around the region against the sex-trafficking of women and children.
I would like to commend UNIFEM Singapore and its team of dedicated women, and a few good men too, as well as the many individuals and corporate donors who have embraced the cause of gender equity and have supported UNIFEM Singapore in its mission.
I hope this year's SNOW ball will help UNIFEM Singapore raise much needed funds for its good work.
I wish everyone a magical evening ahead.
Ambassador Prof Tommy Koh
Ambassador Prof Tommy Koh's ties with the United Nations go back many years. He was Singapore's permanent representative to the United Nations from 1968 to 1971 and again from 1974 to 1984. He was president of the third United Nations conference on the law of the sea from 1981 to 1982 as well as chairman of the preparatory committee and the main committee of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development from 1990 to 1992.
CALL FOR HELP
UNIFEM SINGAPORE 10TH YEAR COMMEMORATIVE BOOK
For the past decade, the National Committee for UNIFEM Singapore has been hard at work at building a safe environment for women and children in developing nations across the region. Be it encouraging women empowerment in Nepal and Laos or battling violence and sex trafficking in Batam and Aceh. Be it running regular school talks, celebrating International Women's Day or fighting for a Day off for domestic workers. Be it holding SNOW fundraisers, or partnering with local banks and brands to help those less privileged.
For more detailed commentary on UNIFEM's projects these past ten years, check out our commemorative book HERE.
To view UNIFEM's 10 Year Anniversary Video now online, please visit HERE.
UNIFEM INCONVERSATION SERIES
UNIFEM INConversation Series was launched with an up close and personal conversation with Dato Ambiga, winner of the 2009 International Woman of Courage Award. She is a resolute advocate of women's equality and their full political participation. In the face of death threats and intimidation, she has emerged as a strong voice of tolerance and justice.
Awarded as the CNN's Hero of the Year 2010 for her work with Maiti Nepal, Anuradha Koirala arrived in Singapore on May 16 for a series of public awareness events in schools, corporations and for the general public thanks to UN Women NC Singapore and Prospero World. Koirala was accompanied by Bishwo Khadka, Director of Maiti. Within the metropolis of Singapore, where the issue of human trafficking is not frequently discussed, Koirala piqued the interest and action of over 1,300 individuals during her week-long trip.
Siddharth Kara, a former investment banker and business executive, is an adjunct professor and the first Fellow on human trafficking at the Harvard Kennedy School’s Carr Center for Human Rights Policy. He is also the author of the award-winning book, Sex Trafficking: Inside the Business of Modern Slavery, the first of three books he is writing on the subjects of human trafficking and contemporary slavery. Sex Trafficking was named co-winner of the prestigious 2010 Frederick Douglass Award at Yale University for the best non-fiction book on slavery. Kara's is the first book on modern slavery to receive the award.
Other renowned speakers include Ms Mony Pen, Anush Gupta from Goonj, Ms Melissa Kwee.
BREAKING NEWS (05/03/12)
MANDATORY WEEKLY REST DAYS FOR FOREIGN DOMESTIC WORKERS FROM 2013
"We applaud the government on requiring a rest day per week for foreign domestic workers (FDWs) receiving or renewing their work permit after 1 Jan 2013.
A weekly day off is an internationally recognized right for workers and we praise MOM for championing this issue through wide ranging consultations culminating in the new requirement. What better news could we have received in the week leading up to International Women's Day on March 8!"
Message from Dr Tony Tan President, Republic of Singapore Click here
Dear friends and supporters of UN Women,
I want to thank you for supporting this commendable effort to empower women and girls in the region. The work of UN Women, reaching out to underprivileged women throughout Asia - to provide women and girls with an education and access to healthcare, to defend them against violence, and to protect them in their communities - is noble and worthy of our support.
Funds raised from UN Women Singapore's annual SNOW dinners in the past have gone a long way in helping thousands of women in the region, whether those in crisis or in micro enterprises.
Throughout the 12 years UN Women Singapore has been in existence, originally as UNIFEM, the organization has become one of the forefront leaders of thought and action in the area of women's issues in Singapore and around the region, bringing together academic expertise, governments and embassy staff, the public as well as corporations.
I am happy to support UN Women Singapore in one of my first public engagements as President of Singapore. I encourage you to continue supporting UN Women with your generosity.
With best wishes
Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam President
Republic of Singapore
PRESENTING THE BUY TO SAVE 2011 VIDEO!
Melissa Hyak (Channel NewsAsia Presenter), Joe Augustin (Radio DJ Lush 99.5FM), Debra Teng (Actress), Zhang Tingjun (UNIFEM Volunteer and Founder of The Chain Reaction Project), Zoe Adamopoulos (UNIFEM Volunteer)
There are 16 actions that you can take, to contribute towards the movement to end violence against women and girls.
You can learn more about the 16 Days of Activism Campaign, take a quiz, post your views, join an international webinar for girls, engage men and boys, send a Wake Up Call to make others aware, add your voice to end street harassment, and more. Click here to Take action.
The official UN Observance of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women is on November 23 at the UN Headquarters in New York. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and UN Women Executive Director Michelle Bachelet will be speaking with youth activists from around the world about their initiatives on ending violence against women and girls. Join us live from the event! Watch the webcast here and follow #UNiTEyouth on Twitter!
If you are organizing your own events and campaigns during the 16 Days of Activism, remember to post them on www.saynotoviolence.org.
Say NO – UNiTE team, UN Women
PROJECT INSPIRE GRAND FINALS
In case you missed it, check out scenes from the Project Inspire Grand Finals. An incredible journey for everyone involved!
The launch event for UN Women, Honouring the Past – Envisioning the Future for Women and Girls, was hosted by Ms. Michelle Bachelet, Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director, UN Women. It was emceed by Ms. Juju Chang, news anchor of ABC's Good Morning America, with other distinguished speakers and performers.
EMPOWERING WOMEN HELPS GLOBAL GROWTH: HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON
By Hillary Rodham Clinton - Mar 7, 2011
One of the biggest growth markets in the world may surprise you.
You've heard about the opportunities opening up in countries like China, regions like Asia and industries like green technology. But one major emerging market hasn't received the attention it deserves: women.
Today, there are more than 200 million women entrepreneurs worldwide. Women earn more than $10 trillion every year, which is expected to grow by $5 trillion over the next several years. In many developing countries, women's incomes are growing faster than men's. To read more, please click here. "here"
UNIFEM FILM SERIES
UNIFEM MEMBERSHIP-LOYALTY CARD
UNIFEM Singapore is proudly launching our first "Invest in Her Life and Shape Her Future" membership - loyalty card.
In addition to existing benefits, UNIFEM members will also receive special discounts and offers by our partner merchants like special offers for yoga classes.