Women's Leadership and Political Participation - Economic Empowerment -  
Ending Violence Against Women - Peace and Security - Governance and National Planning - Post-2015 Development Agenda and SDGs
(Sustainable Development Goals) - HIV and AIDS
President's Message

Lalita Janke UN Headquarters 17 May 2016
Lalita Janke, UN Headquarters - 17 May 2016
I hope you are all enjoying the endless days of summer!

It was incredible to have so many members gathered together in New York in June for a whirlwind weekend of meetings. 

We were enlightened by our tour of the United Nations and honored to be UN Women's guests for a lunch presentation. One of the many highlights was an introduction to UN Women's new Flagship Programming Initiatives being implemented through a portfolio of country and regional projects by a global policy support project. We plan to fully support these initiatives and have included a link to the Flagship Brief in this newsletter for more detailed information.  

Our warm appreciation goes to UN Women Deputy Executive Director, Lakshmi Puri, and everyone at UN Women and the UN Trust Fund to End Violence for the generous gift of their time and knowledge. A special thanks to Queenee Choudhury, Donor Relations and Resource Mobilization Specialist, for her work in facilitating the briefing.

It was also a great pleasure to recognize chapters at the annual meeting for their extraordinary achievements in fundraising and increasing membership this year. Congratulations to all of the chapter leaders and volunteers. Know that you are appreciated for your selfless work!

I am heartened we are united in our efforts to achieve Planet 50/50 by the year 2030. Working together, we can ensure a better life for all women. 

Lalita Janke
UN Women
12 Flagship Programming Initiatives  
Addressing Sustainable Development Goals  
  • Women's Political Empowerment & Leadership
  • Women's Access to Justice
  • Women's Access to Land and Productive Resources for Climate-Resilient Agriculture
  • Stimulating Equal Opportunities for Women Entrepreneurs through Affirmative Procurement, Investment & Supply Chain Policies
  • Income Security through Decent Work & Social Protection for Women
  • Prevention and Access to Essential Services to End Violence Against Women
  • Safe Cities and Safe Public Spaces
  • Women's Leadership, Empowerment, Access & Protection (LEAP) in Crisis Response
  • Addressing the Gender Inequality of Risk & Promoting Community Resilience to Natural Hazards in a Changing Climate (DRM)
  • Women's Engagement in Peace, Security and Recovery
  • Better Production and Use of Gender Statistics for Evidence-Based Localization of the SDGs
  • Transformative Financing for Gender Equality & Women's Empowerment

Read the full Flagship Brief here!

Women Improving Peace & Security
Image result for peace dove png 

Summer 2016 Newsletter

UN Women joins the #WeAreHere movement with 5 original films about everyday women working toward conflict resolution in Iraq, Syria, Libya & Palestine.  Watch them here!
UN Women: Hosting High-Level Roundtable at 
World Humanitarian Summit

Phumzile & Graca Machel WHS 2016
UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka and former First Lady to both Mozambique and South Africa,  Graca Machel

An initiative of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the first World Humanitarian Summit was held in Istanbul May 23-4th and brought together governments, humanitarian organizations, people affected by humanitarian crises and new partners including the private sector to propose solutions to the most pressing challenges and set an agenda to keep humanitarian action fit for the future.
UN Women hosted one of the seven High-Level Leaders' Roundtables on the theme of "Women and Girls: Catalyzing Action to Achieve Gender Equality." 

Read the Roundtable's Core Commitments here.
UN Women:  R- E- S- U- L- T- S

UN Women knows that results count. They must be measured whenever possible. The first two years of implementation of their Strategic Plan point to encouraging results and successes, with  progress for 2017 meeting  71% of all targets achieved or on track!

"Our world is plagued by continuing violations of the rights of women and girls, threats to peace and security, climate shocks, slow economic recovery, global health pandemics, growing migration and a refugee crisis. These all have a disproportionately heavy effect on women and girls. We are also still to learn the full impact of the exit of a valued member from the European Union.

Despite the changes in the world we have to keep the promise of leaving no one behind. We must not allow backsliding on equality, rights and empowerment of women and girls. Women and girls are the backbone to ending poverty, and ensuring a healthier, inclusive world." - from opening speech by UN Women Exec. Dir. Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka at the Annual Session of the Executive Board, June 27 in NY. ( Full text of the speech is here .)  

To view UN Women's Strategic Plan, click here .

Hot Off the Press: 
UN Women Annual Report 2015- 2016


The  Annual Report documents UN Women's work to foster women's empowerment and gender equality around the world. It highlights some of the organization's initiatives during the year and provides an overview of of new programs and projects.

Read the full report here!

Congratulations to the Winners of 
U.S. National Committee's First Annual 
It's All Big When You Are Changing the World Awards
  • Supporting UN Women's Mission Through USNC-UN Women -
    San  Francisco Chapter , increased fundraising by 35x
  • Supporting UN Women's Mission Through USNC-UN Women - Greater Los Angeles Chapter, increased fundraising by 10x
  • Stepping It Up For Membership Award - Houston Chapter , doubled membership
  • Honorable Mention Supporting UN Women's Mission Through USNC-UN Women - Chicago Chapter, increased fundraising by 7x
  • Highest Donation to Support UN Women's Mission Through USNC-UN Women - Gulf Coast Chapter
  • Recognition of Service To the Board -  Luci Hamilton , outgoing USNC Board Member 
  • President's Award for Exemplary Service - Luz Van Meek, USNC Board Member VP Strategic Panning

Thank you to our incredible chapters, board members and all of those who donate their time, talents and financial resources to USNC!

Your generosity helps ensure we can continue our critical mission of g enerating awareness and financial support for UN Women's programs to achieve gender equality and empowerment of women.

U.S. National Committee for UN Women :
Annual Meeting 2016

USNC members gather for a tour at UN Headquarters

The U.S. National Committee met at the Shelburne Hotel in NYC on June 24 - 25th for its annual meetings. As always, the participants enjoyed a lively exchange of ideas, set future goals and had fun!

To celebrate this year's theme of getting to know the UN and UN Women, Friday morning started with an inspiring tour of the United Nations - a new experience for many attendees. Later, USNC board members and chapter presidents were honored to attend a lunch briefing at UN Women headquarters. UN Women and UN Trust Fund to End Violence senior representatives described their programs and initiatives, then hosted a robust Q&A session. UN Women Deputy Executive Director, Lakshmi Puri, also spoke to the group and enjoyed a presentation of an SDG-themed scultpure by Vero Beach artist, Cristina Abizaid.

The day was topped off by a no-host reception at the stunning Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square. Thank you again Metro NY chapter for organizing this delightful evening!

 Board members and chapter presidents gather for a Lunch Briefing at UN Women Headquarters
USNC convened its annual meeting of the membership on Saturday, followed by chapter and board meetings. The groups gathered together for a delicious lunch with guest speaker Nathan Wilson who described his work combating human trafficking.

Thank you to all attendees for your engagement and enthusiasm!

Incoming Chapter Presidents!

  • Carrie Avila, 
    Miami Chapter
  • Anita Coleman, 
    SoCal Chapter
  • Meredith Jones, 
    East Florida Chapter
  • Mary Luke, 
    Metro New York Chapter
  • Tsegga Medhin, 
    North Carolina Chapter

San Francisco Bay Area Chapter: 
In Support of HeForShe Champions For Change Celebration
Global Voices Film Festival 

Our San Francisco Chapter held two events in a month, beginning with their In Support of HeForShe Champions for Change Celebration on April 14th. The celebration honored five Bay Area men shattering gender barriers for the empowerment of women and girls in their community and beyond. 

Partnering with co-sponsors WeWork and TriNet, the evening featured a discussion with the five honorees regarding the work they do for the sake of advancing women and girls rights, as well as tips for how the larger Bay Area community may do so. Even  City Hall was illuminated in as a gesture of support.

On May 22, the chapter hosted its inaugural  Global Voices Film Festival  in the Premier Theater at Lucasfilm, featuring 7 shorts and 2 feature-length films. A filmmaker awards after-party was co-hosted by Lipstick & Politics and Sessions restaurant. The festival showcased new independent films written and directed by women,  highlighting the need to support women in the film industry and help change the discourse of gender representation in film.

Utah Chapter:
Gala in Support of HeForShe

On Saturday, July 9th, the USNC Utah Chapter held its sold out  HeForShe Gala.  The event featured a guest panel of Salt Lake City leaders and scholars sharing their commitment to promoting women's issues. A ttendees signed HeForShe pledges, enjoyed fabulous finger foods and mingled with panelists and like-minded participants.

The chapter raised funds, added new friends, promoted the U.S. National Committee and UN Women, and increased their membership!

The Utah chapter is proud to announce its involvement in helping Salt Lake City become a City for CEDAW! Mayor Jackie Biskupski is very supportive of the chapter's efforts and has given the green light for the local Municipal Committee to work on getting a CEDAW ordinance passed before the end of this year. Nice work, Utah!

Chicago Chapter :
Event in support of HeForShe

USNC's  Chicago Chapter held its first event in support of HeForShe on May 22nd at Fremont in Chicago's River North neighborhood. Honoring two years of progress as a chapter and re-energizing its membership and volunteers around UN Women's successful  HeForShe  campaign. Attendees were photographed with their customized In Support of HeForShe signs and signed their chapter's letter calling for increased federal funding of UN Women for fiscal year 2017.

Greater Los Angeles Chapter: 
LA Media Summit  in support of 

Our  Greater LA Chapter hosted its first  L.A. Media Summit in support of HeForShe on May 21st at the #YouTubeSpaceLA. Chapter president Cathy Hillman presided over the evening with the help of actor and poet Sean Hill as Emcee. Academy Award winning actress Patricia Arquette, writer and director Joss Whedon, Executive Director of the ACLU for Southern California Hector Villagra, and CNN reporter Carol Costello were some of the contributors addressing the evening's theme of achieving gender parity in the entertainment industry . The chapter sends a special shout-out to its Board of Directors,  Laura Azzalina, Angela Hernandez and Amber Harden for their work in making the evening a success!
Greater Houston Chapter:
Global Healthcare Summit & Gala
In Support of HeForShe
The USNC  Greater Houston Chapter held a multi-day series of events featuring a table discussion on domestic violence with U.S. Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee, motivational speaker Devin T. Robinson X. "Egypt" and Pat Houston, former manager to pop star Whitney Houston. A lively weekend continued with a lecture by the U.S. Medical Soccer Team for students at Hartman Middle School and Jonas High School on healthcare followed by a physicians vs. celebrities soccer match in support of #HeForShe .

Florida International University Club:
Women's Empowerment Weekend

In April, the USNC Florida International University Club held its  Women's Empowerment Weekend , which included a "Self-Care Fair," film screening and luncheon in honor of women making a difference in their local community. Honorees were given awards as a token of thanks for their work. Designed with the inclusion of women of all ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds in mind, the event left attendees feeling empowered and newly motivated to work for change in their community.

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