Some 140 million women and girls have undergone Female Genital Mutilation or Cutting FGM/C around the world. This custom is practiced predominantly in Africa, and some countries in Asia and the Middle East.
A concert was held at United Nations Headquarters in New York on 28 February featuring UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador Angelique Kidjo, an advocate for the elimination of the custom altogether.
UN Multimedia Photo
Discussions continue in the struggle to ban the practice. President Bill Clinton tweeted recently about an upcoming trip to Ghana by Hillary and Chelsea in support of ending this horrific tradition completely.
Colleagues at the Department of Economic & Social Affairs (DESA) held a successful youth forum at the UN in New York, 27 February on the issue of youth employment. The aim – to find better jobs for youth who are well-educated but can’t find work as a turbulent economic tide sweeps the world.
The event was streamed live on Facebook and Twitter, receiving more than 2,000 tweets from people concerned about this dilemma around the globe. Opening the event was Dr. Asha Rose Migiro, Deputy Secretary-General at the UN. She warned that women, especially in rural areas where they struggle to lift themselves out of poverty, are hit hard by the crisis.
Photo by Allvoices
Migiro calls for systematic strategies to empower women in rural areas
The current economic and global financial crisis is affecting people in developed and developing countries. The underlying cause – greed by unscrupulous financiers. Millions in the United States lost their jobs, homes and even their families. Ripples of the meltdown unsettled global markets and those affected in North America live in fear. Most are still looking for jobs with little chances of securing work in their field. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says “the global economic crisis is a global jobs crisis. And youth are hardest hit.”
The United Nations is hosting a forum at its headquarters in New York on 27 February to find solutions to end the crisis facing the young. Follow the conversation live on Twitter at #UN4Youth. Watch video at http://goo.gl/IAVfp to join the discussion on Facebook, Livestream and UNwebcast.
Uganda is facing a crisis as children stricken with nodding disease die at an early age. Nodding disease or nodding syndrome is a new, little-known disease which emerged in Sudan in the 1980’s according to Wikipedia.
Photo by Gizmodo
Now more cases are showing up in Uganda baffling health officials in the country. The deadly disease causes seizures and often leads to impaired physical and mental development in children. In some cases, blindness occurs. In northern Uganda some 3,000 children are affected. Efforts made by the Ministry of Health for additional funding to treat patients who linger, waiting for medical assistance failed to pass in the House of Parliament. Instead, the Minister of Finance instructed colleagues in the Ministry of Health to slash their budget to deal with the dilemma. Talks continue.
As a Television Producer I’m always on the look out for compelling stories to cover and this one is in development for my next mission to the continent of Africa.