Second Quarter Newsletter  April-June 2017
News Highlights
UN Women Executive Director Visits Ukraine and Moldova

UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka travelled first to Ukraine and then to Moldova in June to reaffirm UN Women's commitment to both countries in advancing gender equality and empowering women and girls. She met with officials, parliamentarians, donors, women's groups, internally displaced women, survivors of domestic violence and women facing multiple forms of discrimination. Read more about her visit to Ukraine and Moldova.
In Focus: A Major New EU Partnership to Change Minds, End Violence

The European Union and UN Women launched a three-year regional initiative to end discrimination and violence against women in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo[1], Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey. “Implementing Norms, Changing Minds” marks a major contribution to the EU Year to End Violence against Women, and the EU-UN Women partnership to empower and protect the rights of women and girls. It aims to reform policies in line with international standards, transform discriminatory social norms, and empower women and girls who survive gender-based violence. Read more on the initiative. See the launches in Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Kosovo, Montenegro and Serbia.
[1] This and all references to Kosovo in this document shall be understood to be in full compliance with UN Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999).
In Focus: A Regional Call for Action on the SDGs

Regional UN offices collaborated on a joint Regional Advocacy Paper spotlighting key policy recommendations for countries in Europe and Central Asia to achieve the 2030 Agenda, with UN Women playing a leading role in comprehensively integrating gender considerations. The paper looks at measures to remove bottlenecks and considers policy solutions so marginalized groups are not left behind. It emphasizes integrated development strategies that build on links across social, economic and environmental concerns. Such strategies encourage actions and investments, across governments and societies that lead towards sustainable development. Regional UN agencies are now finalizing a Guidance Note to provide a roadmap for countries in Europe and Central Asia to integrate gender equality into the nationalization and localization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). 
Empowering Women in the Economy 

Tackling unpaid care in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
The first national conference on unpaid care work, gender inequality and the promise of the "care economy" took place in Skopje in June. It conducted a comprehensive assessment of the burden of unpaid care work, still predominantly shouldered by women. Read More.
Presenting global solutions on women and energy at EXPO 2017
UN Women is showcasing leading global solutions where women are extending access to energy while fighting climate change. EXPO 2017 takes place in Astana, Kazakhstan, from 10 June to 10 September 2017. Read More.
Centers in Georgia foster livelihoods and community
Community resource centres supported by UN Women help internally displaced women get back on their feet. Women can develop ideas to improve their livelihoods and apply for co-investments. The centres also host community activities that strengthen social ties. Read More.
Leadership and Political Participation

Albanian elections usher in historic number of women MPs 
National elections in June yielded a milestone share of women parliamentarians—28 per cent, up from 18 per cent. Women candidates benefited from a gender quota as well as public forums organized by UN Women and partners to mobilize voters. Read More and check out the video.
Gains take off for rural women in Kyrgyzstan 
Women in villages across the country are taking charge of their lives and livelihoods after completing leadership and skills training. Most participants now run small businesses. Some have joined local councils as vocal proponents of women’s rights. Read More. 
Ending Violence against Women

In Moldova, women survivors break the cycle of violence
Women who have overcome gender-based violence know how to end and prevent it. That’s the premise of UN Women’s Positive Champions initiative. It uses a peer-support model so that women share their experiences, and help each other to break the cycle of violence. Read More.

Housing gives hope to domestic violence survivors in Kosovo[1]
Domestic violence survivors are often in acute need of long-term housing. In the town of Gjakova, a new special Social Housing Commission identifies survivors in need and matches them with apartments available through the municipality. Read More. 

[1]This and all references to Kosovo in this document shall be understood to be in full complience with UN Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999).
Kyrgyzstan adopts a new and progressive domestic violence law 
The law improves protection measures for survivors, simplifies reporting procedures and introduces behaviour correction for perpetrators. Read More.
Peace and Security and Humanitarian Action

Report urges recognition of gender-based violence as a basis for asylum
A new report prepared by a team of international lawyers for UN Women finds that legal gaps in the European Union expose women survivors of gender-based persecution to the risk of being denied asylum. Read More.

Theatre gives a voice to internally displaced women in Ukraine
Interactive theatre workshops and performances for displaced women encourage them to speak out about the barriers they face and seek realistic solutions. Their recommendations now appear in the State Programme on Recovery and Peacebuilding. Read More.

Recognizing women's vital roles in stopping violent extremism
An OSCE-wide counter-terrorism conference highlighted the crucial parts women play in preventing violent extremism. At a packed side event organized by UN Women and UNDP, over 50 experts discussed how to involve women across Europe and Central Asia. Read More.
Governance and National Planning

Turkish deputies study gender-responsive budgeting in Spain
A study visit to Spain, organized by UN Women, allowed Turkish lawmakers to review first-hand the positive impacts of gender-responsive budgeting. Read More.

Albania publishes largest range of gender statistics to date
The National Institute of Statistics published its most comprehensive collection of gender statistics, called Men and Women 2017, to inform better policy-making. Read More.

Sharing best practices from the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
A new video documents leading gender-responsive budgeting practices in three municipalities: Bogovinje, Bitola and Skopje. Municipal authorities and residents share experiences with budgets that are more transparent and committed to gender equality. See the video.
From Where I Stand
In this series, UN Women captures unique and powerful stories of people around the world, showing how they are bringing about change. Here are three examples from Europe and Central Asia.
From where I stand: Victoria Luca
Victoria Luca overcame prejudices against Roma women and now advocates for women’s rights and gender equality. Read More.
From where I stand: Svitlana Chychyrko
Svitlana Chychyrko, displaced by conflict in eastern Ukraine when she was seven-months pregnant, overcame barriers to champion the rights of internally displaced persons. Read More.
From where I stand: Nino Gamisonia
Nino Gamisonia, project coordinator at the Rural Communities Development Agency, is advancing the uptake of clean, affordable solar energy across Georgia. Read More.
Upcoming Events
International workshop for journalists and communications specialists from Moldova on gender-sensitive media, 12-14 September 2017: An assessment of progress one year after a gender self-assessment of media will be followed by peer learning with Swedish journalists. For more information, contact Victoria Puiu,

Study visit for Turkish parliamentarians to Finland and Sweden, 14-19 September: A six-day study visit for members of the Committee on Equality of Opportunity for Women and Men will consider parliamentary mechanisms to advance gender equality. For more information, contact Ebru Demirel,

About UN Women

UN Women is the UN organization dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide. The UN Women Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia, which oversees the work of 13 countries, was established in Istanbul in 2014. To see UN Women’s main areas of work in the region click here.

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