UNESCO, Paris - "Every political promise is addressed to children, every genuine commitment requires confronting the challenge of transmission. From a spiritual, metaphysical and human point of view, we can't invent a new world without newborn babies" - Jean Birnbaum, from his book "Seuls les enfants changent le monde" (Only children change the world).
We referred to this powerful quote at the recent two-day 15th International Forum ‘Transforming mentalities’, where we spoke on behalf of mothers around the world.
Organized by the NGO-UNESCO Liaison Committee, which represents the community of NGOs in Official Partnership with UNESCO, the Forum took place on 24th and 25th January 2024 at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris. Its aim was to ‘gather examples of good practices in challenging stagnant discriminations and inequalities within societies and build concrete recommendations for action at various levels’.
Our President Anne-Claire de Liedekerke took part in the session ‘building change’ and delivered some key messages:
Ending her address, Anne-Claire stressed that we need to ‘change mentalities by working for and with mothers’, reminding the audience that MMM is proud to count among its members many associations that work on the ground with mothers, supporting and empowering them.
Our former Project Director and a member of the Forum Steering Committee, Caroline de Senneville moderated a panel discussion ‘Approaches to Women’s Empowerment’, giving the floor to leaders of international NGOs doing global advocacy and supporting sterling grassroots work – to educate and support women and girls in all their diversity.
Caroline reminded the audience that we can’t talk about transforming mentalities without talking about gender equality and the place of women in the world in 2024, in economic, social, political and cultural terms. That according to UN Women, at the current rate of progress, it will take 286 years for the world to achieve gender equality.
Her panel included Ute Scholz, President of Zonta International, Magdie de Kock, World President of Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW), Dr Catherine Bosshart, Vice President of Business and Professional Women for UN matters, International Federation of Business and Professional Women (BPW Intl.), and Maureen Maguire, International President of Soroptimist International.
More information on the Forum ‘Changing mentalities’ is available here.
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