Sophia Fredericks, Social Engagement Intern, National Headquarters Washington D.C.
UNESCO: This February 11th 2017 will be known as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. This day is meant to symbolize a chance or opportunity for women and girls to unite in science. Girls are often held back from various opportunities or careers in science due to stereotypes or restrictions that are social or cultural. This denies the opportunity of girls of reaching their full potential.
It is found that girls who reside in disadvantaged or rural communities feel the effects of this the most. They face challenges such as poverty or inequality. This day was created in order to enforce the idea that women and girls have the right to be empowered and participate in every scientific field. International Day of Women and Girls is also meant to raise awareness of the work and achievements of female scientists as well as create equal opportunities.
A study was done in order to calculate the chances of women and men to achieve a degree of any kind in a field that involves science. The study found that the chances of female to attain a degree were 18%, 8% and 2%. However, the chances of men of attaining a degree in a science related field were 37%, 18%, 6%. Therefore this resolution was set in order to change this statistic and promoting gender equality, allowing women and girls to participate in science as well as empowering them.
Horn of Africa: There are currently significant levels of malnutrition and food insecurity due to a drought in the Horn of Africa. As many as 5.6 million people in Ethiopia are found to be in need of humanitarian assistance through a combination of this drought and the effects of El Niño. There is also found to be a need for livestock because many people depend on their livestock for survival.
There are ongoing efforts to provide humanitarian aid to those in need. Trucks are working to deliver water to communities demonstrating a need for water due to the drought. There is currently an estimated 9.1 million people who are in need of clean drinking water, 1.9 million households are in need of livestock aid and 303,000 children are currently suffering from malnutrition this year.
It was found that 12 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia face food insecurity and are in need of assistance. According to Dominique Burgeon, the Director or the FAO’s Emergency and Rehabilitation Division, “...support to farming families can significantly boost their ability to withstand the impacts of these droughts and soften the blow to their livelihoods.” FAO has now established an Early Warning Early Action fund in hopes of creating a fast plan to be activated whenever there is a humanitarian need for support regarding food, agriculture or nutrition insecurity.