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CSW59/Beijing+20 (2015): The Commission on the Status of Women at United Nations {Final Recap}

CSW 2015_GC4W Recap

“Change is coming. Change has to come” said the UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka at the 2015 Commission on the Status of Women at the UN Nations Headquartered in New York.

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CSW 2015_GC4W Recap

The year 2015 marks 20 years since the landmark Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action was adopted in the Chinese capital at the Fourth World Conference on Women. Hillary Clinton, then United States First Lady, delivered a keynote remarks in which she famously said: “Let it be that human rights are women’s rights – and women’s rights are human rights – once and for all.” The signed resolutions was considered the world’s most comprehensive framework for advancing women’s rights, the 1995 Beijing agreement was signed by 189 governments.

“We need Men to serve as Champions for Women Globally” UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka on France24 news network With the conclusion of the 59th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) in New York at the United Nations Headquarters from 9 to 20 March 2015. Representatives of Member States , UN entities, and ECOSOC-accredited non-governmental organizations (NGOs)  from all regions of the world attend the session. UN Women noted that the main focus was reviewing the progress made so far in the implementation of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action after 20 years of its adoption.

“The time has come for all men, women, children, communities, corporations and nations to rise and participate in ensuring that Gender Equality and Women Empowerment are fully realized – as a normal and expected way of life.” “The fight for Gender Equality is a universal fight.” said Lilian O. Ajayi, Founder and Executive Director Global Connections for Women Foundation (GC4W). Lilian Ajayi’s latest feature on Diplomatic Courier:  The Status of Women and Girls in Africa and the Rest of the World

Lilian Ajayi and Chief Temitope Ajayi at GC4W Awards

Lilian Ajayi and Chief Temitope Ajayi at GC4W International Women’s Day Awards

“Women are the engine of the private sector, women run the economy of any nation – because they are more into commerce then their male counterpart, the power of any currency is in their ability to meet the demand and supply.” Chief Temitope Ajayi (Mama Diaspora) in her address at the Annual Meeting of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund.

The session also addressed opportunities for achieving gender equality, the pertinent need for men’s participation and the empowerment of women in the post-2015 development agenda. Lastly, The Beijing+20 will also included the outcomes of the 23rd special session of the General Assembly, the first five-year assessment conducted after the adoption of the Platform for Action, which highlighted areas requiring further actions and progressive initiatives.

UN Women_GC4W CSW Recap

UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka Closing remarks as-delivered on 20 March 2015:

Let me thank the Bureau of the Commission,

Mme Chair Ms Kanda Vajrabhaya and your team

and the members of your Bureau:

Excellency Mr Ruben Zamora of El Salvador,

Ms Pille Kesler of Estonia,

Mr Mohamed El Bahi of the Sudan and

Ms Christine Low of Switzerland.

I thank you all for your tireless, collaborative efforts during this successful session of the Commission.  I thank the three facilitators for their skillful conduct of negotiations, and for their persistence, and all the delegates who worked alongside you.

I congratulate Member States, civil society and the UN system for a forceful, dynamic and forward-looking session; for frank and fruitful discussions on lessons learned and good practices exchanged; for acknowledging the remaining gaps and challenges; while recognizing that much more still needs to be done, by all stakeholders on the urgent issues that you have raised for our consideration.

We are all aware that there are no shortcuts to realizing gender equality, the empowerment of women and the human rights of women and girls.

Based on the road we have travelled, we know that there are more challenges ahead of us. We know we must continue to work, systematically and relentlessly, to bring about transformation in our families, societies, economies, and political and public spaces.

The fight for gender equality is politically and economically incomplete without human rights.

The inclusion of the voice of civil society will always be a strategic consideration. A diminished space for this voice in the world has a cost for us all.

Excellencies,

I thank you for the Political Declaration, in which you strongly reaffirmed the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the role of civil society and set a target date to end gender inequality.

This will help us all in our common efforts to mobilize for accelerated implementation of the Platform for Action.

Crucially, the Political Declaration contains Ministers’ pledge to take further action to ensure the full, effective, and accelerated implementation of the Beijing Platform for Action.

These actions include:

  1. strengthened implementation of laws, policies, strategies
  2. strengthened and increased support for institutional mechanisms for gender equality
  3. transformation of discriminatory norms and gender stereotypes
  4. significantly increased investment for gender equality to close resource gaps
  5. strengthened accountability for the implementation of existing commitments; and
  6. enhanced capacity building, data collection, monitoring and evaluation

We all have to start working on these commitments immediately, and more intensely, so that in September we can hear about your “stepped up” commitments.  These must be building blocks to ending gender inequality as we implement the Sustainable Development Goals.

We will need to see solid, measurable progress by 2020, and make sure that 2030 is the expiry date for gender inequality. I will rely on all of you to make sure all our governments and broader society “step it up”.

I am also pleased that the Commission has taken steps to strengthen its working methods.  This will further enhance the impact of the Commission.

I thank you all for the high levels of participation by so many Ministers, senior Government officials and experts, as well as representatives of non-governmental organizations.

I welcome the evidence of increased interactivity, and appreciate that many countries have responded positively to our call for inclusion of civil society in their delegations.

The session’s rich programme was complemented by nearly 200 side events and 400 further parallel events. This was an extraordinary exchange of views and information, and building of solidarity.  In the coming weeks and months all of us must maintain this momentum.

From this point onwards, I look to you all to support a strong a stand-alone goal on gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls.

The post-2015 development agenda has to put gender equality at the core of sustainable development, permeating every sphere of activity. This we must continue to support.

In addition, we must ensure that the Financing for Development Conference is a game-changer for financing gender equality. The ministerial round table and panel discussion on resources underlined the systemic under resourcing and under funding of gender equality work, while Cyclone Pam forcefully underlined the urgency of agreements on disaster risk reduction and on climate change.   We must strengthen the leadership and participation of women in all climate related endeavours, and in the implementation of Security Council resolution 1325 in the spirit and in the letter of the Council’s intentions.

The 167 national reviews must now be the basis for governments to press ahead to close the gaps.

Civil society must take full advantage of our third global Call for Proposals for the Fund for Gender Equality to enable further ground-breaking programmes.

At regional level, as the panel agreed, implementation now needs to build on the strong basis created during the regional reviews. I would like to give a special word of thanks for these reviews to the colleagues from the UN system, and especially the five regional commissions.

Excellencies,

Change is coming. Change has to come.

We have to focus on dismantling patriarchy, not just reforming it, or trying to find a way for women to thrive within it.

The discussions of these last two weeks have made it crystal clear that the gaps and the issues are both structural and psychological.  There can be no real progress in changing the world for women unless we change both. We have to change all of society: men, women, rural or urban communities, traditional communities, young people and children.

When we change the laws and the customary practices, as well as the attitudes and beliefs that shape behaviours, we will have a world in which to thrive. Our hard work will pay off.

The countdown to 2030 begins now.

Let us go now and run the last mile.

Let us aim to end gender inequality before 2030.

This is a necessity for the sustainable development goals to succeed.

Thank you.

Learn more on www.unwomen.org

Lena Dunham Opens Up on the Top 10 Women Who Changed Her Life

Lena Dunham_GC4W

A Makers.com Recap of the Top 10 Women Who Changed Lena Dunham‘s Life. Lena Dunham is the creator of HBO’s Girls and author of Not That Kind of Girl. 

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1. SHERYL SANDBERG
COO of Facebook
“With Lean In, Sheryl gave women a constructive guide for pushing feminism into the work space. She also has the glossiest hair; she’s like the Connie Britton of the tech world.”

2. AUDRE LORDE, Poet and Activist
“Audre fought for equality from the sixties until her death, in 1992. Her quotes have the power to pull me up out of bed.”

3. SHIRLEY KURATA
Stylist
“It took me a long time to find the people in Hollywood who understand me. Shirley and I share a sense that clothes are about more than looking sexy: They’re about humor and cultural commentary, and color, color, color.”

4. JENNI KONNERCo-executive producer of Girls
“Jenni and I started a production company founded on our belief that there aren’t enough projects reexamining gender in interesting ways. It seem s like she’s been my best friend since kindergarten. If she doesn’t text me for an hour, I think she’s dead.”

5. CECE McDONALD, Transgender activist
“When CeCe was violently attacked for being trans, she fought back, but then she was put in prison for 19 months. CeCe turned that injustice into advocacy for thetranscommunity. Watch her on YouTube—such poise and comic timing.”

6. MEGAN ELLISON, Film producer
“Megan produces daring stories that don’t feature superheroes or dumb girlfriends. Having a dear friend who is my age, female, and owns Hollywood like she’s Don Corleone has been more life-affirming than I can say.”

7. ASHLEY FORD, Writer
“Ashley and I fell in love via social media, and then she flew from Indiana to meet me. We were both convinced we were being catfished. Now Ashley writes for BuzzFeed, and everyone can read her pieces about gender, race, and Kenny Loggins.”

8. RHEANNE WHITE, Hairstylist
“Rheanne is a close friend, an amazing mother, and treats hair like it should be treated: as self-expression and fun.”

9. SHONDA RHIMES, Producer of Scandal and Grey’s Anatomy
“Shonda has taken over a full freaking day of the week with her addictive programming. She’s done it unapologetically. And Scandal has made wine and popcorn seem like a viable, even healthful, meal.”

LenaDunham_AF_GC4W

10. AUDREY GELMAN, JOANA AVILLEZ & ISABEL HALLEY
Political strategist, illustrator, and artist, respectively
“My three oldest friends: Audrey, who makes the workings of city government appear sexy; Joana, whose work is both whimsical and hip; and Isabel, whose ceramics are the perfect accents for a table. I’m counting them as one dame because together we are a unit.”

Photo credit: Lena Dunham poses for a portrait at Sundance for her upcoming documentary, It’s Me, Hilary: The Man Who Drew Eloise

Watch Pope Francis talk about Education & Technology with Children with Disabilities and Special Needs

pope-francis-vatican-GC4W Global Educational Fund for Disabled Girls

 DONATE NOW TO PROVIDE ACCESS TO EDUCATION FOR GIRLS WITH DISABILITIES.

GC4W_Education Fund for Disabled Girls_ Pope Francis

On Thursday 2/5 at 4pm (CET), Pope Francis spoke to an international group children with disabilities and special needs in a live conversation from the Vatican. Participants were invited to participate through google+ hangout. The conversation was made possible through the technology on Scholas G+ page.

Please show your support and bring about real change in the lives of girls with disabilities by making a charitable contribution today to the GC4W Global Educational Fund for Disabled Girls.

Streamed live on Feb 5, 2015:

The Complete Transcript of the discussion with Pope Francis:
0:02 IN THE FIRST CHAT WE HAD POPE FRANCIS TALKED ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF BUILDING BRIDGES.
0:10 TODAY WE WANT TO TALK WITH KIDS AROUND THE WORLD WHERE EVERY DAY THEY DO JUST THAT, THEY HELP
0:19 THROUGH TECHNOLOGY, HELP THEM LEARN TO STUDY, TO PLAY, TO SHARE.
0:26 SO LET’S START THIS EXPERIENCE BY CONTACTING SPAIN WHERE ISABEL IS WAITING.
0:35 HI, ISABEL, HOW ARE YOU?
0:36 WHAT WOULD YOU TELL POPE FRANCIS?
0:38>> HELLO, MY NAME IS ISABEL, I AM 13, AND I STUDY AT THE SCHOOL.
0:47 I USE TECHNOLOGY, AND SPECIAL IN CLASSES WITH A COMPUTER WHO HAS
0:51 A SCREEN READER, AND WE ALSO USE THIS INSTRUMENT WHICH IS A
0:56 BRAILLE READER WHERE EVERYTHING THAT APPEARS ON THE SCREEN
0:59 APPEARS HERE AS BRAILLE.
1:03 >> GOOD AFTERNOON, ISABEL, HOW ARE YOU?
1:08 WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO TELL ME?
1:16 >> HOW I USE TECHNOLOGY. WHAT I DO.
1:22 I USE MY COMPUTER WITH A SCREEN READER.
1:25 I USE BRAILLE LINE, WHAT APPEARS ON THE SCREEN APPEARS HERE, AS YOU SEE IN BRAILLE.
1:33 >> WHEN DID YOU START USING THIS COMPUTER?
1:40 >> THE COMPUTER, I STARTED ABOUT 4th OR 5th GRADE IN PRIMARY SCHOOL.
1:47 >> SO YOU’VE BEEN DOING THIS ABOUT FOUR OR FIVE YEARS?
1:50 >> YES, MORE OR LESS.
1:53 >> AND YOU LIKE THIS?
1:55 >> YES. TO BE HONEST, YES, I LIKE IT.
1:59 IT’S ANOTHER HELP AND IT’S VERY PRACTICAL.
2:05 >> I WAS TOLD THAT YOU LIKE TO RUN, THAT YOU’RE AN ATHLETE.
2:09 >> OH, YES, I LOVE SPORTS.
2:11 >> TELL ME WHAT YOU DO.
2:13 >> WELL, I PRACTICE SPORTS TWICE A WEEK IN THE SCHOOL, AND THEN ONCE A WEEK ON MY OWN.
2:26 >> WOULD YOU LIKE TO GIVE ME A MESSAGE THAT I CAN TRANSMIT?
2:42 >> THAT PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES DON’T GIVE UP.
2:46 WITH EFFORT YOU CAN DO WHATEVER YOU DO AND REACH WHATEVER GOAL YOU WANT TO REACH.
2:51 >> WELL, I ASK YOU AND NOW YOU ANSWER ME.
2:56 BUT I ASK BY THE NAME OF 260 PEOPLE WHO ARE NOW LOOKING AT
3:03 YOU, WOULD YOU LIKE TO TELL SOMETHING TO THESE PEOPLE WHO
3:06 ARE — WHO ALSO WANT TO BUILD BRIDGES AND TO ACHIEVE THAT KIDS
3:12 FROM ALL OVER THE WORLD CONNECT THEMSELVES TO DIFFERENT SCHOOLS,
3:15 WHAT WOULD YOU TELL ALL OF THESE PEOPLE?
3:18 >> WELL, THE TRUTH IS A WONDERFUL INITIATIVE AND THAT I HOPE IT WORKS WELL.
3:32 >> WELL, YES. WE WISH YOU THE VERY BEST.
3:42 >> THANK YOU.
3:44 >> KEEP ON RUNNING. KEEP ON WORKING WITH YOUR COMPUTER.
3:48 MAY GOD BLESS YOU. THANK YOU. BYE.
3:54 [ APPLAUSE ]
3:55 >> DO YOU HEAR THE CLAPPING FOR YOU?
4:05 THANK YOU, ISABEL. ISABEL IS A FUTURE WRITER.
4:11 WE GO NEXT TO PEDRO WHO IS IN SAU PAULO.
4:21 HELLO, PEDRO.
4:24 >> HI, POPE. I AM VERY HAPPY TO MEET YOU.
4:28 I AM PEDRO GARCIA. I AM 12 YEARS OLD, AND I STUDY AT SCHOOL.
4:35 I HOPE THAT THIS TECHNOLOGY HELPS ME TO RIDE MY BIKE THROUGH
4:39 THE PROCESSES NOW BEING ASSEMBLED.
4:43 I LIKE VIDEO GAMES.
4:45 PLAY VIDEO GAMES ONLINE AND THAT IS WHAT I LIKE THE MOST.
4:48 I USE THE MOUSE WITH THE LEFT HAND AND THE KEYBOARD WITH MY RIGHT STUMP.
4:53 MY FAVORITE SPORT IS SOCCER.
4:55 >> DO YOU LIKE SOCCER?
5:00 WHAT KIND OF POSITION DO YOU PLAY IN FOOTBALL?
5:03 WHAT NUMBER ARE YOU IN THE TEAM?
5:05 >> I LIKE TO PLAY AT THE GOAL, THE GOAL KEEPER.
5:18 >> AND YOU LIKE TO STOP THE GOALS, BUT WHEN THEY GET ONE
5:21 THROUGH, HOW DO YOU FEEL WHEN THEY GET A GOAL THROUGH.
5:25 >> I’M JUST VERY HAPPY TO BE WITH FRIENDS AND TO PRACTICE MY FAVORITE SPORT.
5:31 >> YOU ARE GIVING US A LESSON, YOU’RE TEACHING US.
5:38 WHAT MATTERS IS NOT TO WIN.
5:41 IMPORTANT THING IS TO PLAY AND TO BE WITH FRIENDS.
5:46 >> THANK YOU, PEDRO.
5:53 LET’S GO BACK TO SPAIN WHERE WE SEE ALICIA WHO WANTS TO TELL US SOMETHING.
5:59 WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO TELL POPE FRANCIS?
6:01 TELL US.
6:02 >> WELL, THE FIRST THING, POPE FRANCIS, MY NAME IS ALICIA, I’M 16.
6:10 I STUDY AT THE GIL GAYARRE FOUNDATION.
6:15 I WOULD LIKE TO SHOW YOU THE CAMERA THAT I DO WITH MY FILM GROUP.
6:20 WE DO A LOT OF THINGS.
6:22TAKE, ESPECIALLY WITH THE TRIPOD THAT WE USE.
6:37I WOULD LIKE TO TELL YOU I LIKE TO USE THE CLIPBOARD, LIVE SOUND
6:41AND ESPECIALLY WORK AS A TEAM.
6:43AND I LIKE TO SEE THE RESULTS OF THE RECORDING WE DO,
6:52THAT’S A LOT OF FUN, I’M SERIOUS.
6:54 >> AND DO YOU LIKE IT A LOT.
6:55 >> YES, I LIKE IT A LOT. SOMETIMES IT’S TIRING.
6:59 >> AND WHEN YOU’RE TIRED, WHAT DO YOU DO?
7:01 >> WELL, I CALM MYSELF DOWN, AND I THINK OF SOMETHING AND I ACT ON IT.
7:14 >> I LIKE THAT, THAT’S GOOD ADVICE.
7:16 BEFORE YOU ACT, THINK. VERY GOOD ADVICE.
7:20 THANK YOU.
7:20 THANK YOU AGAIN. MAY GOD BLESS YOU.
7:23 >> I’M SORRY, POPE FRANCIS, I WOULD LIKE TO ASK A QUESTION, PLEASE.
7:27 DO YOU LIKE TO TAKE PICTURES AND THEN UPLOAD THEM, DOWNLOAD THEM ON THE COMPUTER?
7:34 >> DO YOU WANT ME TO TELL YOU THE TRUTH?
7:36 I AM OLD FASHIONED WHEN IT COMES TO COMPUTERS.
7:41 I’M A DINOSAUR.
7:43 I DON’T KNOW HOW TO WORK A COMPUTER.
7:47 WHAT A PITY, HUH? WHAT A SHAME.
7:52 THANK YOU ALICIA. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.
7:56 THANK YOU AGAIN.
7:57 LET’S GO NOW — THEY’RE CLAPPING FOR YOU.
8:06 THAT’S FOR YOU.
8:07 AND NOW WE GO TO ELVIRA.
8:10 HI, ELVIRA, POPE FRANCIS IS HERE.
8:13 WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO TELL HIM?
8:15 >> HELLO, POPE FRANCIS. I’M 12 YEARS OLD, I’M ELVIRA.
8:22 >> TELL ME SOMETHING.
8:23 >> I STUDY IN THE GIL GAYARRE
8:32 FOUNDATION, I ALSO ENJOY MYSELF
8:34 MAKING VIDEOS JUST LIKE ALICIA.
8:39 >> AND ARE YOU HAPPY WITH THAT?
8:40 >> YES, I LIKE TO SING. I LOVE IT.
8:49 >> OH, YOU LIKE TO SING?
8:52 YES, THAT’S VERY NICE, VERY NICE.
8:55 I HAVE TO SAY GOOD-BYE NOW.
9:04 WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE SONG? VERY, VERY NICE.
9:13 WELL, I HOPE YOU CONTINUE SINGING WELL.
9:16 OKAY. ELVIRA, THANK YOU SO MUCH. YOU WERE WONDERFUL.
9:22 AND YOU WERE ABLE TO TELL WHAT YOUR FAVORITE SONG IS, AND NOW WAITING FOR US.
9:28 >> IN NEBRASKA, HOW ARE YOU
9:37 DOING TODAY, WHAT DO YOU WANT TO
9:40 SHARE WITH POPE FRANCIS.
9:43 >> I’M TAYNOR FRANCIS.
9:51 I’M A JUNIOR AT KEARNEY HIGH SCHOOL.
9:59 I HAVE OVERCOME SEVERAL OBSTACLES IN MY MIDDLE SCHOOL AND HIGH SCHOOL CAREER.
10:04 ONE OF MY MAIN STRUGGLES INVOLVES BEING ABLE TO SHARE MY
10:07 THOUGHTS IN A WAY SO THAT I CAN KEEP UP AND NOT FALL BEHIND WITH THE HIGH SCHOOL CURRICULUM.
10:16 I HAVE A LACK OF FINE MOTOR SKILLS THAT AFFECTS THE SPEED THAT I CAN WRITE OR TYPE.
10:21 THE USE OF TECHNOLOGY HAS HELPED ME OVERCOME THE PROBLEM OF
10:24 GETTING MY THOUGHTS OUT FAST ENOUGH AND KEEPING UP WITH CLASSES.
10:29 I HAVE A QUESTION FOR YOU: WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU FACE SOMETHING DIFFICULT?
10:35 >> FIRST OF ALL, NOT GET UPSET. THERE’S NO NEED TO GET UPSET.
10:48 REMAIN CALM. AFTERWARDS, FIND A WAY TO
10:57 OVERCOME IT, OF GETTING OVER IT.
11:00 AND IF I CAN’T OVERCOME IT, THEN I HAVE TO RESIST IT.
11:07 UNTIL THE POSSIBILITY COMES UP THAT I CAN OVERCOME IT.
11:16 THERE’S NO NEED TO BE AFRAID WITH DIFFICULTIES.
11:23 DON’T BE AFRAID EVER.
11:25 WE ARE CAPABLE OF OVERCOMING EVERYTHING.
11:29 ALL WE NEED IS TIME TO UNDERSTAND THEM, INTELLIGENCE TO
11:35 FIND A WAY AND COURAGE TO CONTINUE FORWARD, BUT NEVER BE AFRAID.
11:43 >> THANK YOU SO MUCH, POPE FRANCIS.
11:48 THANK YOU, ISAIAH AND TAYNOR, YOU DID A GREAT JOB.
11:54 NOW WE’RE GOING TO GO TO INDIA WHERE MANOJ IS WAITING FOR US.
12:03 POPE FRANCIS WANTS TO SHARE WITH YOU AN EXPERIENCE.
12:06 HOW ARE YOU DOING?
12:08 >> GOOD EVENING. HONORED AND EXCITED TO MEET YOU.
12:24 MY NAME IS MANOJ KUMAR AND I AM A HEARING IMPAIRED STUDENT
12:31 STUDYING IN 6th GRADE AT ASHRAY AKRUTI HIGH SCHOOL,
12:39 HYDERABAD, INDIA.
12:41 I AM 13 YEARS OLD.
12:43 AT SCHOOL THEY TEACH US KARATE, YOGA, AND COMPUTERS.
12:48 I NEVER KNEW WHAT WAS COMPUTERS UNTIL THREE YEARS AGO.
12:58 I LIKE IT VERY MUCH.
13:04 NOW WHEN I DO NOT UNDERSTAND ANYTHING WITH MY SUBJECT, I GO
13:11 TO THE INTERNET AND SEARCH PICTURES.
13:14 THEN I KNOW.
13:16 IT IS LIKE HAVING ANOTHER TEACHER.
13:22 I’M A BIG FAN OF BRUCE LEE. I SAW HIS VIDEOS ON YouTube.
13:32 GOOD WAY TO LEARN!
13:36 I HAVE A QUESTION FOR YOU.
13:41 HOW DO YOU THINK SCHOLAS CAN HELP US?
13:45 >> FIRST OF ALL, THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING YOU SAID.
13:55 NOW TO YOUR QUESTION.
14:02 HOW DO I BELIEVE SCHOLAS CAN HELP YOU?
14:05 BUILDING BRIDGES, COMMUNICATING WITH YOU, WITH YOU ALL, BECAUSE
14:12 WHEN YOU ALL COMMUNICATE, THE BEST OF WHAT YOU HAVE INSIDE,
14:20 AND YOU RECEIVE THE BEST FROM OTHERS AND THAT IS VERY IMPORTANT.
14:23 WHEN WE DON’T COMMUNICATE, WE STAY ALONE WITH OUR LIMITATIONS
14:29 AND THAT IS BAD FOR US.
14:33 WHEN WE COMMUNICATE, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING IS
14:36 COMMUNICATION, GIVE AND RECEIVE, AND THAT DOES US WELL AND WE’RE NEVER ALONE.
14:44  SCHOLAS CAN HELP YOU WITH THIS IN COMMUNICATION.
14:48 >> THANK YOU, MANOJ. YOU DID A GREAT JOB.
14:5 1 THANK YOU SO MUCH.
14:53 AND NOW WE’RE GOING TO RECEIVE BAUTI IN SPAIN.
14:59 HELLO, BAUTI, HOW ARE YOU?
15:02 >> I’M OKAY.
15:03 HELLO, FRANCISCO. I’M BAUTISTA, THEY CALL MY BAUTI.
15:10 I’M 14, I AM FROM BUENOS ARES.
15:14 I GO TO SCHOOL IN MADRID,
15:16 I’M GOING TO TELL YOU HOW I USE MY COMPUTER AND TABLET.
15:19 IN MY COMPUTER I STUDY MATH AND LINGUISTICS.
15:23 WE DO NATURAL SCIENCE VIDEOS.
15:25 I LIKE TO USE THE TABLET FOR PHOTOS AND COLLAGES, LATER I CAN
15:30 SHOW MY FRIENDS WHAT I’VE DONE.
15:32 I LIKE A LOT OF GAMES THAT INVOLVE CONSTRUCTION OF BRIDGES
15:38 AND HIGHWAYS, AND THAT WAY I HAVE A LOT OF FUN.
15:42 I ALSO DRAW.
15:46 I AM VERY HAPPY AND EXCITED TO TALK TO YOU TODAY.
15:49 AND HERE IS MY HEART.
15:53 I WOULD LIKE TO VISIT YOU IN ROME ONE DAY.
15:57 THANK YOU.
16:00 >> THANK YOU. THANK YOU, THANK YOU.
16:04 >> YOU’RE WELCOME.
16:06 >> SO YOU LIKE THE TABLET? IS IT DIFFICULT?
16:12 DO YOU HAVE A TABLET?
16:14 >> NO, I DON’T HAVE ONE.
16:17 >> CAN YOU MANAGE IT WELL?
16:24 >> YES.
16:25 >> GOOD. I CONGRATULATE YOU.
16:30 THANK YOU.
16:32 [ APPLAUSE ]
16:33 BAUTI, THANK YOU A LOT. BEAUTIFUL IT WAS.
16:44 I CONGRATULATE YOU.
16:46 AND NOW YOU, POPE FRANCIS, CAN YOU GIVE US A MESSAGE FOR THE KIDS?
16:52>> ALL OF YOU — ALL OF YOU HAVE A BOX, LIKE A TREASURE CHEST
17:08 WITH A TREASURE INSIDE.
17:14 AND THE WORD FOR YOU IS TO OPEN UP THE CHEST, TAKE OUT THE
17:18 TREASURE, MAKE IT GROW AND GIVE IT TO OTHERS AND RECEIVE FROM
17:24 OTHERS THE TREASURES THAT OTHER PEOPLE HAVE.
17:27 EACH ONE OF US HAS A TREASURE INSIDE.
17:31 IF WE KEEP IT INSIDE, IT JUST STAYS THERE INSIDE.
17:37 WE SHARE IT WITH OTHERS, THE TREASURE MULTIPLIES ITSELF, FOR
17:47 THE TREASURES THAT COME FROM OTHERS.
17:50 WHAT I WANT TO SAY IS DON’T HIDE THE TREASURE THAT ALL OF YOU HAVE.
17:58 SOMETIMES YOU FIND IT RIGHT AWAY.
18:01 SOMETIMES YOU HAVE LIKE A GAME AND FIND THE TREASURE.
18:06 SOMETIMES IT’S NOT EASILY FOUND, BUT ONCE IT’S FOUND, SHARE IT.
18:11 BECAUSE BY SHARING, YOU RECEIVE FROM OTHERS AND IT MULTIPLIES.
18:15 THAT’S WHAT I WANTED TO SAY TODAY, KIDS.
18:21 WHAT YOU DO FROM THE PLACE WHERE YOU ARE HELPS ALL OF US.
18:30 HELPS US TO UNDERSTAND THAT LIFE IS A BEAUTIFUL TREASURE.
18:36 IT ONLY MAKES SENSE IF WE GIVE IT.
18:39 THANK YOU AGAIN.
18:41 [ APPLAUSE ]
18:49 THANK YOU, POPE FRANCIS, FOR YOUR WORDS.
18:52  THANK YOU TO ALL THE KIDS, ALL THE BOYS AND GIRLS WHO SHARED
18:59  TODAY, WHO SHARED A LITTLE PIECE OF THEIR LIVES TO THEM AND LET
19:02 US OPEN UP OUR TREASURE CHEST AND HELP ADULTS TOO.
19:06 THANKS TO ALL WHO ARE SEEING US, WHO ARE SEEING VIDEO CHAT.
19:11 THANK YOU, ISABEL, THANK YOU, BAUTI.
19:14 THANK YOU, ELVIRA, THANK YOU ALL OF YOU.
19:16 THANK YOU.
19:20 NOW WE’RE GOING TO SAY HELLO LIKE THIS, SHAKE YOUR HANDS FOR PEACE.
19:25 YOUR HANDS FOR PEACE.
19:27 [APPLAUSE]
19:28 NEXT, POPE FRANCIS TOGETHER WITH THE WORLD DIRECTORS OF
19:44 SCHOLARS WILL COMMUNICATE WITH MOZAMBIQUE WHERE THERE IS AN
20:01 INSTITUTION FOR SCHOLARS, THE CONNECTION NOW WITH MOZAMBIQUE
20:10 WITH THE SCHOLAS OFFICIALS.

Learn more about the #Letgirlslearn initiative of President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama.

#GC4WSMW: GC4W 2015 Social Media Week New York Event {Final Recap}

GC4W SMW 2015

The Global Connections for Women Foundation (GC4W) hosts a Social Media Week NYC  event for the second year “Mobilizing for Social Impact: A GC4W Socializing Leadership in Millennials & Gen Y Panel.”  This sold out event took place at the NYU-SPS campus on Thursday, February 26th at 6pm on NYU Campus. 

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Guest Speakers: 

Video and Transcript: Former President Dr. Joyce Banda Keynote address at the 2015 GC4W Awards at the Library of Congress

Lilian-Ajayi-and Honoree Former-President-Dr-Joyce-Banda

Video: Former President, Dr. Joyce Banda Keynote address at the 2015 GC4W International Women’s Awards & Gala Benefit at Library of Congress, Washington, DC. (Complete Transcript)

Here is the transcript of the Former President of Malawi, Dr. Joyce Banda presented by the Global Connections for Women Foundation (GC4W).

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Former President of Malawi, Dr. Joyce Banda Keynote Address:

Your Excellency, the ambassador of Nigeria to the US, retired Chief Justice Richard Banda, my dear daughter and sister Lilian, fellow honorees, distinguished ladies and gentlemen.

I have noticed that all those that came to the podium were very, very brief so I’ve left my speech behind and I’ll also try and be as brief as I can. Let me take this opportunity to Thank God for this day.

And to thank you Lilian for your love, it is my pleasure to see here younger women come to the podium and receive awards, because as I’ve always said, as far I’m concerned leadership is about the young, the young leaders of today and not of tomorrow. 

But sometimes in Africa we want to tell our leaders, our young leaders that they should wait, we postpone their participation in decision-making. I want to thank those that decided that I should receive this award and I don’t take it for granted and I received it on behalf of my constituents. My constituency is the rural women and children of Africa.

10 years ago I was invited to come to the World Bank and we were discussing MDG3’s and 5. Particularly MDG3, there was concerned that it wasn’t moving there moving as fast as other MDGs and in my submission that day I said, we shall not be able to achieve MDG3 , particularly where I come from if we don’t take a holistic approach and usually those of us who are leaders in Africa, sometimes feel that nobody’s listening to us, but isn’t it a shame that next week, starting from tomorrow we shall be in New York at the CSW. 

Twenty years after Beijing taking stock, of what we have achieved on the platform of action that we drew in Beijing, but isn’t it a shame that those two that we should not have achieved are the ones that relates to women, MDG 3 and MDG 5.

I have worked in the women’s movement at grassroots, as an activist, as an entrepreneur, and in public life – and I have worked with women at all levels. And, I want to report that where I come from, in Africa, whether women are poor or not educated,

but they definitely know what the need to do to change their situation and I want to assure you distinguished ladies and gentlemen that my fellow African women at grassroots, they are not just sitting there waiting for handouts they know what they should do change their situation.

And so as an advocate for their voice what I’ve always asked the world to do, our sisters and brothers here, is to come into African and forge partnerships with us. It saddens me sometimes when people come and believe that they can do it for us, but I also respect those that come and forge smart partnerships with us and work with us, because we know exactly what to do.

Lilian is here and all those honorees that you saw know what they should do to change the situation of women in Africa and I hope that you can find it in your heart to partner with us and work with us to make that happen.

So what do I mean by a holistic approach? I truly believe that the situations of women in Africa can only change – if women are economically empowered. My mission in life is to assist women and youth in social and political empowerment through business and education — and I believe that this situation of women in Africa will change when that household has money.

When women are given the opportunity to do business, when the women can participate in contributing financially to the household, because when money gets into the house at grassroots – the girls are going to school, because when resources are low, the boys are going, the girls are not going

– and I have found that girls that have gone to school will also send their children to school and the three areas that I have advocated for throughout my adult life have originated from personal experience in my life.

So when I was growing up, going back to stay with my grandmother every weekend I had a very good friend in the village who was just as bright as I was going to the village school, we went all the way to primary school, we were selected to the best secondary schools, I went, the next time I came back from the holidays, she wasn’t on the roadside to meet me and

I was told that she had dropped out because her family couldn’t raise the six dollars she needed to go to school and I remembered at that point saying when I grow up I will send as many girls as possible to school.

My friend Christine, as I speak she is where I left her – and I went all the way to State House and I think that’s not fair and I think the education for girl child is a human right

#2, #3, #1 is income so that the girls can go to school, my pillar #3 is maternal health and HIV AIDS, because research has shown that when the girls don’t go to school their community is encouraging them to get married very early and when they get married early are dying while giving birth. My research shows that those who are dying while giving birth, maternal morality, are between the ages of fifteen and nineteen. So, keeping the girl child in school for more years is also saving her life.

My pillar #4 is leadership and I’m a living example of what can happen when you get into leadership and I have also seen what happened in Malawi when I was brought into state house,

I promoted as many women as possible, in fact the Chief Justice of Malawi, who was a woman I was told retired this week. The solicitor general is a woman and the two inspector deputy governors of the reserve bank are women, eight district commissioners and the list goes on — why because I believe that when women get into leadership on all levels focus more on issues on women and children.

My pillar #5 is that of rights and it is a cross cutting pillar into the four pillars and I believe that women must have the right to have access to income and control their income – and I believe that our girl child has the right to stay in school and I believe that the girl child or the young lady must have the right to get married when she wants to and to have children at an age that is safe for her.

Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, this model is what I have tried, the Joyce Banda Foundation was established sixteen years ago when I received the Africa prize in New York and the prize money was fifty thousand dollars and I took the 50,000 back home and started the foundation, because I believe it didn’t belong to me, but to the women that supported me. And as I speak the Joyce Banda Foundation has reached 1.3 Million Malawians. (Applause)

When I got into public office, I took advantage of the opportunity, as Minister of Gender I Championed the passing of the domestic violence bill. This past week, Malawi takes pride that it passed a law against marriage before the age of 18.

My experience has shown that passing laws is one thing, but making sure that they are implemented is another. You can tell a girl child not to get married before 18, but she must have the means to go to school in order to stay away from marriage.

So distinguished ladies and gentlemen I have been Minister of gender, I have been Foreign Minister, I have been the Vice President and I’ve been the President of a countrybut all these are nothing if we leave the thousands of women behind, because where I come from the face of poverty is women and therefore it is my pleasure that younger women like Lilian are coming up and taking over from us.

I established the Joyce Banda Foundation that runs schools and we are celebrating 10 years, because it is now sixteen-years-old celebrating 10 years, there was a creep where there was this young missed Joyce Banda dressed as I am here, this eight year old girl child was going to a press conference and the other students were the journalists and reporters. And so one of them asked this younger Mrs. Joyce Banda and said “Mrs Joyce Banda you have achieved so much in your life, now you are Foreign Minister, what are your future plans?”

And this young girls said “Oh my god, I wish I could now establish a university, I have established schools and I have established women’s groups and the Joyce Banda Foundation has 550,000 rural market women, but I wish I could establish a university, but as you can see I’m running out of time.”

And I listened to this girl and everybody laughed and I felt sorry for myself and so indeed allow me to end on that note. I am running out of time, but there’s still a lot of work to be done and in Africa and everywhere else, women are in majority, I have had the privilege of getting a lot of support from men, even more than from my fellow women.

And, so what has been the missing link, since Beijing, in 20 years, we have left out our brothers who should have assisted us to achieve more.

And I would like to say that as far as possible in this discussion, on this day, we must ensure that our men are sitting there and helping us achieve our platform for action, we have been talking to ourselves for too long, in any case our men realize that we are in the majority, but our men also appreciate that we brought into this world the other half. 

Thank you very much Distinguish Ladies and Gentlemen.

The End.

Interested in supporting the “GC4W Global Educational Fund for Disabled Girls” to further ensure that girls with disabilities are afforded the opportunity to get an education. Please pledge your support now {http://gfwd.at/1G0RWT7} or email us at info@gc4women.org to learn more.

#LetGirlsLearn: President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama Launch the “Let Girls Learn” Initiative

Let Girls Learn_White House Education Project_GC4W Recap

President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama champions a Government-Wide Approach To Empower Girls through Education worldwide.

Let Girls Learn_White House Education Project_GC4W Recap

“To educate a girl is to build a healthier family, a stronger community, and a brighter future. Unfortunately today, 62 million girls around the world are not in school. Half of them are adolescents.”

Because investing in the education of a girl will greatly impact her ability to up lift her family, contribute to her community and improve her life. This is precisely why President Barack Obama and First Lady, Michelle Obama has taken a strong position in championing the global efforts to help adolescent girls around the globe attend and finish their school through the Let Girls Learn initiative, “which will build upon the public engagement campaign by the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) that launched last summer.”

This government-wide effort, Let Girls Learn, will leverage existing international investments and efforts to ensure the global primary education of adolescent girls to complete their education. The largest part of the Let Girls Learn initiative is meant to encourage and support community-led solutions to further reduce the barriers that prevents girls from completing their education.

One such instance is adolescent girls with disabilities – the Global Connections for Women Foundation launched the Global Educational Fund for Disabled Girls – to ensure the success of the disabled girls in the City of Karamajiji, Nigeria.” “With the GC4W Karamajiji new school development project, we hope to raise $100,000 to be used for building new classrooms, providing a school bus, securing school supplies, uniforms, tables and chairs, as well as clean water supply – to further ensure the success of these girls.” – said Lilian O. Ajayi, Founder and Executive Director of Global Connections for Women Foundation. 

“If we’re going to transform girls’ lives around the world, we need everyone—governments, organizations, community leaders, and individuals—to join us.”

The Global Connections for Women Foundation urge our supporters and readers to join President Barack Obama, the First Lady Michelle Obama, community leaders and organizations – who are at the forefront of ensuring that adolescent girls have access to education and are better able to complete their primary education.

Ongoing efforts for Let Girls Learn will focus on:

  • Empowering the Next Generation of Girls Education Leaders & Building Capacity
  • Engaging and Mobilizing the U.S. Public

Video: GC4W New School Development Fund for Disabled Girls

GC4W New School Fund - Diasbled Girls

Pledge your support for the GC4W New School Development Project Fund for Disabled Girl in Karamajiji, Abuja.

This crowd funding initiative will run for approximately 90 days with the donation period scheduled to close on June 13, 2015. Please make a tax-exempt contribution today and Share with your networks to help us meet this goal – together we can ensure that these girls are better able to live their best life stories.

Lilian Ajayi GC4W Global Education Fund_Give Forward Campaign

For more information or if you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact us at champions@gc4women.org and press@gc4women.org for Media relations.

GC4W New School Development Project for Disabled Girls in Karamajiji, Abuja Nigeria

Lilian Ajayi GC4W Global Education Fund_Give Forward Campaign

Pledge your support for the GC4W New School Development Project Fund.

As the inaugural program of the Global Educational Fund for Disable Girls (under the GC4W Community Development and Empowerment Program), the first initiative is designed to support the Karamajiji New School Development Project for disabled girls in Karamajiji, Abuja.

We launched a new crowd funding campaign on “Give Forward” to benefit the GC4W Karamajiji New School Development Project in Nigeria – as a continuation of our fundraising efforts that started at the recent GC4W International Women’s Day Awards & Benefit Gala held at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC on March 7th, 2015.

In recent days, President Barack Obama and First Lady, Michelle Obama has taken a strong position in championing the global efforts to help adolescent girls around the globe – attend and complete their school through the Let Girls Learn initiative.

Let Girls Learn_White House Education Project_GC4W Recap

Watch Pope Francis talk about Education & Technology with Children with Disabilities and Special Needs.

pope-francis-vatican-GC4W Global Educational Fund for Disabled Girls

With the Karamajiji development project, we hope to raise funds to be used for building new classrooms, providing a school bus, securing school supplies, uniforms, tables and chairs, as well as clean water supply – to further ensure the success of these girls. As a 501c3 approved non-profit, GC4W encourages and accepts donations and support of any amount as all proceeds will be used for the Karamajiji project and are tax-deductible.  As an added incentive for contributing to this worthwhile cause, donors will be invited to attend and participate in the ground-breaking ceremony in Nigeria.

The Ways You Can Help: 

Step I: Watch a video on why you should support this campaign: 

Step II: Help us achieve our goal – DONATE today on http://gc4women.org/donate/

Step III: Spread the word on your Social Media Networks: “I’m supporting #GC4W New School Development Project Fund for Disabled Girls. Join me by donating to http://gc4women.org/donate and Please RT”

Step IV: Write a story about our fundraiser – email us at press@gc4women.org for comments.

Please make a charitable contribution today and Share with your networks to help us meet this goal – together we can ensure that these girls are better able to live their best life stories.

For more information or if you are interested in becoming a sponsor, please contact us at champions@gc4women.org and press@gc4women.org for Media relations.

 

The 2nd Annual GC4W International Women’s Day Awards Honorees

GC4W 2015 Awards

Leadership in Civic & Political Activism


Joyce Banda

Dr. Joyce Banda
Honorary Global Women Champion
(Keynote Speaker)
Former President of Malawi, Former Vice
President of Malawi, Former Minister of
Foreign Affairs & Founder of Joyce Banda
Foundation

Congresswoman Barbara Lee

Congresswoman Barbara Lee
Distinguished Global Women Champion
U.S. House of Representative from California’s
13th district, U.S. House of Representative from
California’s 9th district, & Member of the California
State Assembly for 16th & 13th district

Chief (Mrs.) Nkechi Okemini
Distinguished Global Women Champion
President of the National Council of
Women Societies (NCWS)

Leadership in Business & Entrepreneurship

Wendy Diamond

Wendy Diamond
Distinguished Global Women Champion
And Women of the Year
Founder/CEO of Women’s Entrepreneurship
Day, Founder/CEO and CPO of Animal Fair
Media

Melinda Emerson

Melinda Emerson
Distinguished Global Women Champion
Founder of SmallBizLady, CEO of Quintessence
Multimedia, NSA Member, Author of Become Your
Own Boss in 12 Months.

Azita Ardakani

Azita Ardakani
Distinguished Global Women Champion
Founder of LoveSocial,
Listed in Forbes 30 Under 30

Lilach Bullock

Lilach Bullock
Global Women Champion
Co-Founder & Director at Communications Axis,
Writer for Maximize Social Business

S. Lynn Cooper

S. Lynn Cooper
Global Women Champion
Founder and Chief Social Officer of Socially
Ahead & Technology Contributor to Black
Enterprise

Yinka Fayomi

Yinka Fayomi
Global Women Champion
Chairman/Founder of Foreign Investment
Network, Economist, Publisher of FIN
Magazine, & Board Member of African Women
University Zimbabwe

Leadership in Community Development & Advocacy

Sonia-Alleyne

Sonia Allenye
Distinguished Global Women Champion
Editorial Director at Black Enterprise,
Co-editorial Director Women of Power
Summit & Co-author of Good is Not Enough

Anastasia Dellaccio

Anastasia Dellaccio
Global Women Champion
Member of the United Nations Foundation
Global Public Affairs Team & Congressional #GivingTuesday

Emily Bennington

Emily Bennington
Global Women Champion
Founder of AWAKE EXEC® Conscious
Career Design & Former Director of
Marketing and Development at Dixon
Hughes

Tiffany Aliche

Tiffany Aliche
Global Women Champion
Owner of The Budgetnista, Former
Financial Literary Expert for City National
Bank & Former Vice-President for FP
YOUTHOUTCRY

Janell Hazelwood

Janell Hazelwood
Global Women Champion
Associate Managing Editor at Black Enterprise,
Writer and Web Producer for The New York Times
Co., Scripps Howard News Wire, & Black Enterprise
Magazine

EtherEjim

Esther Ejim
Global Women Champion
Founder and Executive Director of Naija
Worldwide Charities, Member of the US
Association of the United Nation

Leadership in Global Health & Humanity

Dr. Yewande Adeshina

Dr. Yewande Adeshina
Distinguished Global Women Champion
Health Advisor in Nigeria, Diasporan, &
Deputy Medical Director of the Reddington
Hospital & Multispecialist Centre

Michelle King Robson

Michelle King Robson
Distinguished Global Women Champion
Founder of EmpowHER & Former President
of MKR Media

Ana Rold

Ana C. Rold
Distinguished Global Women Champion
Founder, Publisher & Editor-in-Chief of the
Diplomatic Courier & Served as the Editor-in-
Chief of annual commemorative publication of G8,
G20, & APEC Summits

Leadership in Community Development & Youth Advocacy

Vivian Onano

Vivian Onano
Global Women Champion
UN Women Youth Advisor
2013 Congressional District Leader for the
ONE Campaign, Freelance Writer for Huffington
Post Blogs Page & Volunteer for Sustainable
Development for All-Kenya

Corporate Contributions and Leadership Award

intel

Intel Corporation
Corporate Award
Intel® Global Girls and Women Initiative
Received by: Suzanne Fallender,
Director, Global Girls & Women Initiative

Simon Venture Group

Simon Venture Group
Corporate Award
Retail Venture Capital, Investing in the
Future Innovation of Retail & Real Estate
Received by: J. Sky Fernandes – SVG
Managing Director

Men of the Year

Adebowale Ibidapo Adefuye

H. E. Ambassador Adebowale Ibidapo Adefuye
Statesmen of The Year
Ambassador from Nigeria to the U.S., High
Commissioner to Jamaica, Former Deputy High
Commissioner at the Nigerian Embassy in London,
& Former Professor at the University of Lagos

Professor Oke

Professor David Oke
Statesmen of The Year
Chief Medical Director at the Lagos State
University Teaching Hospital, Member of the
Association of Physicians of Nigeria, Nigerian
Cardiac Society & the Nigerian Medical Association.

Mr. Olusegun Awolowo

MR. OLUSEGUN AWOLOWO EXECUTIVE
Statesmen of The Year
Director/Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Export Promotion Council (NEPC)

H.R.H. Alhaji Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari
Emir of Ilorin
Statesmen of The Year

GC4W Champion of the Year

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Alvin Grant
GC4W Champion of the Year
Software Engineer for CBS Corporation,
Freelance Web Designer & Developer, Small Business Branding Development

Video: Arise Entertainment 360 with Founder Lilian O. Ajayi of GC4Women.org

GC4W Lilian O Ajayi on Arise Entertainment 360 TV Show

Founder #GC4W  Lilian O. Ajayi speaks on the importance of inspiring women and girls globally on Arise 360 Entertainment TV.

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