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Gender Campus: Tools for gender-sensitive planning and implementation

Gender equality and women’s empowerment are central to development and peace. The new aid effectiveness agenda must offer opportunities to strengthen action towards the MDGs and gender equality.

The global development agenda: tools for gender-sensitive planning and implementation

Second Edition - download course information in English 111.77 Kb

Applications are open from 25 - 30 September, 2009

Attendance grants are subject to timely submission of the candidate's application form and its acceptance by the Selection Committee.

Apply now!

More details on this online course:


Gender equality and women’s empowerment are central to development and peace. The new aid effectiveness agenda must offer opportunities to strengthen action towards the MDGs and gender equality.

The overall purpose of this online course is to create greater awareness of these opportunities and initiate further action at the national and the international levels.

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'I'm human, I’m not from Mars'

By Sophia Grootboom and Karabo Keepile (Mail & Guardian)

Many traditional African communities explain the birth of intersexed babies with cultural beliefs such as interventions by ancestors after the parents have broken customs. Sophia Grootboom and Karabo Keepile spoke to two intersexed Africans who have experienced severe discrimination and whose sexes were wrongly identified at birth

In the Heidelberg township community where 35-year-old Linda K lives, everyone -- including Linda K himself -- believes his parents got what they deserved.

He was born with a small vagina and a normal-sized penis and this is ascribed to the fact that his parents shared a surname and came from the same tribe, which is problematic as married couples should have different surnames and come from different tribes.

In Zulu culture, such marriages are forbidden, and “bad things will happen to you if you break the rules,” said Linda. His mother desperately wanted a daughter.

As a result, Linda was raised as Lindiwe, a girl, and had to endure years of mockery at school. “Schoolmates soon realised there was something different about me,” he said. “I was dressed in skirts, but acted like a boy. And I had two clear sets of genitals.”

When Linda joined the boys on the soccer field, they chased him away, shouting: “What are you? A girl? A boy? Or a homosexual?”

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Gay, bisexual teens at risk for eating disorders

Reuters Health

Thursday, September 17, 2009

By Amy Norton

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Gay, lesbian and bisexual teenagers may be at higher risk of binge-eating and purging than their heterosexual peers, starting as early as age 12, a new study finds.

Past research has found connections between sexual orientation and the risk of eating disorders in adults -- showing, for instance, that gay men have higher rates of symptoms than their heterosexual counterparts.

Less has been known about how sexual orientation affects teenagers' risks of various eating disorders.

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UNAIDS Forum on HIV, Human Rights and Men Who Have Sex with Men

As part of his official visit to Washington, D.C., UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé participated in the Forum on HIV, Human Rights and Men Who Have Sex with Men on 16 September 2009.

The event was organized by UNAIDS in collaboration with the HIV Policy Working Group on Men Who Have Sex with Men and Other Sexual Minorities, and in cooperation with the Honorable Howard Berman (D-CA) and the Honorable Barbara Lee (D-CA).

The Forum was held to raise attention to the human rights issues that affect men who have sex with men (MSM) and other sexual minorities, as well as the policy and structural barriers that prevent MSM and other sexual minorities from accessing HIV services, including prevention, treatment, care and support.

“We are here because it remains an undeniable fact in all regions of the world—including here in the US—that men who have sex with men lack universal access to HIV services,” said Michel Sidibé.

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Building Awareness to Reduce Maternal Mortality

By Jessie Boylan

COBUE, Mozambique, Sep 17 (IPS) - In the Niassa province of northwest Mozambique, one doctor has been working with local communities to overcome the delays responsible for three-quarters of maternal deaths each year.

Dr Peg Cumberland, a slim, energetic English woman, has worked in Mozambique for over 13 years. She came to the Niassa region in 2004 when she heard that the community was asking for assistance.

Since then she has trained around 400 local people in remote health care. Of that number, only eight are paid staff. The rest are volunteers.

"For the first two years, I didn’t have a house. I just had my backpack and was travelling on foot through the communities, staying in people's homes and spending a lot of time talking with the traditional leaders.

"I set out to establish what people wanted to see happening and how we could work together, but I made it clear that, one, I cannot provide drugs, that we’d have to get them from the government, and two, that I cannot pay people."

More than half a million women die in pregnancy and childbirth every year around the world, a number which has decreased by less than one percent each year since 1990. About 99 percent of these women live in developing countries, and over half in sub-Saharan Africa.

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UN chief urges action to end violence and abuses endured by women

Only by standing up for fundamental rights everywhere can we expect to achieve lasting change


15 September 2009Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today spotlighted the “shocking” abuse, violence and discrimination suffered by women, in a call for action to empower the gender that make up over half the world’s population.

In describing the diverse world population, “I would have to explain that fully half of those people face shocking abuses and discrimination,” Mr. Ban told the launch at United Nations Headquarters in New York of Half the Sky, a book depicting the violence and other abuses suffered by women worldwide and proposing action to combat the scourge.

“They are forced into slavery and prostitution,” said Mr. Ban at the launch, organized by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Women are denied the right to “speak their views, wear what they want, or pursue an education or a career,” said Mr. Ban, adding that they “are burned to death or scarred with acid with little or no punishment for the perpetrators.”

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U.N. Approves Long-Awaited New Women's Agency

By Thalif Deen


After more than three years of political foot-dragging, the 192-member General Assembly adopted a historic resolution Monday aimed at creating a new U.N. agency for women.

The decision to create a separate powerful body to deal exclusively with gender-related activities comes years - or decades - after the United Nations created specialised agencies to deal with specific issues, including children, population, refugees, food, environment, education, health and tourism, among many others.

Currently, there are four existing women's U.N. entities in the world body: the U.N. Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM); the Office of the Special Adviser on Gender Issues; the U.N. Division for the Advancement of Women; and the International Research and Training Institute for the Advancement of Women (INSTRAW).

But none of them is as politically powerful and financially stable as full-fledged U.N. agencies.

When the new women's agency is created, perhaps by the middle of next year, it will be headed by an under-secretary-general (USG), the third highest ranking position in the U.N. system, after the secretary-general and the deputy secretary-general.

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Complicating the Vote for Women in Sudan

By Ruth Omukhango

JUBA, South Sudan, Sep 12 (IPS) - In April 2010, the people of South Sudan will vote in a milestone general election, and for the first time, South Sudanese women will be able to participate.

Since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in 2005, which ended the 21 years of civil war in the south, elaborate and ambitious plans have been made for elections, which the people will excitedly take part in next year.

Before Sudan went to war in 1983, women were not allowed to vie for political office or to vote. Next April, they will be asked to cast their ballots in a contest in which 25 per cent of seats have been reserved for women.

The excitement is also tempered, however, by concerns over the major obstacles women face in exercising their democratic rights.


Illiteracy presents one of the biggest obstacles to womens' empowerment. Most women in South Sudan have never had any formal education and are unable to read and write.

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We want to save you: (and if you don't appreciate it you will be punished!)

What you don't know about sex work could harm a sexworker...and does. 

A video interview with a Swedish sex worker and activist Pye Jacobsson about the legislation around prostitution and its impact on sex workers’ lives in Sweden.


Hungarian Civil Liberties Union
Interviewer: Peter Sarosi
Filmed and edited by: Istvan Gabor Takacs
Music: Antony Raijekov - When Waves Trying to Catch a Marvel
Filmed in Stockholm, at the Swedish Drug Users Union in January 2009

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What of the female condom?

JOHANNESBURG, 10 September 2009 (PlusNews) -

If you haven't seen a female condom lately, you're not alone. More than 15 years after the only female-controlled method to prevent HIV was introduced, it is still largely marginalized and inaccessible.

IRIN/PlusNews has compiled a list illustrating female condom distribution in Southern African countries.


The government distributed over 370,000 female condoms free of charge in 2008, mainly through its health facilities. The condoms can also be purchased from stores and pharmacies for about US$2.80 each.


The Ministry of Health and Social Welfare distributed about 110,000 female condoms by September 2009.

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