Sakhi Influences the Global Movement to End Violence Against Women

Through a panel on the UN’s Commission on the Status of Women’s 55th Annual Summit, Sakhi brings local work to the global stage

On February, 24th 2011 Sakhi moderated a panel discussion on the impact and value of education and economic empowerment programs in the work to prevent and end violence against women around the world.

Through the passionate efforts of Sakhi’s Executive Director, Tiloma Jayasinghe, Sakhi gathered an amazing group of panelists from diverse community agencies that do critical work to enable self-sufficiency, prevent and end violence against women through educational and economic empowerment programs.

Held at the Salvation Army International Social Justice Center, Sakhi’s panel was part of the NGO Parallel Event Series of the 55th Annual United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women Conference. A commission of the United Nation’s Economic and Social Council, the Commission on the Status of Women is a global policy-making body that identifies challenges, sets global standards and formulates concrete policies to promote gender equality and the advancement of women worldwide. This year, the Commission’s theme is “Access and Participation of Women and Girls in Education, Training, Science and Technology, Including for the Promotion of Women’s Equal Access to Full Employment and Decent Work.

“The work we all do every day is directly linked to the global movement to end violence against women,” said Tiloma Jayasinghe, Executive Director of Sakhi. “We serve the same women- marginalized, underserved and facing similar barriers to accessing opportunities as other populations of women around the world.”

Panelists included Zeinab Eyega, a fierce advocate for African immigrant women and Director of Sauti Yetu Center for African Women, Sara Elgobhashy, a passionate counselor and advocate of the Arab American Family Support Center, Nathaly Rubio-Torio, Executive Director of Voces Latinas, Grace Protos, Regional Administrator of the Department of Labor’s Women’s Bureau and Payal Hathi, Sakhi’s tireless Economic Empowerment Coordinator. NGO representatives from women’s organizations from Iran, Japan, India and Nigeria joined the panelists in passionate discussion on including men in the conversation to end violence against women, translating international laws for domestic adoption and making transnational connections to bridge the gap of awareness about women migrating to the United States.  The event created opportunities for organizations from around the world to meet and share best practices.

By organizing such an event, Sakhi has brought international attention to the incredible work of community and grass-roots organizations in New York dedicated to ending violence against women.  By the end of this global summit, the Commission on the Status of Women will gather knowledge, insights and best practices in its Agreed Conclusions and Recommendations which will then be sent to the United Nation’s Economic and Social Council for adoption by member states.