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Asian Geographic - - Feature: Sylvia Kho - Text Jim Neale

End­ing prej­u­dice against women

Th­ese SDGS as they are called, have re­placed the older UN Mil­len­nium Devel­op­ment Goals that ex­pired in 2015. This will give in­sti­tu­tions, hu­man­i­tar­ian agen­cies and nongovern­ment or­gan­i­sa­tions (NGOS) a 15-year hori­zon to at­tempt to end all prej­u­dice and bias against women in so­ci­ety, and re­place it with an ethos of em­pow­er­ment and im­par­tial­ity by 2025. The adop­tion and launch of this am­bi­tious pol­icy has been en­thu­si­as­ti­cally re­ceived in Asia by all the re­gional United Na­tions agen­cies and mul­ti­lat­eral lend­ing in­sti­tu­tions, in­clud­ing the Asian Devel­op­ment Bank (ADB).

Ad­dress­ing sen­si­tive cul­tural is­sues

The ADB has been at the fore­front of women em­pow­er­ment is­sues, de­ploy­ing gen­der and devel­op­ment spe­cial­ists who fo­cus on dis­crim­i­na­tion through­out the Asia Pa­cific re­gion. ADB has taken the ini­tia­tive in its strat­egy and plan­ning to achieve favourable re­sults when ad­dress­ing the ills of re­pro­duc­tive health, nutri­tion, in­fant mor­tal­ity and vi­o­lence against women. Many of th­ese is­sues are highly sen­si­tive, with tra­di­tions and cul­tures be­ing a dif­fi­cult road­block to nav­i­gate when im­ple­ment­ing th­ese lofty aims. But breaking down bar­ri­ers and build­ing bridges of un­der­stand­ing are among the core be­liefs of the Manila-based devel­op­ment bank, which has been op­er­at­ing in com­mu­ni­ties since 1966.

Sev­er­ing the cy­cle of poverty

The United Na­tions World Food Pro­gram ( WFP) is an­other or­gan­i­sa­tion that is try­ing to sever the cy­cle of poverty and hunger at its roots, by creat­ing a safe and sup­port­ing en­vi­ron­ment in which to el­e­vate gen­der equal­ity and to en­sure safe ac­cess to food. It is of­ten ob­served that women are more vul­ner­a­ble than men dur­ing nat­u­ral dis­as­ters and po­lit­i­cal up­heavals. Con­se­quently, WFP’S ac­tion plans specif­i­cally tar­get the in­clu­sive­ness of women at the op­er­a­tional level dur­ing th­ese emer­gen­cies. Sus­tain­able gen­der pro­grams like Food For Train­ing ( FFT), which can ac­tu­ally chart the in­come gen­er­at­ing lev­els of women, will of­ten fol­low post- dis­as­ter

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