Gender-based violence is considered to be a key inhibitor for economic participation and empowerment of girls and women. According to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), almost 50% of all sexual assaults worldwide are committed against girls age 15 and under. Worldwide, one out of three women experience physical and/or psychological abuse in her lifetime. In many countries engaging women in the workforce is a key element for economic growth. Also according to the UNFPA Gender inequality is a key feature of poverty; more than 70% of the world’s poor are female. Women and girls comprise the majority of those living on less than $1 a day. Limitations placed upon girls and young women, limiting them from fulfilling their full potential, play a significant role in perpetuating the world’s poorest economies.
Giving a girl or woman the ability to fully participate in society and the ability to sustain herself means we have to address gender-based violence and provide girls and young women with life skills, opportunities and knowledge around their rights.
Sports has proven to be a key strategy to provide a safe space to discuss experiences, violations and fears, and receive validation that her fears are okay. Furthermore, a girl needs to understand her legal rights. She also needs a place where she can learn confidence that will help her avoid becoming a victim of gender-based violence. Women Win is most effective as a convener, innovator, and pollinator of impactful strategies, resources, and tools. There is a real need at every level for strategies, direct and indirect support, capacity building, and tools to create quality sports programs that empower girls and women in achieving their rights. We inaugurated this strategy by launching the first interactive, online guide: International Guide to Designing Sports Programs for Girls and our CGI commitment will continue to build on its success.
There are incredible challenges facing girls around the world. Sport can be a powerful tool in overcoming those obstacles, enabling girls and women to access resources, education and valuable skills to change their own lives. The need for high quality sport programming as a platform to address critical issues is being realised on a global level, most recently by the
As part of Women Win’s CGI Commitment to Action, Women Win will be launching a wiki-style online guide to addressing one of the largest barriers to global development: gender-based violence. This newly launched web-based tool is live at GirlSportGuides.org/GBV.
About the Clinton Global Initiative
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) convenes global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing challenges. Since 2005, CGI Annual Meetings have brought together nearly 150 current and former heads of state, 18 Nobel Prize laureates, hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations, major philanthropists, directors of the most effective nongovernmental organizations, and prominent members of the media. These CGI members have made more than 2,000 commitments, which have already improved the lives of 300 million people in more than 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued in excess of $63 billion. The 2011 Annual Meeting will take place Sept. 20-22 in New York City.
This year, CGI also convened CGI America, a meeting focused on developing ideas for driving economic growth in the United States. The CGI community also includes CGI U, which hosts an annual meeting for undergraduate and graduate students, and CGI Lead, which engages a select group of young CGI members for leadership development and collective commitment-making. For more information, visit www.clintonglobalinitiative.org.