Tag Archives: United

United Nations Foundation Appoints Daniel Carucci as Vice President of Global Health


Washington, D.C. (Vocus) October 15, 2008

The United Nations Foundation (UN Foundation) announced today the appointment of Daniel Carucci as its Vice President of Global Health. In this position, Carucci will direct the strategic development, and implementation of the UN Foundation’s global health work, as well as coordinate with UN agencies, corporate and non-governmental partners, and key donors to improve health worldwide.

“We are pleased to welcome Daniel Carucci to our team at the UN Foundation,” said Senator Timothy E. Wirth, President of the UN Foundation. “His expertise in medicine and tropical disease, as well as his extensive background in the field of global health, make him an exceptional candidate for this role and a good fit for our organization. In this new role, Daniel Carucci will elevate our health program, connecting our health initiatives and strengthening our support of the UN’s work to improve and save lives worldwide.”

Daniel Carucci has over 20 years of experience working in medicine and international health initiatives. Prior to joining the Foundation, Carucci served as the Director of Science at the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health. He also worked as Director of the Grand Challenges in Global Health Initiative at the Foundation for NIH – a $ 200 million program supported by The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in partnership with the Wellcome Trust and Canadian Institute of Health Research. He has served as the Director of the Malaria Vaccine Program at the Naval Medical Research Center in Bethesda, Maryland, and is responsible for the establishment of the Molecular Vaccines Interagency Working Group under the U.S. Subcommittee on Biotechnology. Carucci is also the recipient of the prestigious 2002 American Medical Association Nathan Davis Award for Outstanding Government Service, the 2000 Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Award for Excellence in Military Medicine, and the 1989 Operational Flight Surgeon of the Year (Richard E. Luehrs Memorial Award). Carucci received his Medical Degree from the University of Virginia School of Medicine and earned a Masters of Science in Clinical Tropical Medicine and a Doctor of Philosophy from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.

For 10 years, the UN Foundation has worked hand-in-hand with the World Health Organization, UNICEF and other UN leaders to develop and expand major initiatives to help children survive and thrive. In support of world-renowned international health partnerships, the UN Foundation has mobilized hundreds of millions of dollars and tens of thousands of people, brought new private sector partners into the field, helped strengthen the capacity of UN health agencies and provided program expertise to help save children’s lives. The UN Foundation is proud to be a founding partner of the Measles Initiative; a partner in the Global Polio Eradication Initiative and Roll Back Malaria; and creator of Nothing But Nets, a grassroots campaign supporting the delivery of long-lasting insecticide-treated bed nets to children and families throughout Africa.

About the United Nations Foundation

The UN Foundation is an advocate for the UN and a platform for connecting people, ideas, and capital to help the United Nations solve global problems. We build partnerships, grow constituencies, mobilize resources and advocate policy changes to support the UN’s work for individual and global progress. The UN Foundation’s work – focused on select global problems – is decreasing child mortality, improving disaster relief, protecting diverse cultures and environments, creating a clean energy future, empowering women and girls, and improving U.S.-UN relations. For more information, visit http://www.UNFoundation.org.

Press Contact:

Amy DiElsi

Communications Director, Children’s Health, United Nations Foundation

(o) 202-419-3230, (c) 202-492-3078, (e) adielsi @ unfoundation.org

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The Italian Job: Confused.com Offers Tips to Manchester United Supporters who are Making the Trip to Rome Next Week


Cardiff (PRWEB) May 22, 2009

Manchester United supporters will have high expectations as they head to Rome to watch their team play Barcelona, in order to retain their title as champions of Europe for the second year running. Yet, supporting a successful football team comes at a high price, and so making sure that the trip is insured from start to finish is an integral part of ensuring a hassle-free holiday.

The cost of success

United Law Group Donates $15,000 to Organization Rebuilding Bomb Shelters in Israel


Irvine, CA (Vocus) June 5, 2009

United Law Group, the leading provider of legal foreclosure prevention and foreclosure litigation services donated $ 15,000 to renovate a bomb shelter in the town of Nahariya, which is located in the northern region of Israel. The people in this town face imminent danger as attacks from the north leave them little to no time to enter shelters. The firm plans to sponsor additional shelters and is encouraging other organizations to do the same.

According to IsraelNN.com, the Israeli Defense Ministry and the Home Front Command put together the largest war simulation in the history of the State of Israel from May 31 – June 4, 2009. Beginning with a “battle in Gaza” on Sunday, this five-day drill was designed to test Israel’s preparedness in the event of a war.

The map of the region shows that people living in the red zone have no warning of an attack from the north. They must enter a bomb shelter immediately. Others have anywhere from 30 seconds to 3 minutes to take shelter.

“This is a very real threat for these people,” said Sean Rutledge, Managing Director for United Law Group. “Unfortunately, the private communal bomb shelters were not designed for people to remain for extended periods. They don’t have bathrooms, electricity, mattresses or cooking areas.”

During the Second War with Lebanon, families were forced to stay in the shelters for 34 days.

“United Law Group is happy to be part of the effort to make these shelters livable for the people that need them,” continued Rutledge.

Where previous conflicts were fought on battlefields away from the cities, the war with Lebanon taught the Israeli people that civilians could be targets. At the time there weren’t enough bomb shelters available so people were forced to flee from the north to the southern region of the country.

“My 85-year-old mother and my sister who, at the time was battling cancer, were forced to flee to Tel Aviv,” said Rony Jordan, founder and director of Tikvat Am Yisrael. “Their experience was not unique. It made me realize that there is a need for clean, safe shelters to protect the weakest members of the towns. That’s when I decided to focus the efforts TAY Ministries in this area.”

A child of Holocaust survivors, Rony was raised in Nahariya, Israel and served in the Israeli Defense Force. He later traveled to the United States, where he married his wife Cynthia and worked as a general contractor for 20 years.

“The translation of our name is Hope for the People of Israel,” says Rony. “People living in Israel today don’t have much hope. But with the help and support of companies like United Law Group, we will bring hope back to the people.”

About Tikvat Am Yisrael

Tikvat Am Yisrael is a nonprofit organization that reaches out to meet the practical needs of Israelis. Their current goal is to assist Israelis who have urgent needs including: renovating bomb shelters, encouraging IDF soldiers, and assisting the forgotten victims of terror attacks. Since they do not have a large overhead, all funds are guaranteed to go directly to the field. For more information visit http://www.tayministries.org.

About United Law Group

United Law Group is a national law firm with offices in California, New York, Florida, Ohio, Nevada & Arizona. It is the largest foreclosure prevention and litigation firm in the country with attorneys licensed in every state. Dedicated to helping homeowners facing hardships to keep their houses, United Law Group uses legal channels to compel banks to modify adjustable-rate to fixed-rate mortgages, reduce principal and interest, and create other fair solutions between the lender and borrower.

For further information on United Law Group, visit: http://www.unitedlawgroup.com or call Corvi Urling, Executive Consultant for United Law Group at (800) 680-5717.

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NBA Cares and United Nations Foundation Partner to Launch Send A Net. Save A Life. See A Game. Presented By HP


New York, NY (Vocus) December 15, 2009

Today, the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the United Nations Foundations Nothing But Nets tipped off a promotion–Send a Net. Save a Life. See a Game. presented by HP–to send anti-malaria bed nets to refugees in 11 African countries. The effort is part of the NBA Cares Season of Giving and runs through January 31, 2010. Starting today, NBA fans can log on to http://www.NothingButNets.net to donate $ 10 or more and get two complimentary tickets to an NBA game, subject to availability.

Send a Net. Save a Life. See a Game. encourages NBA fans and Nothing But Nets supporters to send life-saving bed nets to displaced families in Africa to help protect them from malaria, the number one killer of refugees on the continent. The promotion will also help the United Nations Foundation’s Nothing But Nets, in partnership with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), reach its goal of protecting more than one million refugees in Africa from malaria this year.

Thanks to the commitment of the NBA, our partners, and supporters, weve already covered more than 600,000 refugees with bed nets in eastern Africa this year alone, said Nothing But Nets Director Adrianna Logalbo. Now we hope the NBA and its fans can help us exceed our goal to protect more than one million of the worlds most vulnerable people as the need for these life-saving nets is far from over.

ESPN sportswriter Rick Reilly, who inspired the United Nations Foundation to create the Nothing But Nets campaign through his May 2006 Sports Illustrated column, will match fan donations — net for net — up to a total of $ 25,000.

This tremendous effort aligns with the NBAs long tradition of addressing important health and wellness issues worldwide, said NBA Executive Vice President Social Responsibility and Player Programs Kathy Behrens. We know our fans care about these causes as passionately as the NBA, and we are proud to provide them the opportunity to make a life-saving donation as part of the NBA Cares Season of Giving.

Long-lasting, insecticide-treated bed nets are one of the easiest and most cost-effective methods of preventing the diseases spread. They create a protective barrier against mosquitoes at night, when the vast majority of malaria transmissions occur. One bed net can protect a family of four, and lasts three to five years. It costs just $ 10 to purchase, deliver, and educate the recipient on its proper use.

To date, Nothing But Nets has raised close to $ 30 million and has sent nearly three million nets to children, pregnant women, and refugees throughout Africa. To learn more about Nothing But Nets or to make your life-saving donation, log on to http://www.NothingButNets.net.

About United Nations Foundation:

The UN Foundation is an advocate for the UN and a platform for connecting people, ideas, and capital to help the United Nations solve global problems. We build partnerships, grow constituencies, mobilize resources, and advocate policy changes to support the UN’s work for individual and global progress. The UN Foundation’s workfocused on select global problemsis decreasing child mortality, improving disaster relief, protecting diverse cultures and environments, creating a clean energy future, empowering women and girls, and improving U.S.-UN relations. For more information, visit http://www.UNFoundation.org.

About Nothing But Nets:

Nothing But Nets is a global, grassroots campaign to save lives by preventing malaria, a leading killer of children in Africa. Inspired by sports columnist Rick Reilly, hundreds of thousands of people have joined the campaign that was created by the United Nations Foundation in 2006. Founding campaign partners include the National Basketball Associations NBA Cares, The people of The United Methodist Church, and Sports Illustrated. It only costs $ 10 to provide an insecticide-treated bed net that can prevent this deadly disease. Visit http://www.NothingButNets.net to send a net and save a life.

About HP:

HP creates new possibilities for technology to have a meaningful impact on people, businesses, governments and society. The worlds largest technology company, HP brings together a portfolio that spans printing, personal computing, software, services and IT infrastructure to solve customer problems. More information about HP (NYSE: HPQ) is available at http://www.hp.com.

About NBA Cares:

NBA Cares is the league’s social responsibility initiative that builds on the NBA’s long tradition of addressing important social issues in the United States and around the world. Through this umbrella program, the NBA, its teams and players have donated more than $ 115 million to charity, provided more than one million hours of hands-on service to communities around the world, and created more than 440 places where kids and families can live, learn or play. NBA Cares works with internationally recognized youth-serving programs that support education, youth and family development, and health-related causes, including: KaBOOM!, Special Olympics, Boys and Girls Clubs of America, UNICEF, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and the Global Business Coalition on HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Tuberculosis.

Media Contacts:

Amy DiElsi, United Nations Foundation, (202) 419-3230 or adielsi(at)unfoundation(dot)org

Jonathan Hammond, NBA, (212) 407-8671 or jhammond(at)nba(dot)com

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UN Foundation Statement on President Obama’s Remarks at the United Nations High-Level Summit on the Millennium Development Goals


Washington, D.C. (Vocus) September 22, 2010

Today, President Obama brought the United States and the United Nations closer to solving the world’s most pressing problems by fulfilling the U.S. government’s landmark pledge to energize cooperation and make development assistance more efficient. President Obamas speech at the UN high-level summit on the Millennium Development Goals underscored the Administrations policy that the MDGs are not just the worlds goals, but also are Americas goals. United Nations Foundation President Timothy E. Wirth released the following statement in response to the Presidents speech:

Ten years ago, world leaders set forth an ambitious set of Millennium Development Goals to tackle some of the most challenging problems facing the world. With five years to go on this 15-year pledge, it is imperative that we evaluate progress and refresh our plan to combat global poverty at its root causes.

President Obamas decision to unveil his new development policy at the UN and in the context of the MDGs shows appreciation for the important role that the UN and UN agencies play in battling extreme poverty and the MDGs play in inspiring action. His speech before the UN today fully embraced the MDGs as a central part of Americas national security and foreign policy objectives. The plan, which focuses on measurable and sustainable outcomes for foreign assistance, makes it clear that smart, modern development strategies best position the U.S. to create and leverage partnerships to combat global problems. The Administration has emphasized that the urgent issues of energy access and protection of biodiversity, women and children’s health, and cleaner and safer cookstoves, are all critical areas where coordinated global efforts must be set forth to achieve the MDGs.

A key element of the Presidents plan for achieving the MDGs is the emphasis on the importance of partnerships. UN Foundation Chairman and Founder Ted Turner has highlighted that everyone can be a partner and anyone can dedicate their time, energy, or money to help the UN advance the MDGs.

At the UN Foundation, we have two new initiatives that took center stage this week as global leaders converged in New York:

United States Supreme Court Grants Petition to Hear Constitutionality of Prison Strip Searches on Non-Criminal Offenses

New York, NY (PRWEB) April 11, 2011

On April 4, 2011 the United States Supreme Court granted Certiorari in Florence v. Board of Chosen Freeholders (No. 10-945). On January 14, 2011, New York attorney Susan Chana Lask filed a Petition for Certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court for her client Albert Florence to decide the issue whether the Fourth Amendment permits jails to conduct suspicion-less strip searches whenever an individual is arrested for minor offenses. Such offenses include traffic tickets, failure to pay a fine or violating a dog leash law.

In 2005, Susan Chana Lask filed a class action complaint in the District Court of New Jersey (Camden) Case No. 05-3619 (JHR) for her client Albert Florence and all those persons blanket strip searched in jails for non-criminal offenses, such as traffic tickets and failure to pay a fine. The District Court appointed Ms, Lask class counsel and certified the class, but for 6 long years litigation continued on the false arrest as alleged in the Complaint, to finally get to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The saga began when, as alleged in the complaint filed in Camden County New Jersey District Court, Florence v. Burlington, et al., Case No. 05-3619 (JHR), in 2004 Mr. Florence was falsely arrested, imprisoned for 7 days and strip searched twice during his imprisonment for a minor court fine he already paid. As alleged in the Complaint, and as discovered during depositions, this occurred because a false warrant from Essex County was generated against him. So one nice afternoon, while he and his pregnant wife and four year old son were driving their BMW SUV home from a family dinner in Burlington County, they were pulled over for allegedly speeding. Mr. Florence was a passenger in the car. At depositions it was confirmed that instead of issuing a speeding ticket, the officers claimed there was a warrant for Mr. Florence’s arrest. They arrested him in front of his four-year-old son and hauled away without any information to his wife, April. For days, April pleaded with officials in Burlington County and Essex County to release her husband. The Complaint further alleges that the clerks ignored her or directed her somewhere else because they did not want to handle it. After 7 days, two strip searches and refusing him a shower, soap or toothbrush and shackling him to murderers and rapists, an Essex County Judge realized the mistake and released Mr. Florence. As stated by Mr. Florence, the release was way too late and the harm so dehumanizing, the release will never repair what Mr. Florence and his family went through. To this day, as Mr. Florence explains, whenever his son sees a police officer he says “Daddy, are you going to jail?”

In depositions during the case, and as reported by the Courthouse News Service – ABA Journal, the

Philadelphia Inquirer and the Star Ledger on April 4 and 5, 2011, among other media, Albert Florence detailed what he experienced at both jails. He explained that in Burlington they brought him to a shower room with a curtain that did not close all the way. Albert saw people pass by and look in the room while an an officer about a foot from him sat in a chair ordering Albert to remove all of his clothes, strip naked, turn around with his arms spread wide, spread his “cheeks”, squat and cough, run his hands through his hair while naked and manipulate his genitals in front of this strange man, with a curtain they did not care to close to protect at least some privacy. If that was not bad enough, as Mr. Florence explained, about 6 days later Essex County picked him up, shackled him to murderers and rapists and brought him to an even far more dehumanizing fate. There he was brought to a larger room where officers and inmates were at desks and walking in and out of the room while Albert was ordered to strip naked with a group of men. They all removed their clothes, stood naked together, were ordered to squat and cough, spread their “cheeks” and manipulate their genitals. Albert described the incident as “an out of body experience.” He explained that for 7 days of false imprisonment with two strip searches, he saw his life flash before him, thinking he would never see his wife and child again. Depositions confirm that he was a finance manager of a car dealership, he just purchased a home for his family, and was about 32-years-old when he was imprisoned and dehumanized for something he never did. In fact, Mr. Florence confirms that his wife suffered a premature labor from the entire incident as she fought for 7 days to find her husband that the prison system basically disappeared him, when they had no right in the first place according to the law and as discovered in depositions.

More concerning to Mr. Florence is New Jersey has a law mandating arrestees be brought before a magistrate in 72 hours. N.J. Ct. R. 3:4-l(b) (bail must be set for persons arrested pursuant to a warrant “without unnecessary delay, and no later than 12 hours after arrest”); id. R. 3:4-2(a) (if a detainee remains in custody, he “shall be brought before a judge for a first appearance… within 72 hours after arrest, excluding holidays). During the case and in news interviews, the prisons fail to explain why they did not bring Mr. Florence to a magistrate to at least make bail and get released before being strip searched twice and left for 7 days.

“I can explain. The system is failing us like everything else because there are no checks and balances and we as citizens are sitting back and doing nothing. Courts are falling apart. Parks are closing. People need to get back to the ’60’s and stand up for our rights, not wait for our country to crumble. If we need to protest then lets do that. Otherwise,we have one man, Albert Florence, who had to go to jail and suffer to protect everyone else. If we do not unite and stand up for our rights then this is not the United States–it is the Un-united States,” says Susan Chana Lask.

In 2008, Senior District Court Judge Joseph H. Rodriguez ,Case No. 05-3619 (JHR), agreed with Ms. Lask and held it was unconstitutional for prisons to strip search non-criminal arrestees. In 2010, Defendants appealed to the Third Circuit. There Ms. Lask received amicus brief support from five former New Jersey Attorneys General, Robert J. Del Tufo, Deborah T. Poritz, John J. Farmer Jr., Peter C. Harvey and Zulima V. Farber stating the strip searches on non-criminal arrestees are unconstitutional and violate the every Attorney General guidelines they set forth for years.

On September 21, 2010, the Third Circuit ruled in a published decision at 621 F.3d 29 that although a split in the circuits exists regarding the constitutionality of blanket strip searching without a reasonable basis, they deferred to the minority of two Circuits, the 9th and 11th, that recently overruled themselves and now permit blanket strips searches. The Third Circuit joined the minority and ruled blanket strip searches are constitutional. In that decisions, Third Circuit Judge Pollack dissented, stating The majority sweeps away twenty-five years of jurisprudence, giving jailors the unfettered right to conduct mandatory, routine, suspicion-less body cavity searches on any citizen who may be arrested for minor offenses, such as violating a leash law or a traffic code, and who pose no credible risk for smuggling contraband into the jail.

“For 25 years this Country did not tolerate blanket strip searches of non-criminal arrestees. This started with the case of Bell v. Wolfish,441 U.S. 520 (1979), where the Supreme Court there held there must be “reasonable suspicion” before stripping non-criminal arrestees. Now, 25 years later, until the Supreme Court decides this constitutional issue, we have to worry that when your grandmother forgets to pay her traffic ticket or your daughter has her taillight out, they’re going to be hauled to jail and without any reason ordered to strip in front of strangers, squat and cough and be forever humiliated. That’s torture, not prison security;

United Parents Protects Children and Their Privacy Online, Launches Early Alert System for Caring Parents

Tel Aviv, Israel (PRWEB) May 03, 2011

United Parents Child Protection Service (http://www.unitedparents.com) launched today as the free early-warning solution to help caring parents safeguard children from predators and bullies online, without invading their privacy.

The free software installed on a childs computer and those shared with the rest of the family offers parents serenity through the knowledge their children are shielded from online offenders. Social networking and instant messaging are monitored in the background and analyzed by over fifty behavioral parameters to root out potential threats. Parents dont see their childs online conversations, but instead receive an alert when suspicious relationships or activities are detected. They can also view a big picture assessment of the childs online behavior via web dashboard. Both tools provide increased opportunities to initiate conversations offline, building trust among the family.

Our kids today have more social interactions online than anyplace else, and its a challenge for even the most involved parent to keep up, said United Parents CEO Hanan Lavy. Our comprehensive solution represents the next generation of online child-safety. Unlike previous tools which only filter content or monitor sites over the public web, United Parents extends the reach of parents to where their kids really live online their personal social network and I.M. connections. Yet, we do it in a way that respects them and keeps their privacy intact.

The service uses the power of the crowd to amplify its safety net and build a protective community among enrolled families. It maintains a comprehensive digital fingerprint for every potential predator who interacts with a registered child. Parents are alerted whenever their child encounters one of these previously identified threats. As the user base grows, United Parents leverages the communitys collective power to provide increasingly secure protection for all members. Other features include:

Microfinance USA Conference to Ignite Action for Consumer Protection and Increased Microfinance Services in the United States


New York, NY (PRWEB) May 09, 2011

WHAT: 2nd National Microfinance USA Conference

WHEN: Monday, May 23 & Tuesday, May 24, 2011

WHERE: Metropolitan Pavilion, 125 W 18th St. New York, NY 10011

SPEAKER HIGHLIGHTS: Carlos Danel, Compartamos Banco; Jonathan Morduch, NYU Wagner; Felix Salmon, Reuters; Adam Davidson, NPR; Daryl Collins, Financial Diaries and Bankable Frontiers; Bob Annibale, Global Director of Microfinance and Community Development, Citi

Despite an economy crippled by stubbornly high unemployment rates and an ongoing credit crunch, microlenders across the U.S. are creating bright spots of economic mobility and small business growth. At the 2011 Microfinance USA Conference (May 23rd and 24th), the nations top practitioners, investors, and researchers will convene to discuss the future of U.S. microfinance. There, they will be joined by international microlending organizations to announce a campaign for consumer protection standards.

WHILE SMALL BUSINESS LENDING STAGNATES, MICROFINANCE GROWS

With a recent Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council report indicating a 30 percent drop in small business lending in recent years, the need for microfinancethe practice of responsible lending to small businesses too new or too high-risk to qualify with mainstream lendersis clear. And the ability of microfinance to ignite lasting change is proven: Opportunity Fund and the ACCION U.S. Network, the conference presenters, report a business survival rate twice the national average, repayment rates that rival those of mainstream lenders, and a boost in local job creation for each loan provided. Both lenders estimate an average loan size of just over $ 7,000.

Its no wonder that demand for our microloans has nearly doubled since 2010, says Eric Weaver, Opportunity Fund founder and CEO. Especially since the economic meltdown, people are in need of financial services they can trust. And thats what microfinance isa move towards an integrated, inclusive and reliable financial sector.

Small businesses create 64 percent of the new jobs in our country, says Bob Annibale, Global Director of Microfinance and Community Development for Citi. Its clear that microfinance is meeting a critical need, enabling very small business owners to access capital, obtain valuable business training and move their way into the financial mainstream.

CONSUMER PROTECTION: STRENGTHENING MICROFINANCE’S FUTURE

Microfinance USA 2011 will chart the course for the future of the U.S. microfinance industry by rallying U.S. MFIs around a new effort to create industry-wide consumer protection standards. At the conference, Opportunity Fund, Kiva, and ACCION International will call on U.S. microlenders to join them as endorsers of the Smart Campaign, the first global effort to unite microlenders around the common goal of providing all clients with transparent, respectful, and prudent financial services.

“As microfinance continues to grow and mature, we must always keep our clients best interest at the center of our work, says Michael Schlein, president and CEO of ACCION International. This means creating products that are fair and transparent, and committing ourselves to strong consumer protection.

MICROFINANCE IN ACTION

In addition to hearing from over 140 high-caliber microfinance experts at over 40 sessions, conference attendees will tour small businesses in New York that have benefited from microloans. They will meet with business owners like Fauzia Rahman, a former social service worker who struggled to make ends meet after the birth of her first child. She opened a small Halal food cart in the Bronx, and, with a microloan from ACCION USA, a member of the ACCION U.S. Network, was able to buy a larger cart. She met with great success and she recently received a new loan that enabled her to expand her business, double her locations, and hire another full-time employee. Today, her son is looking forward to starting college in the fall.

Nationwide, microfinance has a meaningful impact in hard-hit communities. Bernard McGraw became separated from his wife and children during the chaos following Hurricane Katrina. The family reunited in San Antonio, TX, where he opened Bernards Creole Kitchen, a small makeshift restaurant that quickly became a local favorite, garnering many food awards. A microloan from ACCION Texas-Louisiana, a member of the ACCION U.S. Network, enabled Bernard to relocate the restaurant from a cramped shack to an inviting location, where it has continued to attract a loyal clientele.

I had the vision of how to rebuild my life, says Bernard, but I didnt have the funds. Thanks to my microloan, Ive been able to grow my business and support my family. After receiving help when he needed it most, Bernard also started Gumbo Under the Bridge, a program that feeds homeless people.

ABOUT THE MICROFINANCE USA CONFERENCE

Microfinance USA is the conference where the nation’s leading microfinance champions exchange ideas and information that set the agenda for the future of the field. Conceived and produced by Opportunity Fund and now in its third year, Microfinance USA 2011 is hosted by Opportunity Fund, the ACCION U.S. Network and Kiva. Citi is the lead conference sponsor.

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Talk Radio Day, Live From the United Nations


New York, NY (PRWEB) June 09, 2011

The United Nations Foundation and Talkers Magazine today host the sixth annual Talk Radio Day at the UN. More than 20 talk radio hosts from across the United States will be airing their shows from the United Nations in New York. The hosts will be interviewing UN Ambassadors and officials from the UN and its agencies to offer listeners first-hand accounts about the work of the United Nations.

Whether it is leading the global fight against AIDS, or protecting civilians from Cote dIvoire to Libya, the UN is at the forefront of the major challenges facing the world today, said Timothy E. Wirth, President of the United Nations Foundation. We are pleased to celebrate the sixth anniversary of this event and to be able to provide the American public the opportunity to learn more about the UNs work by hearing directly from its staff and officials.

Talk radio and its dedicated community of listeners represents millions of Americans across the U.S., said Michael Harrison, publisher of Talkers Magazine. This is a terrific opportunity for our hosts to bring the work of the men and women of the UN to Americas kitchens, drive times and mobile devices.

The talk radio hosts will be on the air live from the United Nations today from 5:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m., offering millions of Americans the opportunity to learn more about the day-to-day operations of the international organization. They will discuss topics ranging from the massive humanitarian relief effort following the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti to the UNs multi-faceted approach to peacekeeping missions around the globe. Several UN guests will focus on the UNs role in combating poverty and improving the health and living standards for millions around the world through the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

This years participating talk radio hosts include:

1.

United Nations: Son Preference Perpetuates Discrimination and Violations of Womens Rights It Must and Can End

Geneva, Switzerland (PRWEB) June 14, 2011

Gender-biased sex selection reflects and fuels a culture of discrimination and violence, and must be addressed urgently by all segments of government and society as a matter of womens human rights, five UN agencies have stressed.

A statement issued today by OHCHR, UNFPA, UNICEF, UN Women and the WHO* reviews the evidence behind the causes, consequences and lessons learned regarding son preference or sex selection favouring boys in many parts of South, East and Central Asia, where ratios as high as 130 boys for every 100 girls have been observed.

Sex selection in favour of boys is a symptom of pervasive social, cultural, political and economic injustices against women, and a manifest violation of womens human rights, the statement notes, citing one mans testimony that the birth of a son enhances my status, while that of a girl lowers my head.

There is huge pressure on women to produce sonswhich not only directly affects womens reproductive decisions, with implications for their health and survival, but also puts women in a position where they must perpetuate the lower status of girls through son preference,” according to the statement.

“It is also women who have to bear the consequences of giving birth to an unwanted girl child. These consequences can include violence, abandonment, divorce or even death, the statement adds.

Against the backdrop of such intense pressure, women seek to discover the sex of a foetus through ultrasound. The discovery of a female foetus can then lead to its abortion. Sex selection can also take place before a pregnancy is established, or after the birth of a girl, through child neglect or infanticide. Over decades, the practice has caused a sex-ratio imbalance in many countries, particularly in South Asia, East Asia and Central Asia.

There is also the possibility of an increase in violence against women resulting from such an imbalance. For instance, the lack of women available for marriage in some areas may lead to the trafficking of women for forced marriages from other regions or the sharing of brides among brothers.

In some countries, pre-natal sex determination and disclosure are illegal, while others have laws banning abortion for sex selection. But such restrictions are also bypassed by the use of clandestine procedures, which may put womens health in jeopardy.

States have an obligation to ensure that these injustices are addressed without exposing women to the risk of death or serious injury by denying them access to needed services such as safe abortion to the full extent of the law, and other health care services, experts from the UN agencies warned.

Renewed and concerted efforts are needed by governments and civil society to address the deeply rooted gender discrimination which lies at the heart of sex selection, the experts noted, recommending a multi-pronged approach to resolving the problem.

The statement proposes concrete steps to tackle the problem, including the collection of more reliable data on the extent of the problem and the factors driving it; guidelines on the use of technology for health professionals; supportive measures for girls and women, such as incentives for families with only daughters; and other legal and awareness-raising actions.

States should develop and promotepolicies in areas such as inheritance laws, dowries and financial and other social protection in old age…that reflect a commitment to human rights and gender equality, the statement suggests. States should support advocacy and awareness-raising activities that stimulate discussion and debatearound the concept of the equal value of boys and girls.

The statement cites the Republic of Korea as one country where the preference for sons has largely been overcome through a combination of strategies, including attention to gender equality in laws and policies, advocacy, media campaigns and economic growth.

The experts reaffirmed the commitment of UN agencies to support efforts by governments and Non-Government Organizations to redress the situation.


Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), The United Nations Childrens Fund (UNICEF), United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) and the World Health Organization (WHO)

To read the full interagency statement, please visit:

http://www.who.int/reproductivehealth/publications/gender_rights/9789241501460/en/index.html

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