The United Nations Human Rights Council held its forty-sixth regular session from 22 February to 23 March 2021 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.  It started off with a high-level segment from 22 to 24 February where dignitaries representing more than 130 countries addressed the Council on their governments’ efforts to promote and protect human rights. It was held for the first time entirely online. This session also welcomed the new president, Ambassador Nazhat Shameem Khan of Fiji.  It was opened with speeches from Secretary-General of the United Nations, António...

Every year, on the 8th of March, we celebrate International Women’s Day, an event promoted by the United Nations in order to celebrate the progress reached by women in the economic, political, and cultural fields. The theme proposed for 2021 is: “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world”. This celebrates the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The campaign slogan is: “Choose to challenge”. It is important to know this celebration as...

Every year, on the 8th of March, we celebrate International Women’s Day, an event promoted by the United Nations in order to celebrate the progress reached by women in the economic, political, and cultural fields. The theme proposed for 2021 is: “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world”. This celebrates the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world in shaping a more equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. The campaign slogan is: “Choose to challenge”. It is important to know this celebration as...

IIMA Members from PNG, Sr. Pamela Vecina and Sr. Alice Fulgencio, participated at the in-country consultation for Papua New Guinea’s Universal Periodic Review held at Emmaus Conference Center, Port Moresby, from February 15-17, 2021. They represented the Istituto Internazionale Maria Ausiliatrice (IIMA). A total of twenty five representatives of various NGOs working on several human rights issues across the country attended the conference. The three-day conference-workshop was a project sponsored by the International Catholic Center of Geneva (CCIG). The project’s aim is to help civil society actors to acquire a methodology...

On December 12, 2020, the network of the nine Institutions of Higher Studies of the Istituto Internazionale Maria Ausiliatrice (ISS-FMA) Asia organized an online Conference on “Human Trafficking - A violation of Human Rights”. There were approximately 800 participants, mainly students and some faculty members coming from India, the Philippines, and Japan. The event, which marked the observance of Human Rights Day, aimed to raise awareness on one of the most extensive forms of modern slavery, that is, Trafficking in Person (T.I.P.). Dr. Regina Mary Rathinaswamy,  Core Group Member of ISS...

October 11 marks the International Day of the Girl Child, which was established in 2011 by the United Nations General Assembly through the adoption of Resolution 66/170. This particular focus on the girl is a recognition that every child, in particular  every girl, has the dignity to be respected and the rights to be protected. It was the Fourth World Conference on Women held in 1995 in Beijing, China, that highlighted  the right  of every girl. The conference culminated in the adoption of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action: the most...

Since 1994, World Teachers’ Day is held annually on 5 October to commemorate the anniversary of the adoption of the 1966 ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers (https://en.unesco.org/themes/teachers/ceart ), which sets benchmarks regarding the rights and responsibilities of teachers and standards for their initial preparation and further education, recruitment, employment, and teaching and learning conditions. In 2020, World Teachers’ Day will be dedicated to the theme “Teachers: Leading in crisis, reimagining the future”, providing the occasion to celebrate the teaching profession and draw attention to the voices of teachers worldwide. This...

On September 8, we celebrate the International Literacy Day. Established in 1966 by UNESCO, it reminds the international community of the importance of literacy for individuals, communities and societies, and the need for intensified efforts towards more literate societies. Nowadays, the alarming data of 773 million adults and young people lacking basic literacy skills and 617 million children and adolescents not achieving minimum proficiency levels in reading and mathematics show how literacy still remains a critical challenge. In particular, the International Literacy Day 2020 focuses on “Literacy teaching and learning in the...

Since 1999, the UN General Assembly has declared the 12th of August as the International Youth Day, an opportunity to celebrate and mainstream young peoples’ voices, actions and initiatives, as well as their meaningful, universal and equitable engagement and participation in political, economic and social life and processes. This year, the International Youth Day will focus on “Youth Engagement for Global Action”, seeking to highlight the ways in which the engagement of young people at the local, national and global levels is enriching national and multilateral institutions and processes, as well...

In the occasion of the 30th Convention on the Rights of the Child anniversary, ratified in 1989 by the highest number of Countries (196) and in the fastest way than the others, a three-day commemorative celebration was held in Palais des Nations on the 18th, 19th and 20th of November in Geneva. The event, that took place in the symbolic city of the Convention writing and negotiation, was the peak of a series of events organized throughout 2019. Moreover, the “30 Years of Children’s Rights” book has been published in...