CSW61 was the greatest gathering of women’s organisations since the Beijing Platform for Action and the United Nations buildings and their surrounds were a blaze of colour mixed with the formal suits of male employees and a true cacophony of languages. All this occurred against a background of bitter cold, snow caked streets and the noises of traffic and sirens that epitomise a giant city.
SISWP Team consisted of President Theresa, Programme Director Di Lockwood and SISWP Scholarship winner Sonia Casonova and Joanne Ramselaar, who were introduced to the international nature of Soroptimism which s evident at CSW as members from the four federations meet, support each other, share experiences and projects, renew friendships, establish new ones and realise that despite our differences in size and structure, that we all share a common purpose and passion. It is a little chilling, however, to realise that Soroptimist International is better known and recognised at the United Nations than it is in our own countries, one of the values of the CSW meeting is the opportunity to network and identify like-minded organisations who might be interested in supporting our written statements.
Inside the United Nations, although there were disagreements about priorities and wording, the atmosphere was one of cooperation and a passionate desire to achieve the change that women have been striving for over decades. Despite ongoing concerns that Agreed Conclusions would not be achieved this was done on Friday afternoon of the first week. SISWP Members must now be alert to hold our respective governments to their commitments. This is a vital task for all civil society organisations.
for more indepth information about CSW61, pease read:
Programme Director Di Lockwood's report
Scholarship winner's Sonia Casonova and Joanne Ramselaar's reports which can be found here
Some Images taken by Di, Sonia and Joanne from CSW 61