February 27 – World NGO Day

As we celebrate the World NGO Day, ...

… I thank those who worked tirelessly to promote women’s human rights, gender equality, and the empowerment of women. The pioneer promoter of the women rights’ is the International Alliance of Women (IAW), which is the first international NGO that was established in 1904 for the promotion of the suffrage right for women before extending its interest to all aspects of women emancipation and empowerment. It comprises a number of member organizations across different continents that have objectives that correspond to women’s social, economic and political empowerment. The IAW created commissions which work in specific thematic areas; Climate Change, Democracy, Digital Divide, Disability, Education, Financial/Economic Policies, Health, Human Rights, Indigenous Rights, Migration and Refugees, Peace, Protection of Privacy/GDPR, and Violence against Women. The themes that are discussed in general meetings are stimulating and the plan of action is inspiring and find their way overall through the member, regional vice presidents as well as IAW‘s magazine.

According to IAW, all women and girls should be able to fully and equally enjoy their human rights. It has long history in commitment for Women’s Rights. As a result of the IAW’s participation in UN Women’s expert discussions for the Generation Equality Forum, the organization serves as a major informational resource on gender equality and women’s empowerment. The IAW has general consultative status at the UN Economic and Social Council and is accredited to many specialized UN agencies, has participatory status with the Council of Europe and is represented at the Arab League, the African Union and other international organizations. Thanks to IAW, many United Nations World Conferences organized over the years have recognized the significance and value of women’s contributions as equal partners.

The IAW is up-to-date with the challenges that the whole world is facing. For instance, the Commission on the Status of Women in 2022, in which IAW participated by lobbying and with parallel events, agreed on “identifying and eliminating all forms of discrimination against women and girls in the context of climate change, environmental degradation and disasters. IAW is also involved in the Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC), and it believes that Injustices based on gender start even before conception and persist into young girls’ lives. Many females learn to deal with this issue and don’t realize how much easier their lives could be if they were raised and treated the same as boys.

On the World Ngo Day, I am so honored to be part of the International Alliance of Women as a board member and the representative of Hoda Charawi Association which is the pioneer feminist association in Egypt and a member of IAW since 1923.

I thank IAW and all civil society actors who are at the forefront of the fight for women’s rights.

Dr. Horeya Megahed
Regional Vice President 
Arab and Gulf Region


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