Month: September 2016

Sisterhood Unfulfilled: Liberated from Grief

This is the final blog post of a three part series written by Abby Tseggai. Moments before Fana landed at JFK airport, in New York City, she made her mind up that she would cut her hair in the days to follow; just like the two black women sitting right in front of her. Their Afros resembled liberation in her eyes. It had been a long flight, and for the first half, Fana struggled to accept that she was actually leaving the safety and security of her parents and homeland. The burden of her family’s suffering combined with the pressure she felt to make her parents proud was intense, to say the least. But as she neared the final destination, Fana finally made an agreement with herself. She promised herself that no matter what it took, she would triumph all the tragedies she had experienced in her short 18-years of life. She was determined to adapt to a whole new world and all the things that come with it. In that moment, she found the confidence she …

Young Leaders Learn and Share at the Global Citizen Festival

Working as leaders and advocates in the areas of sexual & reproductive health and rights, HIV/AIDS, gender equality, and mental health, 20 different young leaders from 13 different countries convened in New York City last week as Johnson & Johnson’s 2016 Young Leaders. Most are involved in partnerships with Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and all are very influential grassroots leaders and advocates in their communities. These leaders were brought to New York City to learn, share, interact with J&J leaders and participate in the Global Citizen Festival. As a major sponsor of the Global Citizen Festival and longtime partner for sustainable global health efforts, Johnson & Johnson holds the foundational belief that change happens one person at a time and the world moves forward one leader at a time. “Everyone today is a person of power… and we must see a reflection of ourselves in every injustice that we see.” – Yemurai Nyoni, Women Deliver Top Left: On day one, Sarah of Over The Horizon Strategies, emphasized the power of your story. Giving some tips, she suggested that …

Nyumbani: A Safe and Caring Home for Hope

Imagine yourself as a little kid. Imagine yourself just existing and playing in a limitless world without worries about global issues, family problems or work obligations. Then finally imagine yourself finding out that you are HIV-positive. All of a sudden your world comes crashing down – nobody wants you anymore. Your parents become scared of being near you and they don’t have the ability to help you with medications. Imagine being abandoned by the ones that are supposed to always be there for you. This is a reality a lot of kids in Sub-Saharan Africa still face today. Once they are diagnosed their families may not have the ability or willingness to care for them and they are left alone and abandoned. Many of the kids also have parents who have died from AIDS.  This is where Nyumbani Children’s Home comes into the picture. Nyumbani in Kenya takes care of HIV/AIDS-affected kids, ranging from newborns to young adults in their early twenties. They provide a safe home, treatment and education for these kids to make sure that they aren’t left to die …

Girls’ Globe Bloggers at the Global Citizen Festival 2016

Girls’ Globe was present at the Global Citizen Festival, sponsored by Johnson & Johnson, to provide coverage of the festival and to share stories of the JNJ Young Leaders. During the festival Girls’ Globe’s team of young women bloggers interviewed festival participants, talked with the Young Leaders and reported live from the heart of the action. But here’s the question: Can a festival really create sustainable change or make a difference? Here are some of our bloggers’ thoughts: I think the most profound moments during the Global Citizens Festival were when I had moments to contemplate the sheer magnitude of the experience. The idea that more than 60,000 people were gathered from all over the world with varying socioeconomic and religious backgrounds to celebrate change in spite of the current geopolitical climate. Priyanka Chopra said it best, “The Global Citizen Festival is the only gathering that empowers people to make the change that they want to see.” I’ve always been taught to celebrate in the good times and in the bad; on September 24 the Global Citizens came together to …

Young Leaders and Johnson & Johnson work together to reach Global Goals

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) require a lot of commitment and hard work, and young leaders have an essential role in making them a success. The private sector also has a big role to play, and many companies have already settled ambitious and specific plans on how to work with the SDGs. One of these companies is Johnson & Johnson – a private sector leader in advancing the health and rights of women and children around the world. For this year’s United Nations General Assembly, Johnson & Johnson invited young leaders from all over the world to inspire and lead for change. Young leaders from Nepal, USA and Zambia speak what everyone can do to make a change in their communities and lead for a successful outcome of the SDGs by 2030. In this next video, we get an insight into Johnson & Johnson’s plans and how companies can work efficiently and in partnership towards far-reaching goals. Read more about Johnson & Johnson’s 2030 Promise here. Girls’ Globe is sponsored by Johnson & Johnson to provide coverage during …

Innovation & Partnership to Advance Global Goals in Health

It takes a little bit of innovation and creativity to use the same tools to solve a gray haired problem. Shirley Bejarano, Graduate Research Assistant at University of South Florida ,shared her thoughts on the various ways that innovation and technology have helped healthcare workers complete their jobs in a more culturally conclusive manner. While chatting she highlighted the use of technology to track certain infectious diseases as well as aid in the elimination of mother to child transmission of HIV. Technological advances are present in almost every aspect of our lives, but they are so crucial in the global public health field. Health workers in rural areas are now able to use mobile applications to receive up to date information which in turn leads to healthier and happier patients. So our phones are more than Twitter tools and Instagram incubators they are amazing tools for change. Johnson & Johnson and Caring Crowd provide funding for a unique combination of purpose based services.  Countless individuals throughout the world are able to help combat the spread of …

Nurturing Spirits Indestructible: Women for Afghan Women’s Girls Leadership Program

Just five years ago, Sara would never have imagined she would pursue a graduate degree or even complete her high school education. She came to the United States with her family as refugees, fleeing from the seemingly endless conflict in Afghanistan. She is one of the first participants in Women for Afghan Women’s Girls Leadership Program in New York. Through the program, she was able to advocate for herself and pursue a college education—the first in her family. Currently, she is pursuing a graduate degree in social work, illustrating a tremendous cultural shift that may have been impossible a few years ago. At an event earlier this year, Sara spoke about her experience and moved us all: “Five years ago I thought I would be forced to leave school and get married. Women for Afghan Women inspired and taught me to become a leader. The life I have today is because of this organization.”   This year, Women for Afghan Women turns 15 years old. Founded by a small group of women activists six months …

Meet Tilde Holm – Girls’ Globe Blogger from Sweden

Girls’ Globe is in New York City this week during the United Nations General Assembly – bringing young women from three different continents together to participate, provide live coverage and provide their perspectives on conversations related to the Sustainable Development Goals and the rights and health of women and girls. As a student of social sciences and international relations, Tilde Holm’s passion lies within improving our world and recognizing structures within it that limit equality. Her experience in writing includes an internship as a “Junior Journalist” at the local magazine “Helsingborgs Dagblad”, and one year of blogging for Girls’ Globe. Through Girls’ Globe Tilde has also attended Women Deliver 2016, where she gained experience in live coverage, official representation and efficient writing. Since 2014, Tilde has been organizing events and meetings within the local UN Youth Community, with a main focus on women’s and girls’ rights. Tilde’s current voluntary work for the Admissions and Communications Team of Nordic Study Abroad Conference allows her to gain further experience in English, marketing and organization of large-scale events. Cover photo: …

Unity is Strength: Co-creating a Future for Women and Girls

A journey of thousand miles begins with one step! This month, September 2016, marks one year since the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by Heads of States. While global policy agreements are key, they are no longer enough in today’s world. And sure enough, all critical actors and development partners descended in New York this week to ensure that the first step of this 15-year journey not only marks the beginning but is a sure and steady step towards changing lives lives of women and girls. The Girls’ Globe team kicked off the week by attending the Social Good Summit, which is a two-day conference examining the impact of technology and new media on social good initiatives around the world. The summit which is held every year creates a platform to bring together a dynamic community of global leaders and grassroots activist to discuss practical solutions facing the global community. This year’s theme was aptly titled: “Connecting Today, Creating Tomorrow”, acknowledging that it is through everyday people and most importantly their networks, who …

Girl Up Teen Advisors on the World in 2030

When we think about young people in relation to the Agenda 2030, what often comes to mind is that they will be beneficiaries of the development goals. However, young people are proving time and time again that they are not just recipients of change but are driving change in their own right. They are active decision makers in the development process and are making huge contributions to co-create the world they want and need. Girls’ Globe bloggers had the opportunity to meet with and speak to Girl Up Teen Advisors from who are committed to girls’ and women’s empowerment and working to support the empowerment of girls BY girls. Some of the questions we explored with them include: How old they would be in 2030? How they hope the world would change by then? What do they think girls really need? Which of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) do they feel mostly strongly about? What will they be doing to advance the particular goal they feel strongly about? We hope they will not only inspire you but give you hope in the …