Archive for August 11th, 2014


Why Do the Women Remain Invisible, in Spite of Their Presence?

By Venge Nyirongo*, UN Women – The Hunger Games, the famous multimedia franchise, is not far from the truth. It’s no myth that being food-secure is essential for human dignity and to ensure livelihoods and wellbeing.

Mpondo woman in South Africa | Uploaded by Mangomania | Wikimedia Coomms

Mpondo woman in South Africa | Uploaded by Mangomania | Wikimedia Commons

Yet about 842 million people today live in chronic hunger across the world. Although on the decline, the numbers of the undernourished also continues to remain exorbitantly high. Of these, women and girls remain most affected.

The failure to ensure women’s access to nutritious food has an impact on nutrition for children under five years of age, leading to the loss of lives and cognitive or developmental limitations for those who survive. In many cases, the food-insecure and hungry continue to suffer in silence without a voice to appeal for more equality and fairness in the distribution of resources that would alleviate their plight.

Without a doubt, women are key to food security. Globally, women comprise about 43 percent of the agricultural labour force. Their dedication to both food and cash crops is high, although the returns realized from the market favor men more than women.

The African Development Bank estimates that 90 percent of Africa’s food is produced by women in spite of the fact that few women hold titles to the land they work. Because of this, rural women’s contribution to Africa’s agriculture is important for the persistence and success of their families, communities and local and national economies, and to poverty reduction and sustainable development.


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Gaza Diary: Life Under Israeli Assault

Human Wrongs Watch 

A resident of Gaza shares his experience under Israeli bombardment: what it feels like in those 10 seconds between the launch of a missile and the explosion upon impact; and what it is like to watch the landmarks of a life’s worth of memories reduced to rubble before your eyes.

Gaza City, 7 August 2014 (IRIN)* – There are about 10 seconds, or at least that is what it feels like, between the launching of the missile and the devastating crash of the explosion. They are the darkest moments of my life. As the sound of the falling missile grows, my stomach lurches, I close my eyes and think of my family. The tape of my life flashes before my eyes as we wait to find out if this is the end.

Photo from IRIN

Photo from IRIN

Then the explosion – sometimes a distant crack, others a devastating boom. I breathe a sigh of relief; all the while knowing it is some other family’s turn to have their lives destroyed. Yet the reprieve is only ever temporary; these moments have been repeated dozens of times every night for the past month as Israel has pounded Gaza, the small Palestinian enclave I call home.

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