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The world hates women
After watching the video I felt down, very low thinking women are not treated well since centuries. Men have been ruling their identity, existence and integrity. The life of women had been harder and the case have taken its plight in case of various insurgency. but may the world understand it now and may these shocking data never increase.

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Applications are now closed, GACC Safe Sites will be notified in October!

Did you miss this round? Come back in December when applications open again!

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Just imagine, if you had just a day to live, one last day on earth, then how would you spend those 24 hours? I wonder what I would do! There would be so much to do that could not be fulfilled in a day. I would either spend all the money that I have feeding the poor, or just would eat whatever I want to, without the fear of weight-gain; I would be with my family and spend those precious hours with never-ending smiles, or I would marry my beloved and be with him till my last second on this earth; I would hug all my friends around, ask for forgiveness and forgive those with whom I have disputes, bid them farewell and enjoy the last supper, or I would leave everything aside, just pray to god and wait for the world to end. What would you do? It’s so hard to decide when there is not much time, when every minute is so important, not to finish the task that you are assigned or to attend any business meetings and job interviews but to spent it for yourself, to fulfill one’s spiritual happiness and peace.

Every day we are chasing each other in this materialistic world to gain the materialistic achievements, either to impress others or for one’s materialistic satisfaction. We work so hard and run after those things that make us satisfied but not happy. Sometimes I think we have forgotten the actual feeling of happiness and peace. Nowadays one becomes happy by shutting others down; one remains at peace when other degrades. Nowadays we talk more but listen to the least to reply the worst. With all this competition, we have made our world a system, our body a machine and our materialistic passion as a fuel.

No wonder we have made compromises in numerous steps of our lives, or others might have compromised for us as well in numerous ways. But I am sure we can count those moments when we felt the actual happiness and peace, or some might have never got this chance yet. It’s always about survival of the fittest and existence of the brightest, and one should move on.

Ultimately the race stops one day and we leave this earth as a spirit either with regrets or with spiritual satisfaction. Which one would you be? None knows if heaven or hell really exists but we see and feel both while we are still alive. So here is my question again, if you had just a day to live, one last day on earth, then how would you spend those 24 hours? The best would be to live every day like it’s our last day, and then may be earth will be a better place that would never end.

By

Isha Karmacharya

Nepal

Categories: Living Positive, Other
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Sex ans sexual acts are filled with various myths which has been giving some scary and untrue message to the world.this has been responsible for sex related fear and perceptions of the people around the globe. Though myths changes with the place we dwell but each and every part of the world has one or the other myths associated with following.
1. You can tell by looking if you or someone else has an STD / I would know if I had an STD.
2. If I needed to get tested for STDs, my doctor would test me.
3. If I get an STD, including HIV, there’s nothing I can do about it.
4. If he pulls out, I won’t get pregnant or an STD.
5. STD testing is for cheaters & players.
6. Sex in a hot tub / sex standing up / jumping up and down /douching after sex… will prevent STDs, including HIV, and/or pregnancy.
7. Two condoms are better than one.
8.There’s a cure for HIV/AIDS.
9. Oral sex and anal sex are “safe” sex–or not sex at all.
10. If I use birth control, I don’t need to worry about STDs.

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Check out the 2014 Youth ShowOUT! The campaign will engage and mobilize young voters across the country through on the ground organizing, social media activism, and online actions at youthshowout.org.  Advocates for Youth (Advocates), Feminist Majority Foundation (FMF), and Planned Parenthood Generation (PPGen), a project of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, are joining forces for this exciting new national civic engagement campaign.

In 2014, young voters will do more than just turn out–they will ShowOUT! Youth leaders are educating their peers, registering voters, participating in voter pledge drives, volunteering, and more. Young people are at the helm of lasting change in our country. They are taking charge and becoming a part of the political process.

Young people are an essential component of the rising electorate. Every day, nearly 12,000 young people turn 18 years old and become eligible to vote. At Advocates for Youth we know firsthand the power of young people is undeniable. There are tens of thousands of youth activists and leaders who are actively reshaping their communities and changing what politics looks like in this country. We have a responsibility to work alongside these young people as they lead us to new solutions and lasting change.

Visit Youth ShowOUT, sign the pledge, and share with friends!

Categories: Young People
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Climate change

Rising temperature, melting ice and growing ocean left no one not to be aware of climate change. But Climate changes definitely not only the environmental issues but is growing its scope of effects as increasing in temporal dimension. Rise in the sea level more than 40 nm and significant retreat of Arctic sea ice and nearly all continental glaciers, having twelve warmest years in last thirteen years with the record of 1.8-4 degree Celsius rise in the temperature are some facts of the latest climate change scenario. This environmental issue is the reproductive issue since its directly and indirectly leads to arise of new personal, social, and political problem.

Climate change refers to any change in climate over time, whether due to natural variability or as a result of human activity. It can also be regarded as a change of climate which is attributed directly or indirectly to human activity that alters the composition of the global atmosphere and which is in addition to natural climate variability observed over comparable time periods. There are many impacts of climate change on human kind. One of the one is social and human consequences of climate change. Migration of peoples from more affected area to non-affected area will definitely affects the eco system. It may leads to the unmanaged urbanization and change in land use or says improper land use according to the capability of soil. As here we are talking about the change in the whole environment, we can’t even imagine its consequences on whole living and non-living things of earths.

Climate change and health issues…

Obviously, there are the issues of health while we discuss about the change in the environment. Men and women suffer from different negative health consequences following extreme events of climate change such as floods, windstorms; droughts etc… according to the abnormalities in the environment due to climate change actions, there may have specific direct and indirect consequences to the human health. Everyone will be affected by these changes, but not equally. Vulnerability to climate change will be determined by a community or individual’s ability to adapt.. From many study it has been seen that, effects of climate change has more effect on women rather than men in the countries having gender gap. Many women around the world must adapt their lives to a changing climate. Increases in extreme weather conditions droughts, storms, and floods are already altering economies, economic development, and patterns of human migration, and are likely to be among the biggest global health threats this century.
Climate Change induced heath issues and women

So, why women are more vulnerable towards the effects of climate change induced disasters? There may be various answers from various perspectives. Poverty can be one reason because they are economically dependent on men and also the lack of proper education. These two elements always take them back in case of ideas, techniques and also the resource collection for the adaptation. Children can also be the reason of more vulnerability of women. As like men they can’t migrate but likely to remain home to care for children and elderly or sick family members. Climate change has a significant impact on securing household water, food, and fuel—activities that usually are the responsibility of women and girls. In times of drought and erratic rainfall, women and girls must walk farther and spend more of their time collecting water and fuel. Girls may have to drop out of school to help their mothers with these tasks, continuing the cycle of poverty and inequity. Changing climates also affect the health of crops and livestock, and women, who are often responsible for producing the food eaten at home, must work harder for less food.

Lack of independence and decision making power are constrain of women’s ability to adapt to climate change. Women often have limited or no control over family finances and assets. In many communities, women are underrepresented in community politics, and thus have little influence over community strategies for adapting and over policies that support women’s rights and priorities. Without participation by women, programs to replace traditional crops with those better suited to the changing environment might focus only on the needs of men’s fields and not address the problems women face with household gardens.

Effects on women…

Whenever there are the issues of women’s health, Sexual health and reproductive health and right comes along with it. SRHR issues are more related to women because they are more sensitive towards these issues and regarding the SRHR issues induced as the result of climate change and it effects, due to our socio-economic condition , metal and physical condition of women; they are more vulnerable towards climate change’s effects.
In the developing countries like Nepal, women have more responsibility towards family work, agricultural work and other side they are less educated. So this scenario leads to the condition that, women have to fight hard to adapt her and her family towards the effects of climate change but lack of knowledge makes her path more difficult. In this condition, effect of adaptation obviously have effect on her physical and mental condition and ultimately towards her sexual and reproductive health as well.

SRHR issues…..

Biological structure of the female body is also more sensitive making women more vulnerable towards cc induced disasters and conditions. Many reports shows that flood waters mixed with waste and faecal matter entered the vagina and urethra of women and adolescent girls and increased the risk of Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs). UTIs are known to be lower among males than females as the urethra is longer among males so bacteria has to travel longer distance to reach bladder. According to one case study in India, there were reports of breast growth and high fever among women who lost their breast-fed infants during the 2004 tsunami. In Thiland, some adolescent girls and women of reproductive age group reported that their mensuration stopped suddenly after tsunami in 2004 due to mental shock and resumed only after a few/several month. Social norms glorifying motherhood also lead to specific kinds of SRHR issues in disaster contexts. Like when women lose their children in the disaster, there is self-inflicted and pressure to women to re-conceive in any means. Such pressure persists even if it is not safe regarding age and health condition of women.

In another scenario of post disaster situation due to climate change and global warming, many rehabilitation centers for disaster victims may have been established. As people of various types lives there together, sexual violence, harassment, rape and many gender based violence cases are reported to be high which has induced the cases of many femicide and suicide . Loss of the local resources, medicine, medical staffs and infrastructure to provide sexual and reproductive health is also the major issues that have to be faced due to disasters. There are many such direct and indirect issues of SRHR as well during disasters and condition arises by climate change. Each and every issue further relates and helps to arise or say regenerate the many others SRHR issues. Mainly in case of developing countries, issues of SRHR during disasters had created many and among them as well the condition of women are more vulnerable.

Climate change induced disasters on human have its own effect which is some time devastating and what may be the situation, when there is more casualties due to social discrepancy, health and gender issues .We cannot stop the disasters but we can stop these social discrepancy, SRHR issues, mental torture, suicide and many more by employing proper education, security, awareness, advocacy, facilities etc… Issues of climate change are more than enough, so let’s be aware not to increment any other on the list.

Categories: Sexual Health
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I’ve been watching the story unfold and the events that have taken place in Ferguson have made it evident that black and brown bodies have no worth in America. I’ve gone from apathy, to deep sadness, and now I am angry. I am fed up. I am sick and tired of hearing another name, another victim of police brutality or a racially charged murder. I am tired of fearing for my little brother’s life.

The people who are supposed to be protecting our young black and brown youth are instead, murdering them. Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Ezell Ford. Rekia Boyd, Trayvon Martin, Oscar Grant, John Crawford, Kimani Gray, and the names unfortunately go on.

My heart breaks for the people of Ferguson. I am disgusted by the war zone that was created by the police. I’m saddened by the blatant disregard for our babies. (Trigger Warning) I saw a photo of a young black girl being maced and I felt sick to my stomach. Michael Brown was only 18. Unarmed, but Black. Eric Garner said, as he gasped for air, “I can’t breathe.” Unarmed, but Black, when white suspects of greater offenses have been escorted into police vehicles. 

As I’ve heard many say, the police need to be held accountable for their actions. We need to have more open and honest dialogues about these incidents with our youth, let them know they’re loved. Black and brown bodies are precious.

Categories: Racism
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On June 30, 2014, Advocates for Youth staff stood outside the Supreme Court fighting for reproductive justice, alongside young people who are empowered, informed, and not going to give up their rights without a fight. The Burwell v. Hobby Lobby ruling allows some privately owned, “closely held” for-profit corporations to dictate the health coverage of their employees. Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Woods Products challenged the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptive coverage requirement, alleging that it violates their companies’ religious rights, all the while disregarding their employee’s religious freedom and right to privacy and basic health services. In response to the Hobby Lobby ruling, Congress introduced the “Protect Women’s Health from Corporate Interference Act” (aka “Not My Boss’ Business Act”). The bill was intended to protect coverage of health services from employers’ religious beliefs, but was four votes short on moving forward in the Senate.

With the recent rulings firmly standing, it is important to evaluate the imbalanced impact they will have on young people. The recent Supreme Court ruling disproportionately impacts young women: 3.2 million teenage women use contraceptives and the IUD is more likely to be used by women aged 20-24 than any other age group.

The Hobby Lobby decision is fundamentally about abortion and the first amendment. Hobby Lobby wanted to exclude four specific brands of contraception from its insurance plan because they believed them to be abortifacients. As stated in the brief filed by a group of medical associations, none of these four methods of contraception are abortion. Hobby Lobby may believe that some contraceptives are abortifacients, but the courts should be obligated to rule based on facts, not a business’ erroneous beliefs.

The Supreme Court ruling addressed the Affordable Care Act contraception mandate for for-profit businesses. Now, no “closely held company” can be required to cover any method of contraception conflicting with their religion. This ruling only applies to contraceptive coverage and no other health services.

The Hobby Lobby decision will remain the governing policy on contraception coverage until Congress acts to reverse the decision through legislation. With the failure of the “Not My Boss’s Business Act” in the Senate, that seems like an impossible lift during the 113th Congress. However, as a constituent you have the right to make your voice heard about these issues. Contact your Representative and Senators today and encourage them to support justice for young people.

Young people are at the forefront of the reproductive rights, health and justice movement. We need to stand with them against these decisions that disproportionately put their health and well-being at risk. Advocates for Youth was proud to stand with and among them on June 30th and we will continue to stand with them to support their sexual and reproductive health needs and rights.

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Looking through the endless list of romance films, you’re sure to find a rather broad variety. Rom-com? Duh.  Drama? Obviously.  Quirky romance?  Done, done and done.  The list of possible subgenres is far from shocking.  On top of that, what’s even less surprising in most of these films is the fact that the two lovebirds are almost always straight.

Sure, there may be a LGBTQ character or couple in the film, but they’re almost always a secondary character, and even more importantly, they are usually present as some sort of comedic relief.  That’s not to say that these characters do not aid to the film’s mission— in fact, many of them become audience favorites.  There is no question, however, that it is a rarity for these characters to be central to the film’s love-centric storyline.

In the film “Tomorrow,” directed by Leandro Tadashi on behalf of the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, the serious reality of finding oneself and what we truly want, regardless of sexuality, is brought to light.  This win for the LGBTQ community succeeds in the fact that a film has been made where the gay characters are not offering comedic backup, but instead, are real people that viewers can identify with.  There aren’t ridiculous jokes, but instead raw emotions.  In the film, you feel for Clark when he’s asked to be a wingman by Trevor.  You can feel the awkward tension.  You can see the pain in Clark’s eyes right before he covers it up and promises to help his friend out in various scenes.  Stereotypical flamboyancy is out and real emotions are in.

It’s no secret that the road to acceptance is no easy feat.  The contrast in “Tomorrow” over Clark’s acceptance and Trevor’s confusion is blatantly on display.  Through the use of Sarah, the typically pretty girl who is essentially stuck between the two, the film highlights the boys’ different stages of acceptance.  While Clark so easily brushes Sarah’s advances aside, it’s clear that he has internalized the fact that he is gay, regardless of the fact that he hasn’t let all of his friends know.  Trevor, on the other hand, is oh so eager to chase after the girl he “should” want to reassure himself that he isn’t actually gay.  This use of a third character is so vital in showing the different stages of acceptance that without Sarah’s presence, it would be so much harder for the audience to really pull for Clark to make something happen with Trevor.

Showcasing serious protagonists rather than the typical comedic gay character has allowed audiences of “Tomorrow” an opportunity to finally see the struggles that come with accepting one’s sexuality.  Just because you feel for the character who has already accepted who he is, doesn’t make the challenge any easier for the character who hasn’t reached that point yet.  The reality of acceptance isn’t an easy step, but then again, there’s always hope for tomorrow.

The film will be showcased in film festivals in late 2014. It is directed by a gay student director, Leandro Tadashi. He was born and raised in Brazil and holds a bachelor’s degree in film from a Sao Paulo university. Tadashi has just finished his sixth and final semester of the master’s program at the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts.  Being half-Brazilian and half-Japanese, the theme of identity has been central in Tadashi’s work both in Brazil and at USC.

“Tomorrow” is Tadashi’s sixth short film as a director.  He has also served as a production designer on over 10 short films, designed two TV show sets and recently received a grant from the Brazilian government to direct another short film in Brazil this summer.

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As the opportunity for governments and others to draw attention to key issues related to youth worldwide; UN general assembly in 1999, designated 12th August as the International Youth Day (IYD). UNESCO also defined IYD as the annual celebration of the role of young women and men as essential partners in change, as well as an opportunity to raise awareness of the challenges and hardships facing the world’s youth. It’s not only the day to deal with the youth issues, but is certainly the day to draw the attentions of the world towards the youth’s concerns.
Among various issues of youths on human rights, poverty, hunger, education, environment, health, HIV/AIDS, violence, wars, conflict, development, politics, social responsibilities, advocacy, Diplomacy etc… IYD 2014 has focused on the mental health issues of youth and titled it as the “International Youth Day 2014-Mental Health Matters”. Mental health issues are often not talked about or stigmatized, leaving them untreated and putting young people at risk. So IYD can not only for celebrating the amazing power of youths but also the important opportunity to highlight the challenges among youths.

Although youth are generally considered a healthy age group, 20 percent experience some form of mental-health condition Mental-health conditions, which include behavioral and mental-health problems e.g. depression, anxiety disorders (including post-traumatic stress disorder), and disruptive behavioral disorders (such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, mood disturbances, substance use, suicidal behavior, and aggressive/disruptive behavior) are the leading causes of adjustment problems in adolescents and young people worldwide. Given the numerous health issues affecting people in developing and low resource countries, the issue of mental health has often been considered a lower priority; yet even high-income countries have similarly de-prioritized mental health and dedicated far fewer resources to mental than to physical health. The vast majority of countries allocate less than 1 per cent of their health budgets to mental health Mental-health conditions have a significant impact on the development of over a billion youth and their social and economic integration, including employability.
Recent report of UN on Mental illness among youth has found that
 Mental health conditions are prevalent among young people
 There is considerable burden and disability associated with mental-health conditions, particularly among those for whom the problem start during youth
 Mental-health conditions have a significant impact on youth development and social and economic integration.
 Traumatic experiences, including adverse childhood events (e.g., the death of a parent, abuse, being a refugee) affect youth worldwide, but are particularly common in post-conflict or disaster settings.
 Certain youth are at particular risk of mental health conditions
 Stigma is a considerable barrier to mental health service delivery, particularly among young people.
 A public-health approach to the prevention of behavioral and mental health conditions is instrumental in addressing this issue at a global level
In Hong Kong alone, 1 in 3 people are suffering from some sort of mental disorder according to a SCMP (a local newspaper) article dated 2012. Around 200,000 people in Hong Kong are estimated to have a severe mental illness and suicide rates gas become the leading cause of death among youth aged 15 to 24 according to Centre for Suicide Research and Prevention. Based on these statistics alone, you can conclude one thing: Mental illness is real.
But the stigma continues. A lot of people think that mental illness is something that people who deal with it just to exaggerate. For instance, take depression as an example, while I admit that anyone can feel sad or lonely, I want to correct the misconception: depression is not about feeling sad all the time, depression is the suppression of feelings of sadness, anger or even happiness that causes people to feel ‘down’. Merely having a bad day or feeling lonely does not automatically make someone depressed. So many of us, put depression on our heads like we actually understand its core. Even people who actually suffer from it don’t understand it wholeheartedly.
Treatments for mental illness are not as widespread as that physical illness. Treatment is difficult to find, it’s slow, it can come back and it’s expensive. Stigma continues. Social stigma has caused people to look down on those with mental illness and it becomes a chain reaction where perceived stigma happens to the victims and treatment and recover is prolonged.
Followings are the recommendations made by the report of UN:
 More defined policies and programmes
 Efforts are needed to overcome stigma
 Improved surveillance and programme monitoring and evaluation
 Additional research is needed
First we have to understand that the sadness alone is not the depression that leads to mental illness. But this may surely leas up to that so we can make these people feel that they are not alone and make them speak up and ask for help and lastly we have to make them feel of respect. It will increase their self-confidence although it’s certain that it’s a tough work dealing with them.
The fact that this year’s theme is mental health shows the realness of the situation among the youth. Let’s end mental health stigma not only for the youth but for every warrior that have fought, are fighting and will be fighting mental illness. These people are trying to find them, let’s help them look for themselves so they can find the road to recovery.

TOP TEN SLOGANS FOR IYD-2014
1) Youth cannot know how age thinks and feels. But old men are guilty if they forget what it was to be young. – J.K Rowling
2) You are only young once, and if you work it right, once is enough. – Joe E. Lewis
3) Youth is the best time to be rich, and the best time to be poor. – Euripides
4) Young people need models, not critics. – John Wooden
5) You’re only young once, but you can be immature forever ― Germaine Greer
6) Middle age is youth without levity, and age without decay. – Doris Day
7) If I have known much trouble in my youth, I have also known much joy. – Clara Schumann
8) An inordinate passion for pleasure is the secret of remaining young. – Oscar Wilde
9) Time misspent in youth is sometimes the entire freedom one ever has. – Anita Brookner
10) Youth is wasted on the young. – George Bernard Shaw

Categories: Young People