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Yesterday, we, the youth gender working group organized an action to push for the passage of a draft decision  that would make monumental steps forward in ensuring gender-sensitive climate change policies and increased participation of women in United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) negotiations.

In our action, we created a circle of alternating men and women, balancing cups of water symbolizing healthy globes. The slogan for the action was: “GENDER BALANCE: The world is in ALL of our hands.”

During the session, Member States shared positive remarks …

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A year ago, I attended the UN meeting on Climate Change (COP17) in Durban hosted by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).  Young leaders from the Philippines, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Nigeria and the United States came together to advocate for the prioritization of young people’s sexual and reproductive and rights in the climate change negotiations.

However, the UNFCCC disappointedly failed to adequately discuss education of girls and boys, empowerment of women, and demand for voluntary family planning, and access to comprehensive, youth-friendly sexual and reproductive health …

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Considering the months of preparation prior to the actual event of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development: you know, the incalculable hours, days, months activists from fields spanning climate change, women’s rights, poverty alleviation and even religious institutions spent planning, deciding. The buzz of excitement from the lucky sods who could afford to attend the conference; the plastered smiles on faces of the unfortunates, like me, who could not attend due to “extenuating circumstances” and “previous engagement” one would think, or at the very least, have hoped that …