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WUCWO participates in CSW 68 at the UN in New York with a side event on the prevention and elimination of violence and discrimination against women in Africa

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The President General of the World Union of Catholic Women's Organisations (WUCWO), Mónica Santamarina, was in New York at the end of March for the 68th Session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW 68), where she participated in various events and meetings, together with Barbara Dowding, Regional Vice-President for North America, and Maribeth Stewart, WUCWO International Representative at the United Nations, New York. Among the various activities, WUCWO organised, with its Women's World Observatory (WWO), a side event sponsored by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation:

“Working to end violence against women".

IN-VISIBLES NO MORE. "African women: Change makers'voices and images".

Mónica Santamarina, Maribeth Stewart and Barbara Dowding's first stop was at an event organised by the Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the UN and Caritas International on 19 March. The event focused on the role of religious leaders and organisations promoting women's leadership and was an opportunity for WUCWO members to gather ideas and practices that might help in future projects and initiatives.

The WUCWO representatives also had the opportunity to meet, on 20 March, Mgr Gabriele Giordano Caccia, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations and other International Organisations, to present to him the projects developed by WUCWO and its WWO. On the same day, they met Sister Hortensia del Villar SAC of the Hilton Foundation as well as different representatives of the Knights of Peter Claver Ladies Auxiliary, a WUCWO member organisation in the United States.

21 March was the day of the WUCWO side event, "Working to end violence against women". Maribeth Stewart acted as moderator throughout, introducing Mónica Santamarina ; Katie Boller Gosewisch, Executive Director of the Alliance to End Human Trafficking; Lia Beltrami, director and producer of the documentary "In-visibles" and Sister Hortensia del Villar of the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation's Catholic Sisters Initiative.

The WUCWO President General explained the organisation's journey over the past few years, presenting the WWO and its first results, followed by a screening of the documentary "In-visibles". Each panelist shared valuable insights and perspectives, highlighting the importance of awareness raising, sharing best practices, mutual support and networking among women, and the need for funding to carry out effective initiatives. The event concluded with a question and answer session, where participants had the opportunity to interact with the panellists.

In her closing remarks, Mónica Santamarina thanked the sponsors, panelists and attendees for their participation and commitment in the fight against violence and discrimination against women and invited them to participate in the "#In-visibleNoMore" campaign and become an Ambassador for the Invisible. The event concluded with the knowledge that an important space had been provided for the exchange of ideas and the creation of collaborative links in the search for solutions to end violence and discrimination against women around the world.

About CSW 68

The annual Commission on the Status of Women (CSW),is the UN’s largest annual gathering on gender equality and women’s empowerment. This year, at the 68th session, the priority theme was: “Accelerating the achievement of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls by addressing poverty and strengthening institutions and financing with a gender perspective”.