News / USA

Clinton Announces Initiatives to Benefit Women

Multimedia

Audio

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has outlined several new initiatives to empower women around the world, through technology training, public-private partnerships and grants, and a planned entrepreneurship summit specifically for women.

The morning after a major entrepreneurship conference wrapped in Washington, Clinton spoke at a breakfast for women from around the world who attended that summit.

Clinton, one of the world's most powerful women, told the story of a woman she once met at a craft market in Nepal.  The secretary said the woman had not been allowed to leave her home after her marriage, until her husband was injured and could no longer earn a living.  With the family in a dire situation, the woman had to ask her husband and mother-in-law for permission to sell the tapestries and crafts she could produce.

"As a result of her talent and her skill, she now employed two other weavers, and she now is sending her children to school, and they had added on to their home.  And I said, 'So what do your husband and your mother-in-law think now?' She said, 'They think it's good.'"

Clinton said the United States is making women a focus of its foreign-policy agenda.  The goal is to change attitudes about women, she said, and to address the challenges they face.  

With that in mind, she outlined several new initiatives aimed at empowering women.  One program provides mentoring and technology training to women in the Middle East and North Africa.  There is a planned women's entrepreneurship summit in Japan.  And there are public-private grants to invest in economic empowerment, combat violence against women and improve access to education and health care.

The major announcement was the launch of the "Secretary's Innovation Award for Women's and Girls' Empowerment."  Up to $500,000 each will go to two applicants who can offer pioneering solutions to empower the world's women and girls - politically, economically and socially.

"We hope to receive entries that describe how specific innovations have  improved the lives of women and girls, and proposals for how they can be scaled up and applied more broadly," Clinton added.  

The awards are funded by the Rockefeller Foundation.  Judith Rodin of the Rockefeller Foundation said finding innovative ideas and expanding them to a large scale has proven to be hugely effective.  She stressed that gender inequality needs to be tackled urgently.

"Women still do two-thirds of all the work in the world, but earn only about five percent of the income," said Rodin.  "They harvest 90 percent of the world's food, yet they own only one percent of the world's land.  And women are three times as likely as men to work in informal economies, and therefore abuse, sex trafficking and the absence of legal rights and protections for women are still unacceptably commonplace in so many places around the world."

Rodin said the first two awards will be given out this year.  More information about the submission and selection process can be found on the State Department's Web site, on its Office of Global Women's Issues page.

The State Department says programs that include men and boys also are eligible for the awards program, because educating men can be an important part of empowering women and girls.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

1855 Slave Brochure Starkly Details Sale of Black Americans

Document lists entire families that were up for sale in New Orleans, offering graphic insight into the slavery trade More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs