Thursday, January 28, 2016


Many of the graves in this cemetery in the Sierra Leone capital Freetown are for stillborn children
Two-thirds of last year's 2.6 million stillbirths were in Africa.
Half of stillbirths happen during labour as a result of preventable conditions, notably syphilis and malaria, they add.
The studies argue stillbirths are preventable through high-quality antenatal care.
The studies say there is a widespread belief that stillbirths are due to birth defects and are unavoidable.
However, it points out that this only accounts for 7.3% of stillbirths after 28 weeks.
They ranked the three countries with the highest rates of still births as Pakistan, followed by Nigeria and Chad.

A notable exception is Rwanda, which the studies point out was able to reduce the number of stillbirths.

Stillbirths in Numbers:

§ An estimated 2.6 million stillbirths occur annually
§ 98% occur in low-income and middle-income countries
§ 75% are in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia
§ More than half occur in conflict or emergency zones
§ Half of all stillbirths (1.3 million) occur during labour and birth
§ In sub-Saharan Africa, two-thirds of stillbirths are in rural areas
§ More than 40 million women give birth unattended at home each year
§ At present rates of progress, it will be 160 years until a woman in Africa will have the same chance of her baby being born alive as a woman in a high-income country.
Source: The Lancet

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Tuesday, January 12, 2016


There is a sacred space held inside
from the time when we are little.
 When we are finally ready to wake up,
as we grow up, 

we get to take a look within. 
If we are really ready to see
the beauty that is there, 

we can bring it with us.
This is a blessed journey.
 Our inner world begins a conscious journey into our outer world. Eventually over time and with astonishment…
and intimacy with the details
 there is an integration
between the two worlds. 

An experience
of coming home to ourselves.
 This is the day
we are all waiting for
even though
 we might not know that is what we have been seeking all along. We didn’t forget who we are,
and we aren’t just remembering
lost selves.
 We are becoming ourselves.
This take time. And intention.
 Once we are awakened, we feel everything, often too much.
This awakeness at times is wearisome. 

But when we use our gifts of creativity and self expression we learn to navigate the space
of so much sensation.
 Then, there is a quiet joy that begins
to emerge, to rise up.
 This quiet joy will carry us through the deepest waters. This buoyancy isn’t something we earn, but something we learn. Grace comes. Gratitude comes.
We come to life!
By Shiloh Sophia


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Friday, January 8, 2016

Suggetions of the Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality

The Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality calls on the Committee on Regional Development, as the committee responsible, to incorporate the following suggestions into its motion for a resolution: 

A. whereas ‘marginalised communities’ refers to diverse groups and individuals; whereas racism, patriarchy, economic disadvantages and other discriminatory systems contribute to creating layers of inequality and a dynamic of disempowerment for women within marginalised communities; 

B. whereas the consequences of the economic crisis and the cutbacks in public services have particularly worsened the situation of women within marginalised communities; 

1. Points out that these women face multiple discrimination, putting them at even greater risk of poverty and social exclusion; 

2. Calls for a gender perspective to be incorporated into funding arrangements; believes that gender impact assessments and gender budgeting are useful in evaluating the impact on women of funding priorities, the allocation of financial resources and specifications for funding programmes; emphasises the need for gender-disaggregated data to be systematically collected and regularly analysed; 

3. Considers it essential to include women and women’s organisations from marginalised communities in the decision-making process on the allocation, use and implementation of the funds; 

4. Stresses that all European funding opportunities for supporting marginalised communities and women should be used in an integrated way to increase synergies and complementarities between the Structural Funds and the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme; the administrations and authorities concerned at all levels should seek active cooperation among themselves; 

5. Calls for an exchange of good practices and networking amongst women in marginalised communities, while promoting women in leadership positions within these communities; 

6. Urges the use of the funds to facilitate access for women in marginalised communities to education, housing, health care, employment, childcare facilities and social services.

Suggetions of the Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality for the Committee on Regional Development on cohesion policy and marginalised communities
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