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World Refugee Day: 60 Million Displaced

We mark World Refugee Day with the stark reality that nearly 60 million people around the world are living in displacement, having been forced by violence or conflict to flee their homes. We asked five former refugees for their thoughts. 

tags: Children

Giving Birth When the Health Center Has Been Washed Away

What happens if you’re pregnant and start hemorrhaging, but the health care center has been destroyed? In a recent 3-day training of trainers, the WRC addressed exactly this question. 

Cooking Dinner, Risking Rape

For refugee women, cooking dinner can be an all-day affair – and a dangerous one. The WRC's decade of work on Safe Access to Fuel and Energy (SAFE) recently recieved a Green Star Award.

Adolescent Girls as Humanitarian Partners

For humanitarians to follow through on our promises to empower girls, they must become partners in the humanitarian process. This is what that looks like.

Chance of Citizenship Also Destroyed in Nepal

A gender-discriminatory nationality law means that thousands of Nepali children born after the earthquake may be unable to claim citizenship. This puts them at risk of marginalization, decreased education and healthcare, and poverty.

Local Civil Society Consulted at HQ, Less So in the Field

Local organizations are perfectly placed to help crisis-affected communities. Their work merits attention--as well as funding and leadership roles--at the field level. 

Sexual and reproductive health: An essential element of disaster preparedness and response

When Tropical Cyclone Pam slammed into Vanuatu, it was a grim reminder that sexual and reproductive health must be a mainstay of disaster risk reduction plans. Trust.org.

Invisible Women Must be Included: WRC at CSW59/Beijing+20

The 2015 Commission on the Status of Women demonstrated great strides since the Beijing Platform for Action was adopted. Here are some of the most important issues.

A missed opportunity for empowerment: treating refugee girls as victims

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama just announced Let Girls Learn, which will consolidate efforts by the U.S. government to educate and empower girls abroad. I think the Obamas are on the right track and I look forward to tracking the success of this initiative. In the humanitarian community, we’ve been struggling with the best way to give girls tools and opportunities.

Despite the fact that adolescent girls typically have begun to take on adult responsibilities – indeed some of them already are mothers themselves – they often lack the knowledge, skills and networks to help them navigate the world. Gender inequity becomes more pronounced in adolescence. Girls are less likely than boys to attend secondary school and are far more likely to be socially isolated.

In conflict and disaster, when adolescent girls are forced to flee their homes, sometimes without their families, their vulnerability significantly increases. They lack the life experience to help them handle forced displacement at the same time they are targeted for sexual and gender-based violence at much higher rates.

Read more on Trust.org.

Five Years After the Haiti Earthquake, Let’s Prepare for the Next Disaster Before It Strikes

On January 12, 2010, a massive earthquake struck Haiti, killing more than 200,000 people and rendering almost 2 million homeless. Five years later, the country is still struggling to rebuild. Since then, natural disasters have continued, affecting millions more people around the world. Untold thousands have died, been injured or lost their livelihoods as a result.

Women and girls are particularly vulnerable in disasters. If that is to ever change, steps must be taken before disaster strikes to address the particular needs of women and girls to ensure that they not only survive but maintain their dignity while recovering and rebuilding their lives.

tags: Haiti

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