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“Cities for girls and young women = cities for all” High-level panel at the European Development Days 2018

18 May 2018

PLATFORMA/CEMR, Plan International, UN HABITAT, and United Cities and Local Governments–Africa are organising a High-level panel at the European Development Days 2018 on 6 June at 11.30 in Brussels.

Each month, 5 million people are added to the cities of the developing world, and it is estimated that by 2030, approximately 700 million girls will live in urban areas[1].  Adolescent girls around the world share similar experiences of insecurity, sexual harassment, and feelings of exclusion while at the same time they envision future cities that are well-lit, well-planned, well-maintained, and where they are given space to participate.

For its twelfth edition, the European Development Days 2018 (EDD) will aim at bringing together the European Union’s commitment to gender equality and women’s empowerment with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Speakers of the High-level panel “Cities for girls and young women = cities for all” will focus on the importance of strengthening girls’ and young women’s representation and voices in urban spaces as a way of implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (specifically 11 and 5) and the New Urban Agenda.

The speakers are:

  • Celestine Ketcha Courtes, President of the network of local elected women of Africa (REFELA), Mayor of Bangangté, United Cities and Local Governments-Africa
  • Anne-Birgitte Albrectsen, Chief Executive Officer, Plan International
  • Maimunah Mohd Sharif, UN-Habitat Executive Director and UN Undersecretary-General
  • Frederic Vallier, Secretary General, Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR)
  • Lais Rocha Leao, EDD Young Leader, Brazil
  • Moderated by Vince Chadwick, Brussels Correspondent for Devex

Specifically, the session will explore challenges, best practices and untapped potential of empowering girls and young women to build safe, accountable, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable cities. Panelists will recall the need to pay specific attention to vulnerable groups in public space, to engage boys and girls, women and men, in local decision-making; and to ensure a gender-sensitive, child-friendly, and child/youth participation implementation approach at all levels.

The recommendations from this session will inform upcoming political processes at UN level (UN HLPF session that will review SDG11), EU level (European Development Consensus & GAP), and local level (CEMR Bilbao Conference).

 For more information:

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Register to the EDD before 25 May !

[1] UNFPA estimates that by 2030, 5 billion people worldwide will be living in towns and cities. In a separate paper, UNICEF estimates that by 2030, girls will comprise around 14% of the world’s population.