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Africa Press Releases South Africa

Water for Good joins One For All, a global alliance fighting the water crisis

DENVER and INDIANAPOLIS and THE HAGUE, the Netherlands, March 08, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — One For All, an alliance of global organizations championing collaborative methods to support water justice issues across the world, is pleased to welcome its newest member, Water for Good, a faith-based nonprofit that promotes clean, lasting water for every person in the Central African Republic (CAR), to the alliance. Water for Good joins alliance co-founders IRC and Water For People in their work to accomplish UN Sustainable Development Goal 6: water and sanitation for all by 2030.

“In a sector that has been too fragmented for too long, the alliance is based on our lived experience, and continued commitment, to effective collective action that drives change and impact. It’s a shared vision of independent and interdependent organizations striving collaboratively towards what works and how to achieve it, supporting and learning from each other and our network of local and national partners in the fifteen countries where we work around the world,” said Patrick Moriarty, CEO, IRC.

Water for Good has long inspired the global WASH sector to think big even in fragile states including the CAR, with a commitment to working with local, permanent institutions to create sustainable services at scale.

“We recognize that the current way of doing things in the sector needs to shift to achieve universal and sustainable WASH services. This requires collaborative planning and execution which is exactly how the alliance is committed to working,” said Jon Allen, CEO, Water for Good.

The All Systems Connect International Symposium 2023 in May is the first collaborative expression of the alliance. It’s designed to bring together changemakers from health, climate, social justice and water, and sanitation and hygiene. This opportunity will connect people with ideas and systems with solutions to achieve justice for all. The Symposium will enable delegates to connect with purpose, work on collective solutions and strengthen their capabilities as systems leaders.

No single organization is going to end the water crisis or achieve SDG 6 on their own. We truly believe that our impact as a collective is greater in alliance than the sum of the individual parts,” Sarah Bramley, Chief Impact Officer, Water For People.

Founded in 2020, One For All partners with champions in health, climate, economic development, education and social justice to encourage sustainable economic growth and address the social justice inequities that come from a lack of access to safe water and sanitation. Additionally, the alliance works with local, regional and national governments to implement climate resilient system-strengthening strategies to meet UN SDG 6.

About One For All

One For All is an alliance of global organizations led by IRC, Water For People and Water for Good to champion collaborative methods to support water, sanitation and hygiene justice issues across the world. Members work with local, regional and national governments to implement climate resilient system-strengthening strategies. They also partner with champions in health, climate, economic development, education and social justice to encourage sustainable economic growth and address the social justice inequities that come from a lack of access to safe water and sanitation. Alliance members hold themselves accountable to support governments to meet the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 6, water and sanitation for all, by 2030. The actions of one—a person, a community, an organization—are in support of all.

For more information: Hope Voelkel, hvoelkel@waterforpeople.org

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Africa Asean MENA Pakistan Press Releases South Africa

LeddarTech Showcasing Its Award-Winning Sensor Fusion and Perception Software and High-Performance Products That Enable ADAS and AD at Tech.AD Berlin on March 26-28, 2023

LeddarTech’s award-winning LeddarVision solution

LeddarVision technology recognized at Tech.AD USA and CES 2023

QUEBEC CITY, March 08, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — LeddarTech®, a global leader in providing the most flexible, robust and accurate ADAS and AD software technology, is pleased to announce its participation at Automotive Tech.AD Berlin at the Titanic Chaussee Hotel Berlin. LeddarTech is a Competence Partner of Tech.AD and will exhibit its technology; Pierre Olivier, CTO of LeddarTech, will be an event presenter.

LeddarTech’s LeddarVision Showcase (Booth # 6)

LeddarVision™ is a high-performance, low-cost, hardware-agnostic low-level sensor fusion and perception solution for automotive and off-road industrial ADAS and AD applications.

Experience: The Award-Winning LeddarVision Interactive Dashboard Demonstration

This dashboard enables delegates to witness the LeddarVision software’s extraordinarily high performance at various levels of autonomy in various scenarios, such as extreme weather conditions.

Pre-arrange a meeting for product demonstrations, media and industry analyst interviews or investor discussions.

Witness the European unveiling of LeddarTech’s newest products!

The LeddarVision Front-View (LVF) family of automotive software products addresses the challenges faced when developing Level 2/2+ ADAS applications, such as solving safety issues and finding scalable fusion and perception software that offers high performance at a low cost. These two distinct products are comprehensive low-level fusion and perception software stacks that optimally combine sensor modalities for Level 2/2+ ADAS applications achieving a 5-star NCAP 2025/GSR 2022 rating.

  • LeddarVision Front (Entry-Level) (LVF-E): This product pushes the performance envelope, doubling the effective range of the sensors and enabling, for the first time, a solution with only three sensors. Low-cost sensing, together with efficient implementation on the TDA4L platform, achieves the lowest system cost for L2/L2+ entry-level ADAS.
  • LeddarVision Front (High-End) (LVF-H): With sensor configuration extended to 1V5R based on a single 3-megapixel 120-degree camera and five radars, the LVF-H stack extends the perception support to highway assist applications, including 160 km/h adaptive cruise control, 200-meter range and semi-automated lane change. These plus other features, including low-cost sensing, achieve economical front-view L2/L2+ premium ADAS.

Special Feature: LeddarVision Surround (LVS-2+). This product efficiently extends the LVF front-view product family 1VxR sensor configuration to a 5V5R configuration, enhancing support to traffic jam assist (TJA) and highway assist (HWA) applications. It also enables applications such as automated lane change, overtaking and extended speed range adaptive cruise control (ACC). Furthermore, the LVS-2+ supports premium surround-view L2/L2+ ADAS highway assistance and 5-star NCAP 2025/GSR 2022 safety applications.

LeddarTech Presents: On March 27 (11:30 to 12:00 CET), the CTO of LeddarTech, Pierre Olivier, a Tech.AD favorite for his engaging and thoughtful presentations, will deliver a keynote presentation entitled: “Solving Critical Issues Affecting the Safety of ADAS to Accelerate AD Adoption.” This presentation will unveil some critical issues surrounding ADAS and AD safety and performance that are evident today, why they affect customer confidence, and how they can be addressed to accelerate greater safety and autonomy.

Pre-arrange a meeting today.

About Automotive Tech.AD Berlin

10th Anniversary: This award-winning AD & ADAS conference is designed to bring advanced engineers and automotive experts from OEMs, Tier 1s, suppliers and leading research institutes to the next level. Join over 600 of the most influential autonomous vehicle experts and executives in Berlin.

About LeddarTech

LeddarTech, a global software company founded in 2007, develops and provides comprehensive perception solutions that enable the deployment of ADAS and autonomous driving applications. LeddarTech’s automotive-grade software applies AI and computer vision algorithms to generate highly accurate 3D models of the environment, allowing for better decision making and safer navigation. This high-performance, scalable, cost-effective technology is leveraged by OEMs and Tier 1-2 suppliers to efficiently implement automotive and off-road vehicle solutions.

LeddarTech is responsible for several remote-sensing innovations, with over 150 patents granted or applied for that enhance ADAS and AD capabilities. Reliable perception is critical in making global mobility safer, more efficient, sustainable and affordable: this is what drives LeddarTech to become the most widely adopted sensor fusion and perception software solution.

Additional information about LeddarTech is accessible at www.leddartech.com and on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

Contact:
Daniel Aitken, Vice-President, Global Marketing, Communications and Investor Relations, LeddarTech Inc.
Tel.: + 1-418-653-9000 ext. 232 daniel.aitken@leddartech.com

Investor relations contact and website: InvestorRelations@leddartech.com
https://investors.leddartech.com/

Leddar, LeddarTech, LeddarVision, LeddarSP, VAYADrive, VayaVision and related logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of LeddarTech Inc. and its subsidiaries. All other brands, product names and marks are or may be trademarks or registered trademarks used to identify products or services of their respective owners.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/e8d665fc-e659-482b-bde7-9528b740e81a

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Africa Press Releases South Africa

LeddarTech Apresenta seu Premiado Software de Fusão e Percepção de Sensores e Produtos de Alto Desempenho que Permitem ADAS e AD na Tech.AD Berlin de 26 a 28 de março de 2023

QUEBEC CITY, March 08, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — A LeddarTech®, líder global no fornecimento da tecnologia de detecção ADAS e AD mais flexível, robusta e precisa, tem o prazer de anunciar sua participação na Automotive Tech.AD Berlin no Titanic Chaussee Hotel Berlin como expositora e palestrante principal. A LeddarTech é um Parceiro de Competência da Tech.AD e exibirá sua tecnologia; Pierre Olivier, CTO da LeddarTech, será um apresentador do evento.

Showcase da LeddarVision da LeddarTech’s (Estande 6)

A LeddarVision™ é uma solução de fusão e percepção de sensores de baixo nível, de alta performance, baixo custo e agnóstico de hardware para ADAS industriais automotivos e off-road e aplicações de AD.

Experiência: Demonstração do Premiado Painel Interativo da LeddarVision

Este painel permite que os delegados vejam o desempenho extraordinariamente alto do software LeddarVision em vários níveis de autonomia em vários cenários, como condições climáticas extremas.

Marque uma reunião para demonstrações de produtos, entrevistas com analistas da mídia e da indústria, ou discussões com investidores.

Seja testemunha do lançamento europeu dos mais novos produtos da LeddarTech!

A família de produtos de software automotivo LeddarVision Front-View (LVF) aborda os desafios enfrentados no desenvolvimento de aplicativos ADAS Nível 2/2+, como resolver problemas de segurança e encontrar software de fusão e percepção escalonável que ofereça alto desempenho a um baixo custo. Esses dois produtos distintos são pilhas abrangentes de software de fusão e percepção de baixo nível que combinam de forma ideal modalidades de sensores para aplicativos ADAS Nível 2/2+ alcançando uma classificação NCAP 2025/GSR 2022 de 5 estrelas.

  • LeddarVision Front (Básico) (LVF-E): Este produto amplia o envelope de desempenho, dobrando o alcance efetivo dos sensores e permitindo, pela primeira vez, uma solução com apenas três sensores. A detecção de baixo custo, juntamente com a implementação eficiente na plataforma TDA4L, atinge o menor custo do sistema para ADAS L2/L2+ básico.
  • Frente LeddarVision (Alta Tecnologia) (LVF-H): Com a configuração do sensor estendida para 1V5R com base em uma única câmera de 3 megapixels de 120 graus e cinco radares, a pilha LVF-H amplia o suporte de percepção para aplicações de assistência em rodovias, incluindo controle de cruzeiro adaptativo de 160 km/h, alcance de 200 metros e mudança de faixa semiautomática. Esses recursos, além de outros, incluindo sensoriamento de baixo custo, proporcionam uma visão frontal econômica L2/L2+ ADAS de ponta.

Características Especiais: LeddarVision Surround (LVS-2+). Este produto amplia com eficiência a configuração do sensor 1VxR da família de produtos de visão frontal LVF para uma configuração 5V5R, aprimorando o suporte a aplicações de assistência de engarrafamento (TJA) e assistência rodoviária (HWA). Ele também permite aplicações como mudança de faixa automatizada, ultrapassagem e controle de cruzeiro adaptativo de faixa de velocidade ampliada (ACC). Além disso, o LVS-2+ suporta assistência rodoviária premium de visão surround L2/L2+ ADAS e aplicações de segurança NCAP 2025/GSR 2022 de 5 estrelas.

LeddarTech Apresenta: No dia 27 de março (11h30 – 12h CET), o CTO da LeddarTech, Pierre Olivier, favorito da Tech.AD por suas apresentações envolventes e precisas, fará a apresentação principal: “Solving Critical Issues Affecting the Safety of ADAS to Accelerate AD Adoption” (Solução de Problemas Essenciais que Afetam a Segurança do ADAS para Acelerar a Adoção do AD). Esta apresentação revelará algumas questões críticas em torno da segurança e do desempenho do ADAS e do AD evidentes hoje em dia por afetarem a confiança do cliente, e como elas podem ser abordadas para acelerar uma maior segurança e autonomia.

Marque uma reunião ainda hoje.

Sobre a Automotive Tech.AD Berlin

10º Aniversário: Esta conferência AD&ADAS premiada foi criada para levar os coordenadores e peritos automotivos avançados dos OEMs Nível 1, dos fornecedores e dos institutos de investigação principais para o próximo nível. Junte-se aos mais de 600 especialistas e executivos de veículos autônomos técnicos mais influentes em Berlim.

Sobre a LeddarTech

A LeddarTech, uma empresa global de software fundada em 2007, desenvolve e fornece soluções abrangentes de percepção que permitem a implantação de ADAS e aplicações de condução autônoma. O software de nível automotivo da LeddarTech aplica algoritmos de IA e visão computacional para gerar modelos 3D altamente precisos do ambiente, permitindo uma melhor tomada de decisão e navegação mais segura. Esta tecnologia de alto desempenho, escalonável e econômica é aproveitada pelos OEMs e Nível 1-2 para a implementação eficiente de soluções de veículos automotivos e off-road.

A LeddarTech é responsável por várias inovações de sensor remoto, com mais de 150 patentes concedidas ou solicitadas que aprimoram os recursos de ADAS e AD. A percepção confiável é fundamental para tornar a mobilidade global mais segura, eficiente, sustentável e acessível: é isso que leva a LeddarTech a se tornar a solução de software de fusão e percepção de sensores mais amplamente adotada.

Para mais informação sobre a LeddarTech visite www.leddartech.com, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook e YouTube.

Contato:
Daniel Aitken, Vice-Presidente, Marketing Global, Comunicações e Relacionamento com o Investidor, LeddarTech Inc.
Tel.: + 1-418-653-9000 ramal 232 daniel.aitken@leddartech.com

Contato e site de relações com investidores:InvestorRelations@leddartech.com
https://investors.leddartech.com/

Os logotipos Leddar, LeddarTech, LeddarVision, LeddarSP, VAYADrive, VayaVision e afins são marcas comerciais ou marcas comerciais registradas da LeddarTech Inc. e suas subsidiárias. Todas as outras marcas e nomes de produtos são ou podem ser marcas comerciais ou marcas comerciais registradas usadas para identificar produtos ou serviços de seus respectivos proprietários.

Foto deste comunicado disponível em:

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Africa Press Releases South Africa

LeddarTech présentera ses logiciels de fusion de données de capteurs et de perception haute performance ADAS et AD à l’événement Automotive Tech.AD Berlin du 26 au 28 mars

La solution LeddarVision de LeddarTech plusieurs fois primée

La technologie LeddarVision récompensée à Tech.AD USA et CES 2023

QUÉBEC, 08 mars 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — LeddarTech®, chef de file de calibre mondial dans les technologies logicielles pour systèmes avancés d’aide à la conduite (systèmes ADAS) et de conduite autonome (systèmes AD), est heureuse d’annoncer sa participation à l’événement Automotive Tech.AD Berlin au Titanic Chaussee Hotel Berlin, où elle présentera sa technologie à titre de « Partenaire expert ». Pierre Olivier, chef de la technologie de LeddarTech, livrera une présentation.

Présentation de LeddarVision (kiosque No. 6)

LeddarVision™ est une solution de fusion de bas niveau des données de capteurs et de perception haute performance, à faible coût et indépendante des capteurs, destinée aux applications ADAS et AD automobiles et industrielles hors route.

Faites l’expérience d’une démonstration virtuelle interactive de LeddarVision

Cette démo virtuelle permettra aux délégués de constater l’extraordinaire performance du logiciel LeddarVision à divers niveaux d’autonomie et sous divers scénarios, comme dans des conditions météorologiques extrêmes.

Planifiez un rendez-vous pour une démonstration de produit ou un entretien pour les médias, analystes de l’industrie ou investisseurs.

Assistez au dévoilement européen des nouveaux produits LeddarTech!

La famille de logiciels de classe automobile LeddarVision à vue frontale LVF relève les défis associés au développement d’applications ADAS de niveau 2/2+, comme la sécurité ou l’identification d’un logiciel de fusion et de perception modulable capable d’offrir des performances élevées à faible coût. Ces deux produits sont des solutions logicielles complètes de fusion de bas niveau des données de capteurs et de perception qui combinent de manière optimale les modalités de capteurs et visent les applications ADAS de niveau 2/2+ conformes aux exigences 5 étoiles NCAP 2025 et GSR 2022.

  • LeddarVision frontal (entrée de gamme) (LVF-E) : ce produit repousse les limites du progrès technologique en doublant la portée effective des capteurs et en permettant, pour la première fois, une solution ne comportant que trois capteurs. L’abordabilité de la méthode de détection utilisée et le recours judicieux à la plateforme TDA4L permettent d’obtenir les coûts les plus bas pour un système ADAS de niveau 2/2+ d’entrée de gamme.
  • LeddarVision frontal (haut de gamme) (LVF-H) : supportant une configuration de capteurs étendue à 1V5R avec une caméra unique de 3 mégapixels 120 degrés et cinq radars, le LVF-H étend la perception aux applications d’aide à la conduite sur autoroute, y compris la régulation de vitesse adaptative jusqu’à 160 km/h, une portée de détection atteignant 200 mètres et le changement de voie semi-automatisé.   Ces fonctionnalités et d’autres, y compris la détection à faible coût, permettent de répondre de manière économique aux exigences des applications ADAS haut de gamme de niveau 2/2+.

Nouveau : LeddarVision périphérique (LVS-2+). Ce produit étend efficacement la configuration de capteurs 1VxR de la famille de produits à vue frontale LVF à une configuration 5V5R en améliorant la prise en charge de l’aide à la conduite en embouteillage et de l’aide à la conduite sur autoroute. Le LVS-2+ permet également des applications comme le changement de voie automatisé, le dépassement ainsi que la régulation de vitesse adaptative sur une plus grande plage de vitesse. Il est destiné aux applications ADAS de niveau 2/2+ supérieures pour l’aide à la conduite sur autoroute et répondant aux exigences de sécurité 5 étoiles NCAP 2025 et GSR 2022.

Présentation LeddarTech : le 27 mars (11 h 30 – 12 h 00 HEC), le chef de la technologie de LeddarTech, Pierre Olivier, intervenant apprécié de l’événement Tech.AD pour ses exposés éclairants, livrera un exposé intitulé : « Résoudre les problèmes critiques touchant la sécurité des systèmes ADAS pour accélérer l’adoption des systèmes de conduite autonome ». Cette présentation mettra en lumière certains problèmes critiques évidents aujourd’hui concernant la sécurité et les performances des systèmes avancés d’aide à la conduite et de conduite autonome, pourquoi ils affectent la confiance des clients, et comment les résoudre pour améliorer la sécurité et l’autonomie des systèmes ADAS et AD.

Planifiez un rendez-vous dès aujourd’hui (formulaire en anglais).

À propos de Automotive Tech.AD Berlin

Dixième anniversaire : cette conférence reconnue, sur les systèmes AD et ADAS, vise à amener au niveau supérieur les ingénieurs avancés et les experts des équipementiers, fournisseurs automobiles, fournisseurs de solutions et instituts de recherche de pointe. Joignez-vous à plus de 600 des experts et cadres les plus influents en matière de véhicules autonomes à Berlin.

À propos de LeddarTech

LeddarTech, une entreprise mondiale de logiciels fondée en 2007, développe et propose des solutions de perception logicielles complètes qui permettent le déploiement d’applications ADAS et de conduite autonome. Le logiciel de classe automobile de LeddarTech applique l’intelligence artificielle avancée et des algorithmes de vision numérique afin de générer des modèles 3D précis de l’environnement, pour une meilleure prise de décision et une navigation plus sûre. Cette technologie performante, évolutive et économique, permet la mise en œuvre efficace de solutions ADAS pour véhicules automobiles et hors route par les équipementiers et fournisseurs de rang 1 et 2.

Détentrice de plus de 150 brevets accordés ou déposés, l’entreprise a contribué à plusieurs innovations liées à des applications de télédétection et qui améliorent les capacités des systèmes d’aide à la conduite et de conduite autonome. Une plus grande prise de conscience est essentielle pour rendre la mobilité plus sûre, efficace, durable et abordable : c’est ce qui motive LeddarTech à devenir la solution logicielle de fusion des données de capteurs et de perception la plus largement adoptée.

Renseignements complémentaires disponibles sur www.leddartech.com et sur LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook et YouTube.

Contact :
Daniel Aitken, vice-président, Marketing, communications et relations avec les investisseurs mondiaux, LeddarTech Inc.
Tél. : + 1-418-653-9000 poste 232 daniel.aitken@leddartech.com

Contact relations investisseurs et site web : InvestorRelations@leddartech.com
https://investors.leddartech.com/

Leddar, LeddarTech, LeddarVision, LeddarSP, VAYADrive, VayaVision et les logos associés sont des marques de commerce ou des marques déposées de LeddarTech Inc. et de ses filiales. Tous les autres noms de marques, noms de produits et marques sont ou peuvent être des marques de commerce ou des marques déposées utilisées pour désigner les produits ou les services de leurs propriétaires respectifs.

Une photo accompagnant ce communiqué est disponibles à https://www.globenewswire.com/NewsRoom/AttachmentNg/e8d665fc-e659-482b-bde7-9528b740e81a/fr

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General

Our AIDS response must acknowledge and bridge gendered digital inequalities

Recent crises have pushed the gender inequality gap even wider and new technology has brought new threats to women’s autonomy and safety. This year’s International Women’s Day celebrated under the theme “DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality” is an opportunity to strengthen efforts to uplift and empower women and girls’ digital participation to ultimately improve their lives.

Sima Bahous, UN Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women has described it as “digital poverty”: the digital divide which “disproportionately affects women and girls with low literacy or low income, those living in rural or remote areas, migrants, women with disabilities, and older women”.

On a continent that contributes only 13% towards global internet users, nearly 45% fewer women than men have access to the internet in sub-Saharan Africa.

That means alarmingly high numbers of African women and girls are left out of digitally-enhanced opportunities such as employment, mobile money transactions and banking.

From a health perspective, excluding women and girls from digital participation restricts their access to life-saving information. That can have dire consequences in a region such as eastern and southern Africa where young women and girls carry the burden of HIV.

In our region, women and girls continue to be disproportionately affected by HIV, accounting for 63% of the region’s new HIV infections in 2021. HIV infections are three times higher among adolescent girls and young women (aged 15 to 24 years) than among males of the same age.

The factors fueling this reality are power, deep-set inequalities and limited access to information among other factors.

Our report Dangerous Inequalities highlights that sexual reproductive health rights (SRHR) barriers, lack of quality comprehensive sexuality education (CSE) and restrictive and contradictory policy frameworks make it difficult, if not impossible, for adolescent girls and young women to access essential SRHR and HIV prevention and treatment services.

Furthermore, sociocultural norms, stigmas, discrimination, perceptions and age of consent laws impede young women and girls from accessing HIV testing and SRHR services.

Such barriers discourage young women and adolescent girls from approaching healthcare centres for their sexual reproductive needs.

This leaves girls with insufficient knowledge and skills to protect themselves from unsafe and unhealthy sexual practices, leading to HIV infection and sexually transmitted infections, teenage pregnancies, unsafe abortions and sexual violence.

The UNFPA “Seeing The Unseen” report highlights that 13% of all young women in developing countries begin childbearing while still being children themselves. In eastern and southern Africa, the overall weighted pregnancy prevalence among adolescent girls and young women (10-24 years of age) is alarmingly high at 25%.

We have completely normalised the abnormal. That is a crisis in itself. However, closing the gender equality gap will give us the opportunity to change the inequality trajectory for women and girls.

Technology and the digital space should be made more inclusive and accessible in our region and beyond. Virtual medical consultations, SRHR apps and searchable information should be options our young women and girls should be able to explore in a shame-free, destigmatised environment.

We applaud African developers who have created multiple free apps such as In Her Hands developed by the Southern African Development Community with the support of UNAIDS. Such apps work to empower young women and girls with SRHR information as well as expand HIV prevention outreach.

However, all our efforts to make the digital world accessible and inclusive should also be safe. Unfettered access to information and unscrupulous persons leave women vulnerable to misinformation on the very health issues they would seek to treat.

Furthermore, while the virtual world gives us a space to create boundaries and interact at a seemingly safe level for school, work and socialization, online violence against women is proving to be pervasive.

A UN brief shares physical threats, sexual harassment, stalking, zoombombing and sex trolling as examples of some of the attacks women face online.

It is therefore important to accelerate internet literacy for women and girls and equip them with precautionary and reactionary measures to ensure their digital safety before online violence permeates the physical world leading to serious challenges such as physical stalking, abduction and trafficking.

In spite of the challenges and safety concerns, the digital world can be an empowering space when harnessed correctly. Safe digital spaces hold the potential to disseminate life-saving, evidence-based information on SRHR, HIV prevention, treatment, GBV reporting and related support mechanisms at the click of a button.

Initiatives addressing SRHR and HIV ought to be framed with an inclusive digital lens at the fore. Multi-stakeholder collaboration is key, particularly with the private sector, internet service providers and data hubs.

At UNAIDS, we have partnered with UNESCO, UNICEF, UNFPA and UN Women to launch the ‘Education Plus’ Initiative. The initiative accelerates actions and investments to prevent HIV by ensuring adolescent girls and young women in Africa have equal opportunities to access quality secondary education, alongside key education and health services and support for their economic autonomy and empowerment.

Furthermore, the Transforming Education Summit is a key initiative of Our Common Agenda launched by UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, in September 2021. It works to recover pandemic-related learning losses and sow the seeds to transform education in a rapidly changing world.

If harnessed effectively, connectivity and openly accessible digital teaching and learning resources can contribute to the transformation and democratization of education.

As we work to end AIDS by 2030, access to new prevention technologies such as long-acting PrEP to be rolled out in Botswana, Uganda and Zimbabwe should be expanded to the entire region. That should be rolled out without disparity between rich and poorer countries.

Emerging technologies such as the vaginal ring, an important feminist option, need to be supported to increase efficacy and accessibility. Furthermore, the preventive benefits of antiretroviral treatment need to be promoted and understood. Platforms such as social media should be considered powerful and accessible tools to raise awareness of HIV prevention and care in our region.

Technology is a game changer in access to health information and enabling young people to break taboos around sexual health and HIV and feel empowered in their bodies.

We need to urgently level the digital space, use it to end gender inequalities and safeguard our women and girls from the scourge of HIV. There is no price on human life: Ending AIDS is a promise that can and must be kept.

Source: Inter Press Service

Categories
General

Tackling Gender Based Violence in Fragile Contexts

It is fairly well documented that gender-based violence (GBV) increases during times of war and conflict. This includes sexual violence, forced or early marriage, and intimate partner violence, among others. In some conflicts, GBV is used as a weapon of war to create fear and terrorize populations. Lack of access to health services, education, and employment —particularly for women and girls—aggravates the situation.

Gender inequities are a root cause of GBV, which disproportionately affects women and girls living in conflict situations. “Because gender inequality is now understood as one of the drivers of fragility, conflict and violence (FCV) it is important to close gender gaps and create better programs for women and girls to make societies more resilient against FCV,” says Diana J. Arango, World Bank Global Lead on Gender Based Violence, Gender.

The lack of delivery of essential services to the population who has experienced conflict and instability can have a disproportionate impact on specific groups of the population, including women and girls. “This is why it is important to fund essential services in conflict affected populations such as health services for women experiencing GBV, as well as access to mechanisms to document the violence should a survivor want to seek justice. Mental health services are also essential for conflict affected populations and especially important for survivors of GBV. Furthermore, prevention of GBV in conflict is possible and investment in prevention of GBV in FCV settings is greatly needed.”

For example, in Uganda, poverty, food insecurity, aid dependency, and trauma put refugees and forcibly displaced women and children at risk of violence, as well as limiting their ability to look for help and access services. Uganda is home to over 1.5 million refugees, making it the top refugee-hosting country in Africa. GBV and violence against children (VAC) are prevalent in both refugee and host communities, affecting women and girls disproportionately.

As part of the Development Response to Displacement Impacts Project (DRDIP) in the Horn of Africa project the World Bank’s State and Peacebuilding Fund (SPF) is financing a pilot initiative in 4 refugee districts in Uganda to help women and children get access to safe and ethical care through existing service providers in the districts and settlements.

Part of the project efforts focus on bolstering the government staff through training and mentorship and strengthening coordination and referral mechanisms. “The training of service providers will strengthen their capacity to be able to help survivors access quality essential services, such as health services, psychosocial support, legal aid, and shelter”, says Margarita Puerto Gomez, World Bank East Africa Senior Social Development Specialist.

Promoting attitudes and behaviors that foster social and cultural change toward gender equality is also part of the project activities because negative attitudes towards GBV victims often result in trauma and mental health issues among survivors. So far, 710 local champions —419 Males and 291 females— have been trained at the community level to understand GBV and VAC risks and reduce tolerance to incidents of violence that may be occurring during project implementation. This includes translation of risk mitigation materials into four local languages and developing a GIS mapping of services for women and children survivors of GBV and VAC in all districts hosting refugees to improve referral pathways and coordination of response services.

In Haiti, one in three women experience gender-based violence, including sexual exploitation and abuse, domestic violence, physical violence, and early marriage. The numbers tell the story: in Haiti, physical violence currently affects 29% of women of childbearing age and is perpetrated by an intimate partner in 45% of the cases; violence linked to psychological pressure with the goal to exert control affects over 31% of women; women survivors of domestic violence account for 34%, with 37% of cases resulting in serious injuries.

“In Haiti, GBV represents a significant barrier to women’s full engagement in social and economic life and remains inextricably linked to violence and insecurity”, says Bruce Macphail, World Bank Senior Social Development Specialist, and lead on the Promoting GBV Services for Women and Girls project. “Access to prevention programs and survivor-centered responses services remain extremely limited throughout the country, are structurally under-funded, and remain affected by cultural social norms.”

An SPF grant in Haiti will focus on improving the quality and increasing the reach of services for GBV survivors, and promoting women and girls socio-economic empowerment, safety and resilience through the strengthening of the community-based Women and Girl Safe Spaces (WGSS). Safe spaces provide a safe entry point where women and girls at risk, or that have already experience GBV, can be free from harm and harassment, and access opportunities to exercise their rights, and promote their own safety.

This intervention is particularly important in emergency contexts, where women and girls are deliberately targeted. Girls and women are provided with assets and skills for making healthy decisions in their life and being able to negotiate their needs as well as comprehensive services and/or referrals for GBV survivors. “The World Bank is acutely aware of the global problem of GBV. This is why the SPF is increasing its focus on grants on gender in situations of forced displacement, conflict zones, personal violence, and crises”, says Valery Ciancio, World Bank SPF Program Manager.

The World Bank is ramping up its efforts to address GBV in fragile, conflict and violence (FCV) settings through its analytical work and projects, for example in Bangladesh and Democratic Republic of Congo. The SPF and its partners are contributing to that effort by ensuring that gender and FCV programs focus on activities that reduce disparities between women and men and boys and girls; ensure inclusion in the design and implementation of World Bank operations or dialogue; pilot innovative approaches to enhancing women’s voice and agency; and produce new analysis or knowledge on gender in FCV.

From 2009-2021, SPF funded approximately $26 million (44 out of 286 grants) in grants primarily focused on gender. Most of these grants focused on GBV prevention or response: 40 grants totaling $20 million in commitments. The majority of the gender-focused grants were in the world’s poorest countries. The SPF has supported interventions primarily focused on addressing gender in FCV across all World Bank geographic regions. These grants have their main objective related to gender inclusion, equality, or empowerment, including grants addressing GBV.

Source: World Bank

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Southern Africa – Regional Fact Sheet, January 2023

UNHCR serves 8.4 million people across 16 southern African countries, including 1.1 million refugees and asylum-seekers, mainly from Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo(DRC), Rwanda, Burundi, and South Sudan.

UNHCR contributes to protection and solutions for 7.3 million internally displaced persons (IDPs)in the region who have been forced to flee due to conflict or climate-related disasters–5.8 million are in the DRC and 1.1million are in Mozambique

By the end of December 2022, around 21,000 refugees voluntarily repatriated to their countries of origin from asylum countries in southern Africa. UNHCR also assisted some 3,000 people to depart on resettlement in 2022.

Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees

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Millions more children could face hunger crisis if Black Sea grain deal not renewed

Millions more children around the world could face devastating hunger if the Black Sea Grain Initiative, a UN-brokered deal signed in July 2022, is not renewed by 18 March, Save the Children said today, after UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres met with Ukraine’s President Zelensky to discuss the deal.

As war escalated in February last year, export routes from Ukraine froze up when cargo ships could not leave Black Sea ports, driving up food prices and threatening the lives of millions of children in countries in Africa and the Middle East who rely on grain staples.

Ukraine is one of the top-five global grain exporters worldwide, and around 25 countries in Africa import more than one third of wheat from Russian or Ukraine. The deal is currently allowing food to reach global supply chains, easing food prices and allowing grain staples to reach the most vulnerable children:

“The Black Sea Initiative must be extended beyond March. This grain deal is a lifeline for millions of children facing devastating hunger, which has been accelerated by the conflict. Failure to act now will prove catastrophic for children around the world and could cost thousands of lives.”

“The worst global food crisis in decades is putting millions of children’s lives on the line, and further disruptions to food supplies and price rises risk making the situation dramatically worse. Over 800 millionpeople are facing hunger globally, and children are already losing their lives”, said Nana Ndeda, Humanitarian Advocacy and Policy Lead, Save the Children.

Source: Save the Children