White Ribbon Alliance

EWEC NY May 14 2015 - UN Sec Gen Ban Ki-moon accepts Recommendations for Women and Childrens Health from Faridah Mwanje Luyiga credit - Stuart Ramson

Millions Call for Accountability & Inclusion: ‘Nothing About Us Without Us’

May 18, 2015
Copy of Recommendation Document

Link to Short Film

May 14 2015 12.40hr: Today at the VIP Lunch with Heads of State in New York Faridah Mwanje Luyiga a Ugandan maternal health advocate handed UN Secretary Ban Ki-moon a letter of recommendations from Citizens around the world for the updated Global Strategy on Women’s, Children’s & Adolescent’s Health.

These recommendations are the result of 100s of Community and National Level Hearings in some 30 countries, involving 10s of 1000s of people including health experts, Government officials and many youths; all spurred on by the desire to be heard by world leaders and help to develop recommendations to make the new Sustainable Development Goals a success.

Building on the 20million people engaged in World Vision’s Global Week of Action the letter has been signed by 100s of organisations, representing 10s of 1000s of people led by World Vision, the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood, The International Planned Parenthood Federation and Save the Children. Faridah will show a short film made by Citizens – follow link above to view.

The letter calls for greater accountability on Women’s and Children’s health to citizens, and starts:

"It’s all for us, yet we are nowhere.” Santana Murmu, Citizen Reporter, West Bengal, India.

On behalf of the tens of thousands of people that took part in the Citizens Hearings in some 30 countries, we would like to echo the voice of Santana and call for citizens to be at the centre of decision-making, health care delivery, review and accountability. Progress to reach all people will only be made by involving and empowering people…….. The status quo is not good enough. Commitments made must be delivered; reviews of progress to improve health must be done in consultation with citizens, including children and youth. A revised Global Strategy for Women's, Children’s and Adolescents’ Health gives us the opportunity to set a new course with people at the centre.

It concludes: Communities, district leaders and politicians are calling for greater accountability to citizens. We are counting on you to join with people worldwide to drive this change.”

Follow the link above for a copy of the full letter.

In his speech UN Secretary-General remarked Ban Ki-moon: “Today, I would like to call on all of you, new and existing Every Woman Every Child partners, to help mobilize innovative new commitments around the updated Global Strategy. These new commitments need to demonstrate how the global health community, countries and multi-stakeholder partners can align, be fit for purpose, and forge new partnerships to deliver results. Now is the time to renew our pledge to every woman, every child -- everywhere. Let us remember, we are all accountable to Every Woman Every Child. Every Woman Every Child is a health worker going the extra mile to save a life. It is a politician, a business person, it is an educator. It is your mother or father, brother or sister. Every Woman Every Child is all of us. Every Woman Every Child is ME.” Secretary-General remarks at High Level lunch on Every Woman Every Child

The next step in this campaign is a World First, when a groundbreaking Global Dialogue between Citizens and Governments on accountability for reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health will be held at the World Health Assembly (WHA) on 21 May. Following this a report from all the Hearings will be delivered to leaders this July before September’s UN General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, where the second ‘Global Citizens’ Dialogue’ event is planned.

[Please contact alivingstone@whiteribbonalliance.org if you are not registered for WHA and would like assistance with an event-only access badge to attend this event.]

Notes to Editors

Short Bio: Faridah Mwanje Luyiga, Ugandan maternal health advocate

Faridah is a health advocate in Kampala, Uganda. In 2013, her sister, Remie Wamala Nakintu, died in childbirth. As the Coordinator of the Uganda Parliamentary Forum for Children (UPFC), Remie often talked about the 16 mothers who die daily in Uganda and worked tirelessly to prevent such maternal deaths. Since her sister’s passing, Faridah has taken up the mantle and works passionately to prevent the deaths of other mothers.

Faridah has coordinated and organized Citizens’ Hearings on accountability for reproductive, maternal, newborn, child and adolescent health both at district and national levels in Uganda, under the theme: Citizen-led Accountability is Key in the Post 2015 Health Agenda.

The hearings brought together district leaders, health workers, Members of Parliament and ordinary people using the health services to develop a strong voice in setting priorities and strong accountability mechanisms for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the Global Strategy for Women’s Children’s and Adolescent health. Read a report on the Ugandan Hearings here.

Media Contact: Jenny Rose, jenny@happypr.co.uk, +44 (0) 7957 551 697

Accreditation for the Global Dialogue & Press Conference: Katy Woods, kwoods@whiteribbonalliance.org, +44 (0) 776 786 2912

Additional Materials Available
• Citizens Hearings Map: http://www.citizens-post.org/world-events-map/
• Citizens Hearings Reports: http://www.citizens-post.org/
• Citizen Post Films & Images: http://www.citizens-post.org/videosandpictures/

Spokespeople Available
• Faridah Mwanje Luyiga – Maternal Health Advocate, Uganda (in New York May 13-15)
• Betsy McCallon Executive Director of the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood (USA)
• Andrew Hasset, Global Campaigns, World Vision International (NY)
• Rose Mlay – Midwife & WRA Tanzania National Coordinator
• Aparajita Gogoi – WRA India National Coordinator
• Lennie Kamwendo – Midwife & WRA Malawi National Coordinator
• Philomena Okello – Nursing Officer at Lira Regional Hospital, WRA Uganda
• Larry Liza – Poet and Maternal Health Champion, Kenya