The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), is the biggest gathering at the UN headquarters, second only to the Heads of State Summit in September. This year’s session (CSW61), started with a two-day youth meeting, and culminates in the two-week sessions comprising of thousands of government and civil society representatives gathering to discuss economic empowerment.
The CSW, the UN Women, who oversees the congregating of the session, reports that the CSW is a functional commission of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), one of the main UN organs within the United Nations.
The sixty-first session of the Commission on the Status of Women will take place at the United Nations Headquarters in New York from 13 to 24 March 2017. Malawi is one of 13 African member states that sits on the commission (comprised of 45 member states). Malawi’s term ends in 2019.
Representatives of Member States, UN entities, and ECOSOC-accredited non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from all regions of the world are invited to attend the session. H.E. Mr. Antonio de Aguiar Patriota (Brazil), Chairs the 61st session of the Commission on the Status of Women.
The CSW61 Priority theme is Women’s economic empowerment in the changing world of work. The Review theme is Challenges and achievements in the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals for women and girls.
The Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. A functional commission of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), it was established by Council resolution 11(II) of 21 June 1946.
The CSW is instrumental in promoting women’s rights, documenting the reality of women’s lives throughout the world, and shaping global standards on gender equality and the empowerment of women.
While the government representative gather in the main plenary sessions, there are also along the margins of these meetings, 240 side events and 400 parallel events hosted by NGOs.
According to UN the programme of side events, or activities organized outside the formal programme of the session of the Commission, provide an excellent opportunity for Member States, UN entities and NGOs to discuss the themes of the Commission and other critical gender equality issues.
The side events are held on UN premises wherein Permanent Missions and UN entities hold side events on UN premises during the CSW session. Giving color and splendor are parallel events that are normally held in the nearby Church Center and other locations.
Malawi appears to be a darling of the UN Women. It is scheduled to be co-host with the agency on the first day of the main preceding so of the session.