UN Women is a 'Fearless Entity'… not agency farce!




UN Women is FEARLESS… not ‘agency farce’ !



Michelle Bachelet ‘enough is enough’


UN Women houses some serious players that truly are on a Mission to Take Action and create positive change in this world. The following are a few of the Women that devote much of their personal time and resources in making sure that UN Women is a successful entity. Please enjoy the following reviews from some of the Awesome Ambassadors that represent the efforts of UN Women. The thought that anyone could refer to UN Women as a ‘farce’ is opening themselves to their own ‘lesson of a lifetime’. ie. Peter Worthington, Toronto Sun, November 16, 2010 printed the following comment in an editorial for the Toronto Sun: ‘UN women’s agency a disgrace’. http://www.torontosun.com/news/columnists/peter_worthington/2010/11/15/16157106.html  or in print on November 16, 2010, used the term ‘agency farce’. 

We ask Peter  ‘When was the last time you were tortured for your beliefs?’

For example, the Former President of Chili, Michelle Bachelet has accepted the position as Chairwoman and with her drive, experience and passion, UN Women is destined to do great things.  With Ms. Bachelet’s history, one would have faith that her experience will enable her to grow into an extremely successful leader, considering she sits now at the helm of an organization that is comprised only of :   WOMEN  LEADERS. This ‘Agency’ is missioned to Take Action and bring positive change for the Women of our World in areas of equality, government, health and poverty.



Here is a view into the life from a young girl and the perseverence that has been shown by this Woman with the…

‘strength of a lion and the heart of a lamb’.



Michelle Bachelet Background:

Michelle Bachelet was born in Santiago, Chile, on September 29, 1951. Her father, Alberto Bachelet, was an air force brigadier general who died after being tortured for his opposition to Augusto Pinoche’s regime. Her mother, an archaeologist, was imprisoned in a torture center with Michelle in 1975, and went into exile with her.

Education and Vocation:

From 1975-1979 Michelle Bachelet was in exile with her mother in Australia and Germany, where she completed her education as a pediatrician. She studied military strategy at Chile’s National Academy of Strategy and Policy and at the Inter-American Defense College in the United States. 

In May 1975, Bachelet left Australia and later moved to East Germany, to an apartment assigned to her by the German Democratic Republic (GDR) government in Am Stern, Potsdam; her mother joined her a month later, living separately in Leipzig. In October 1976 she began working at a communal clinic in the Babelsberg neighborhood, as a preparation step to continue her medical studies at an East German university. During this period she met architect Jorge Leopoldo Dávalos Cartes, another Chilean exile, whom she married in 1977. In January 1978 she went to Leipzig to learn German at the Karl Marx University’s Herder Institute (now the University of Leipzig). Her first child with Dávalos, Jorge Alberto Sebastián, was born there in June 1978. She returned to Potsdam in September 1978 to continue her medical studies at the Humboldt University of Berlin for two years. Five months after enrolling as a student, however, she obtained authorization to return to her country. 

Tortured Under Pinochet Regime:

Michelle Bachelet worked secretly for the Socialist Youth, and was imprisoned by the Pinochet regime in 1975 and held in the torture center at Villa Grimaldi, along with her mother. Her father had died in prison in March, 1974, after being tortured.Torture and exileFacing growing food shortages, the government of Salvador Allende placed Bachelet’s father in charge of the Food Distribution Office. When General Augusto Pinochet came to power in the 11 September 1973 coup, General Bachelet, refusing exile, was detained at the Air War Academy under charges of treason. Following months of daily torture at Santiago’s Public Prison on 12 March 1974, he suffered a cardiac arrest that resulted in his death. On 10 January 1975, Bachelet and her mother were detained at their apartment by two DINA agents, who blindfolded them and drove them to Villa Grimaldi, a notorious secret detention center in Santiago, where they were separated and submitted to interrogation and torture. Some days later they were transferred to Cuatro Álamos (“Four Poplars”) detention center, where they were held until the end of January. Later in 1975, thanks to sympathetic connections in the military, both were exiled to Australia, where Bachelet’s older brother Alberto had moved in 1969.

Government Service:

Michelle Bachelet became Chile’s Minister of Health in 2000, serving under socialist President Ricarco Lagos. She then served as Minister of Defense under Lagos, the first woman in Chile or Latin America to hold such a post.  Bachelet and Lagos are part of a four-party coalition, Concertacion de Partidos por la Democracia, in power since Chile restored democracy in 1990. Concertacion has focused on both economic growth and spreading the benefits of that growth throughout segments of society.


Michelle Bachelet has three children, and is separated from her husband.




UN Women: Goodwill Ambassadors

Since the early 1950s, the UN has enlisted the volunteer services and support of prominent personalities from the worlds of art, music, film, sport and literature to highlight key issues and to draw attention to its activities. Over the years, many persons of international stature have lent their names, talents and time to support UN programmes — a number of UN Secretariat units and separately funded and administered Funds and Programmes of the United Nations have designated such individuals as Goodwill Ambassadors or celebrity advocates. There are more than 80 Goodwill Ambassadors working on behalf of the United Nations worldwide.



UN Women’s Goodwill Ambassadors


Nicole Kidman

Academy Award–winning actress Nicole Kidman, as a dual citizen of the United States and Australia, has been actively involved in philanthropic endeavours, of international scope, in both countries.

In January 2006, Nicole Kidman took on the role of Goodwill Ambassador of the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM, now UN Women). As UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, her efforts are geared towards raising awareness on the infringement of women’s human rights around the world, with a particular focus on putting a spotlight on violence against women, probably the most pervasive human rights violation that affects as many as one in three women. Since November 2007, Nicole Kidman has lent her support as the spokesperson to UN Women’s Say NO – UNiTE to End Violence against Women initiative, a global advocacy effort that has galvanized millions around the issue. She has also supported UN Women to make the voices of women survivors of violence heard through the media and helped to raise funds for programmes that address violence against women.


Nicole Kidman has served as the UNICEF Ambassador for Australia. She is also an Ambassador of the Sydney Children’s Hospital, Randwick. Her commitment, contact with patients and their families, and financial contributions to the hospital have helped make a difference in the lives of thousands of young patients over the past five years, with a direct impact upon the hospital’s Brain Tumor Service, Respiratory Service, the Nursing Practice Development Unit for Child and Adolescent Health, and the Chair of Nursing.

Kidman is Patron of the Australian Theatre for Young People, based in Sydney. She began her association with the theatre in 1982 as a workshop participant, and performed in various productions over the next several years. In 1993 she accepted ATYP’s request to serve as the company’s ambassador, and in 2000 became a principal sponsor, together with Fox Studios and the Nine Network, both relationships which she initiated on the company’s behalf. In 2002, mindful of ATYP’s importance in her early creative life, and of the creative outlet and opportunities it offers youth across Australia, she accepted the position of Patron.

While filming on location in Romania in 2002, Kidman witnessed first hand the plight of thousands of children currently orphaned and abandoned in that country, and she witnessed the remarkable work on their behalf of a UK-based organization called FARA. For the past twelve years, FARA has helped improve the quality of life, and provided alternative care, for hundreds of these children through Homes and Foster Care Programs that it directly funds and operates. For the past three years, Kidman has served as an Honorary Patron of FARA’s crucial, annual fundraising, including participation in the Royal Charity Premiere of “Cold Mountain” in London.

In the United States, Kidman has been an active and vocal advocate for women’s cancer research. Three years ago, she became the first Chair of The Women’s Health Fund at UCLA, at the David Geffen School of Medicine. In support of that title, she served as that year’s poster image for “Key to the Cure,” a women’s cancer initiative founded by the nationwide department store chain Saks Fifth Avenue and the Entertainment Industry Foundation. Her participation in the “Key to the Cure” campaign alone helped raise 400,000 dollars to directly support UCLA’s clinical research. Her participation in 2003 as honoree for the Los Angeles–based Women’s Cancer Research annual dinner, “Unforgettable Evening,” helped raise 9 million dollars for programs in Los Angeles (including UCLA’s) and 2.7 million dollars for similar programs around the country.

Nicole Kidman first came to the attention of American audiences with her critically acclaimed performance in the riveting 1989 Australian psychological thriller “Dead Calm.” Since then, she has become one of the most sought-after actresses in film the world over. Kidman has received both critical praise and awards for performances in a number of films (shot in countries ranging from Ireland to Spain to Romania to Finland to Australia and the United States), including “Far and Away,” “Portrait of a Lady,” “To Die For,” “The Others,” “Cold Mountain,” “Dogville,” and “Birth.” She received an Oscar nomination in 2002 for “Moulin Rouge” and won the Academy Award for “Best Actress” in 2003 for “The Hours.”

In 2005, Kidman starred with Sean Penn in Sydney Pollack’s thriller (filmed on location at the United Nations), “The Interpreter,” and with Will Ferrell in writer/director Nora Ephron’s comedy feature adaptation of “Bewitched.” She has voiced a role in director George Miller’s (“Babe”) upcoming animated penguin musical, “Happy Feet”; completed filming with Robert Downey Jr. on “Fur,” Steven Shainberg’s imagining of the life of photographer Diane Arbus; and just wrapped filming on director Oliver Hirschbiegel’s (“Downfall”) alien invasion thriller “The Visiting,” with co-star Daniel Craig.


Hon. Mrs. Phoebe Asiyo

Hon. Mrs. Phoebe Asiyo was appointed UNIFEM (now UN Women) Goodwill Ambassador in 1998. She has been a strong advocate in highlighting the status of women in Africa in all walks of life and the various forms of oppression they are subjected to, from domestic violence, rape and female genital mutilation, to forced/early marriage, denial of educational opportunities and denial of property and economic rights.

A political pioneer and outspoken advocate in the fight for women’s rights in Kenya for more than two decades, Mrs. Asiyo was elected to Parliament in 1992 as one of six other women after involvement in the Kenya campaign for democracy. She has also acted as Chair of Kenya’s Women’s Political Caucus and has been a Commissioner in the Constitution of Kenya Review Commission.

Women’s contribution to political life has been to provide the kind of leadership that empowers and enables the poor and grassroots communities to take control of their lives and their communities. Leaders in power are held accountable for their impact on an impoverished population, with new standards initiated by women. This type of leadership leads to long-term betterment in living conditions.” —Hon. Mrs. Phoebe Asiyo


HRH Princess Basma

Her Royal Highness Princess Basma bint Talal of Jordan was appointed UNIFEM (now UN Women) Goodwill Ambassador in 1996. The Princess brings vast knowledge of the needs of women in Jordan and the Middle East, and plays a key role in UN Women’s efforts to bring the voices of these women into the international forum. Princess Basma has been extensively involved in women’s issues for many years, both in her own country and through international channels. She assists UN Women in its work to ensure that development policies, programmes, and resources address the realities of women’s lives and respond to women’s needs and contributions.

Her Royal Highness Princess Basma bint Talal was born in Amman, Jordan, on May 11, 1951, to His Majesty King Talal bin Abdullah and Her Majesty Queen Zein Al Sharaf. Her Royal Highness is the only sister of His Majesty the late King Hussein, and Their Royal Highnesses Prince Mohammed and Prince Al Hassan.

Princess Basma is married to Walid Al Kurdi and has two daughters and two sons: Farah (March 25, 1971), Ghazi (July 21, 1974), Saad (November 8, 1982) and Zein Al Sharaf (June 1, 1986).

Princess Basma received her primary education at the Ahliyyah School in Amman, and then joined Benenden School in England. She went on to specialize in languages at Oxford University. In addition to Arabic, she is fluent in English, speaks French and has studied Spanish.
In May 2001, Princess Basma was awarded a DPhil degree from Oxford University. Her thesis entitled, “Contextualising development in Jordan: the arena of donors, state and NGOs,” examines the evolution of Jordan’s development process as shaped by political and economic factors. Within this context, the thesis traces the growth of civil society entities, particularly those working in social development, and as they respond to conditions at the local, national and international levels.

We have learned through experience, and I am sure you will agree, that development is not just about providing people with facilities and training. It is about learning to respect each other, knowing that each person has something unique to teach and offer us. Each woman counts. Each woman deserves our respect. We need to listen more.” —HRH Princess Basma, 1998 (Reprinted with permission from Princess Basma’s website.)


HRH Princess Bajrakitiyabha Mahidol

Her Royal Highness Princess Bajrakitiyabha of Thailand was appointed UNIFEM (now UN Women) Goodwill Ambassador in September 2008. Her goodwill ambassadorship and personal credentials have lent unprecedented visibility to UNIFEM (now UN Women) in Thailand, while uniting multiple stakeholders around the cause of ending violence against women. As a result of a nationwide public awareness drive with her as a central figure, Thailand collected more than three million names for UNIFEM’s (now UN Women) global Say NO to Violence against Women campaign.

I take pride in saying that Thailand’s support to the global UNIFEM [now UN Women] Say NO to Violence against Women campaign is second to none. I also note with appreciation the national ownership that has evolved around this process. It is indeed a strong foundation upon which coordinated efforts to end violence against women and girls in Thailand have been and will continue to be built,” Princess Bajrakitiyabha said in her speech on 22 November 2008, at a ceremony in Bangkok where 3,123,679 signatures to the Say NO campaign were submitted to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon via UNIFEM (now UN Women).




HRH Princess Bajrakitiyabha was born on 7 December 1978, the eldest daughter of HRH Crown Prince Maha Vajiralongkorn. With a PhD in Law from Cornell University, she currently works as an assistant public prosecutor in a northeastern province of Thailand.

Through her work, Princess Bajrakitiyabha encountered and came to learn about the situation of imprisoned women and their babies, and how domestic violence was the reason why many women ended up in prison. As a result, she initiated the “Kamlangjai” or “Inspire” project, which addresses the special needs and vulnerabilities of female inmates and their children. From its pilot phase at the central correctional facilities in Bangkok, the project has been upscaled to prisons in other parts of Thailand. The rights-based approach demonstrated by “Inspire” was showcased at the 17th Session of the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Vienna in April 2008.

Princess Bajrakitiyabha’s initial interest in the condition of women in prisons has subsequently broadened to other issues of violence against women, women’s empowerment as well as international instruments to address these. In an offshoot from “Inspire,” Her Royal Highness is a driving force behind the “Enhancing Life for Female Inmates” (ELFI) project. Under ELFI, the Thai government seeks international support to incorporate gender concerns into the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.

“I take pride in saying that Thailand’s support to the global UNIFEM [now UN Women] Say NO to Violence against Women Campaign is second to none. I also note with appreciation the national ownership that has evolved around this process. It is indeed a strong foundation upon which coordinated efforts to end violence against women and girls in Thailand have been and will continue to be built.” —HRH Princess Bajrakitiyabha, 2008.




Convention on the Elimination
of All Forms of Discrimination
against Women


Twitter:  http://twitter.com/un_women

SAY NO – UNITE:  http://www.saynotoviolence.org/

Underestimation? :  http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-11-09/iran-saudi-arabia-seats-on-un-women-s-board-would-be-a-joke-ebadi-says.html



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