U.S. launches women's rights program in Pakistan

19:38, August 30, 2010      

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The United States on Monday launched a new 40-million-dollar Gender Equity Grants Program in Pakistan to advance women's human rights and support Pakistani government's policies against gender inequities.

"The U.S. and Pakistan are focused on empowering women and advancing women's rights, an issue of great importance to both our countries," said U.S. Ambassador Anne W. Patterson.

"Women and girls need access to education, full participation in political, economic and civic life, and access to the justice system to ensure the future stability and prosperity of Pakistan," she said.

The U.S. will work with the Aurat Foundation, in partnership with the Asia Foundation, to provide 400 to 500 grants to local organizations, the ambassador said.

The grants will range in size from 25,000 to 100,000 dollars. The grantees will include non-governmental organizations (NGOs), policy think tanks, academic research and training institutions, professional and business associations, media, as well as relevant government or quasi-government entities that address women's equality and empowerment challenges.

The grants will be used to expand women's access to justice and human rights and strengthen the capacity of organizations in Pakistan that advocate for gender equity, women's empowerment and the elimination of gender-based violence.

The program will also strengthen women's rights organizations through specialized training, leadership development, coalition building, advocacy and public outreach.

Source: Xinhua


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