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To support the women farmers during this crisis, UN Women has re-oriented its project, which initially intended to establish a seed bank to guard against future disasters. The project will now temporarily pivot to connect farmers to new outlets and market opportunities.
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Nearly a year ago, catastrophic hurricanes devastated the Caribbean. After Hurricane Irma, almost the entire population of Barbuda, a small island in the eastern Caribbean, was driven to its twin island of Antigua. In Dominica, Hurricane Maria wiped out crops, equipment and infrastructure. In efforts to ensure that women both benefit from, and lend their expertise to the humanitarian response in the Caribbean, UN Women has been working with partners in the immediate aftermath of the storms and beyond.
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Six months on, since the Category 5 hurricane battered the small island nation, UN Women assessment shows what women want is assistance to get back on their feet and back to work, not handouts.
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Opening remarks by UN Women Executive Director of UN Women Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka at the UN Women Executive Board First Regular Session of 2016 on 9 February in New York.
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She was brought up by a single mother in rural Jamaica, in a family of modest means. Today she is the Commanding Officer of Jamaica’s Coast Guard, the first woman to attain the prestigious position in the island state, as well as the entire Caribbean region. Commander Antonette Wemyss-Gorman learnt early in life never to accept ‘no’ for an answer. Her mantra: “I can do that!”
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“…Although efforts of international, regional and national institutions have created driving forces that have pushed women beyond the boundary of the private domain and an acceptance of shifting ideologies about feminine roles and functions, on their part, a concomitant shift has not occurred in the ideologies undergirding the construction of masculinity particularly in relation to the private domain”