New President for UN Women UK

Progress for Women Is Progress for All

New President for UN Women UK

May 2007

At its 2007 Annual General Meeting on 12 May UN Women UK elected a new President, Zarin Hainsworth. "It is a great honour to be elected and I look forward to working with all members and supporters of UN Women for the advancement of women", says Zarin. "We have a National Committee with women and men of exceptional ability and commitment and it will be a real pleasure to work with them to support UN Women".

Zarin Hainsworth became a Board member of UN Women UK last year. She runs her own business delivering training and consultancy, particularly in communications, gender and diversity and has run seminars, conferences and courses in the UK, Europe, US and Middle East. Zarin has worked with a wide variety of women's organisations in the UK.

In a message to members and supporters following her election as President Zarin said:

We are at an exciting juncture with the reform of the UN and the reshuffling of government in the UK that will take place in the summer. It is a time which we can use to lobby for the improvements that UN Women seeks both in terms of international and national mechanisms to champion women.

The glass ceiling is still in place, the feminisation of poverty, especially for older women, is a daily reality, occupational segregation is still apparent and there is continuing violence against women even in the UK where we are very privileged – so there is still much to be done. On the international scene, the face of HIV/AIDS is that of a young woman, abuses continue, and women are still victims and survivors of conflict rather than decision makers at the peace table as is their right. Yet despite the challenges that face us, we can take hope that UN Women will continue to assist women the world over to take their rightful place in society through education, advocacy and action to create a more peaceful and prosperous world.

UN Women has a role to play both across the globe in assisting our sister organisations to support the work at the UN and here in the UK through raising awareness of human rights and lobbying for a strong entity for women at the UN. We aim to be a dynamic organisation, able to act as an energetic advocate for the rights of women at every level and in every country.

The 2007 Annual General Meeting was held in London at Southlands College, Roehampton University. The College was thanked not only for hosting the occasion but also for providing office facilities over the past year to support UN Women's work. Outgoing President, Juliet Colman, opened the meeting and looked back over the progress made during her three years in office. She also spoke about the leading role that UN Women had been taking in pressing for a stronger agency for women at the UN. The main focus of fundraising in 2006 and 2007 had been the UN Women Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women which supports small-scale projects in many countries.

Zarin Hainsworth led the thanks to Juliet and the other retiring officers and Board members for all of their hard work on behalf of UN Women.

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