A key event in support of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) at the United Nations is the NGO Consultation Day. Presented as a kind of kick-off to the upcoming two weeks of UN events examining the status of women throughout the world and acting as a kind of barometer for advancement on the front of women's empowerment, this daylong global interchange not only highlights the work being done by NGOs around the world, but highlights specific avenues being pursued to move the agenda forward.
The backdrop of these efforts is the 1995 Beijing Declaration and the Platform for Action, which together deliver a blueprint agenda for women's empowerment and advancement through decisions and policy. The 2016 Consultation Day brought together the purpose, thoughts, needs and anticipated directions of numerous NGOs and the people who power them.
Chief on the agenda was the concept and framework of advocacy to stop violence against women worldwide. The idea that violence is experienced in myriad formats through such broad areas as migration; education and health; poverty and finance; and water and climate change became the basis for the breakout sessions centered around these topical areas. This look into challenges faced and barriers overcome stemmed from the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for 2030, most specifically SDG5: Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls and SDG6: Ensure access to water and sanitation for all.
With these central tenets as guideposts, the 2016 NGO CSW Consultation Day created the opportunity to re-engage the discussion, re-visit the path which brought the women's empowerment movement to this point and re-envision the journey to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals of 2030.