As catalysts, trailblazers and change-makers, women have unquestionably shaped the world we live in today. Next month marks Women’s History Month in the U.S. and Meridian is proud to honor the accomplishments of women in diplomacy around the world through a series of programs, as well as flashbacks to our flagship initiatives that demonstrate Meridian’s commitment to championing the empowerment of women and girls. WOMEN IN DIPLOMACY On February 24, in partnership with Women Ambassadors Serving America, Meridian hosted over 50 former and current women ambassadors from foreign embassies and the U.S. for “Diplomatic Readiness: What skills will diplomats need in 2030 and beyond?” This program opened with the Director of National Intelligence’s Global Trends report, followed by a panel conversation, moderated...Continue
In July 2018, Ms. Sadaf Usman, Director of For a Cause, participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program project for Pakistan: “Strengthening Civil Society- Building Community Resilience Against Violent Extremism'”. She and her colleagues visited Washington, DC; Baltimore, MD; Pittsburgh, PA; Portland, OR; Kalamazoo, MI; and Detroit, MI to connect with organizations working to prevent and counter violence through community-focused programs. Below she reflects on her experience. As part of the IVLP on “Strengthening Civil Society- Building Community Resilience against Violent Extremism,” I found the 3-week experience to be quite enlightening and educational. The rise of conflict based on race,...Continue
Sunita Danuwar, 2018 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report Hero, was honored this week as one of Fortune Magazine’s World’s 50 Greatest Leaders. Sunita is the Executive Director of Shakti Samuha, an organization that provides shelter and support to victims of trafficking in persons in Nepal. A trafficking survivor herself, Sunita now serves as an advocate for other victims. She has played a key role in expanding her organization’s victim-support services to include education and skills training, repatriation services, and legal assistance to survivors and girls at risk of trafficking. In 2018, the US Department of State recognized Sunita and...Continue
Transparency and accountability, whether in government, business, or other spheres of public life, ensures public trust in the integrity and fairness of leaders, elected officials and public servants. International exchange programs on transparency and accountability typically highlight the roles of civil society and the media as watchdogs and catalysts for the creation and maintenance of transparent and accountable government and organizations. The importance of protecting these two concepts is recognized by civil societies and such protective efforts form the bases of numerous international exchange programs. Transparency and accountability can both be applied to a broad range of concerns in...Continue
Women’s empowerment has long been recognized as a pillar of successful economic, social and community development. Since the 1946 U.N. Commission on the Status of Women, the international development community has focused research and attention on women’s rights in political, economic, social and educational fields, and one of the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals focuses on Gender equality and women’s empowerment.