"Poverty is Sexist:" JCU Welcomes Youth Ambassadors of the ONE Campaign
On Monday June 3rd, the Office of Community Service, Religious Life and Multiculturalism invited JCU students Marta Moretti, Francesca Dalmazzo and JCU Alumna, Fabiana Fuschi, to present “Poverty is Sexist” as Youth Ambassadors of the ONE Campaign.
The ONE Campaign is an international, advocacy, non-governmental organization co-founded by Bono, U2’s lead singer. It consists of over nine million people around the world taking action to end extreme poverty and preventable disease, particularly in Africa. Through its activities, ONE is committed to supporting the realization of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Gender Equality ranks #5 on the SDGs list, and “Poverty is Sexist” is a campaign focused on raising awareness of the disadvantages women and girls face in the world’s poorest countries.
Male privilege and traditional gender norms are a strong, powerful social component in many low-income countries. This inequality of treatment is often why women and girls are unable to access acceptable levels of education and healthcare (including contraception and family planning tools). Women and girls are more exposed to gender-based violence and stigmatization, are pressured to marry at a very young age, and are often discouraged from pursuing a career.
Women and girls living in developing countries are less likely to bank the money they earn, own the land they work, or continue their education. It is estimated that 750 million girls and women around the world today are married before the age of 18. High rates of child marriage persist among the world’s poorest populations, which explains why women living in extreme poverty have less access to better life conditions than their male counterparts. Poverty is also responsible for a lack of education on healthcare rights – in Sub-Saharan Africa, for example, young women aged 15+ make-up 57% of new HIV/AIDS infections.
Besides raising awareness, the main purpose of the ONE Campaign is to hold global leaders accountable for their words, encouraging them to join the fight against extreme poverty, especially in poorer countries where women are still striving to obtain basic human rights. One of “Poverty is Sexist’s” slogans is PROGRESS, NOT PROMISES!, which is on point, given that at the current rate of progress, women in sub-Saharan Africa will need to wait more than 160 years before they have access to equal opportunities as men.
ONE is calling on world leaders participating in the G7 Summit in Biarritz, France to implement at least two progressive laws or policies promoting gender equality by 2022.