Today the three-day United Nations High-level Plenary Meeting on the Millennium Development Goals – or MDG summit – concluded. The MDG summit was held to accelerate progress towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals on time … which is by 2015. The MDGs set out to end poverty, a seemingly Herculean task.
You were there today as U.N. Secretary Ban Ki-moon announced the commitment of more than $40 billion for women’s and children’s health in the next five years. How so? Women of the ELCA is a member of the Women’s Funding Network, and today the WFN announced that member funds had committed $7 million in health focused grants to the top 25 focus countries for maternal, newborn and child mortality for 2011.
For Women of the ELCA, our commitment this year comes in the form of grants made to health-related ministries in Bangladesh, India, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda.
As WFN’s announcement said, “We believe that by investing in women as solution builders, women’s funds are positioned to exponentially increase the impact of their work on the ground, spreading positive sustainable systematic change for the maximum number of beneficiaries, thus bringing human security to families, entire communities and nations. Our Networks believe that women’s and children’s health and well being are intertwined with a myriad of other factors, including reproductive rights and social determinants such as community violence levels, employment, self-esteem and environmental conditions. This multi-issue approach to funding, focusing not only on health indicators but changing physical and social environments such as poverty, homelessness, and domestic violence, coupled with increasing individual knowledge and skills, provides a holistic approach to improving women’s and children’s health.”
You can add your personal support to Women of the ELCA’s grants program today through a financial gift. Supporting our grants program is one way in which women act boldly on their faith in Jesus Christ who calls us to care for the sick, those living in poverty, those who are injured and in need. Make a gift today.
Linda Post Bushkofsky is executive director of Women of the ELCA.