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MaximsNewsNetwork: PHILIPPINES CLIMATE CHANGE FAMILIES WOMEN UNFPA, THORAYA OBAID

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Published on Nov 27, 2009

MaximsNewsNetwork: 25 November 2009 - UNFPA: According to a new UN report, women who have to feed their families will face special challenges and must help shape the response to climate change. In the Philippines, mobilizing women can make a difference in addressing environmental concerns.
Rising sea levels and more intense storms will severely impact coastal areas as the Earth becomes warmer, scientists say. And according to a new UN report, women who have to feed their families will face special challenges and must help shape the response to climate change.
How can poor communities adapt? Experience from the Philippines shows that mobilizing women can make a difference in addressing environmental concerns.
Ubay, on Bohol island, has already learned the hard way that living standards fall when human activity harms the marine environment. Dynamite fishing and other destructive practices led in the 1990s to a sharp decline in the once bountiful fish catch.
SOUNDBITE (Cebuano), Aida Olaguir, activist:
When fewer fish were caught it affected women, since we manage the household budget. We had to buy smaller fish, and they became more expensive. That made it harder to send our kids to school.
In the past few years, Ubay women and men have worked together to reverse the damage. With strong leadership and active community support, the town established fishing sanctuaries and imposed steep penalties for using dynamite or illegal nets.
Mangrove swamps, once plundered for firewood, are being replanted, restoring the habitat where fish reproduce and offering greater protection against storms.
The active participation of neighbourhood women was one key to Ubays success. The UN Population Funds 2009 report on The State of World Population says efforts to adapt to climate change must involve women and pay special attention to their specific needs.
SOUNDBITE (English) Robert Engelman, Report author:
Women are on the front lines as their communities are buffeted by the impacts of climate change. Women are often most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, as they are to other causes of disasters and conflicts. Women bring their own perspectives to societies efforts to reduce emissions and adapt to climate change.
In Ubay, women not only protect coastal resources; they are helping families to escape poverty by teaching livelihood skills. With extra money mothers will be better able to send their children to school.
Helping women to choose smaller families is also seen as critical to fighting poverty. That is one reason Ubay invests in reproductive health care. Rosalena understands this well. Her husbands meagre income as a farm worker barely feeds her six children.
SOUNDBITE (English) Thoraya Ahmed Obaid, Executive Director, UNFPA:
A world that will be dealing with climate change for centuries to come cant afford to limit the potential of half its population to contribute to the solution.


MaximsNewsNetwork:
News Network for the United Nations and the International Community.
See: http://www.MaximsNews.com.
"GIVING POWER & RESONANCE TO THE VOICE OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY"

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