Celebrating UN Women: Thoraya Obaid's reflections on regional and global work with the UN (video, English)
Mahnaz Afkhami introduces Thoraya Obaid, WLP board member with over three decades of experience working at the UN in different levels. Thoraya emphasized universal human rights, cultural diversity, and contextual circumstances throughout her tenure.
Thoraya Obaid begins with a reminder that UN Women reflects “we the people” as the UN charter begins this way. The UN is set up to work with states to bring dialogue between governments and civil society. It should be a safe space where different points of view can come together.
Thoraya emphasizes that the youth of today are the makers of today and the leaders of tomorrow. They think differently, have a different view of the world, and we need to bring them into leadership and organizational structures. She stresses the UN as a place where women of all colors, creeds, religions, and ideologies can come together to create a world where democracy, human rights, dignity, and equality thrive. We must not judge women by what they wear on their heads but by what is in their heads.
Finally, Thoraya discusses UN Women as an organization on gender relations more than an organization about women. Men and women, youth and experience, should come together during this time of transformation.
Celebrating UN Women: The Way Forward is a symposium presented by WLP to celebrate the launch of UN Women, the most significant structure yet devised by the community of nations to address challenges and strategies for bringing about fundamental and all-encompassing change in gender relations. In partnership with The Center for Public Scholarship & Gender Studies Program at The New School, the symposium is held in conjunction with the 55th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW).