Innovative financing to drive women’s economic empowerment forward

UN Women Deputy Executive Director Yannick Glemarec attended an international forum hosted in Georgia to reflect on the implementation of SDGs through innovative financing.

Date: Wednesday, December 23, 2015

"The ambitious Post-2015 Agenda cannot be implemented one goal at a time by isolated partners,” said Yannick Glemarec, UN Women Deputy Executive Director, in his opening speech at the International Solidarity and Innovative Financing Forum for Post-2015 Agenda (TISIFF) hosted by the government of Georgia. “It calls for integrated action by governments, development partners, private sector and civil society to address a multitude of SDGs in a synergistic manner through cross-cutting policy solutions. It will also require innovations in technology and financing for development.”

Yannick Glemarec visits Georgia_Dec2015_400x267
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Yannick Glemarec with David Usupashvili, the Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia. Photo: Sergo Sardlishvili
The capital of Georgia, Tbilisi, hosted the first International Solidarity and Innovative Financing Forum for Post-2015 Agenda (TISIFF) — a platform for dialogue and sharing of good practices and lessons learned in the area of innovative financing for sustainable development. The government of Georgia plans to host such forums annually around December 20 — the International Human Solidarity Day. Achievement of the targets of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) calls for innovations both for developing technologies and services as well as innovative financing to reduce existing inequalities and disparities in accessibility to basic healthcare services, nutrition and food security, education, social and environmental protection.

The Forum was hosted in December 2015 by Georgia’s Prime Minister, Irakli Garibashvili, and organized by the Solidarity Fund of Georgia. The UN Special Advisor on Innovative Financing for Development, Philippe Douste-Blazy, addressed the audience welcoming the establishment of TISIFF in light of the growing importance of innovative financing for development and positively assessed the activities of the government of Georgia and its Solidarity Fund for the promotion of public–private partnership. Renaud Salins, Ambassador of France to Georgia and Niels Scott, the UN Resident Coordinator, also delivered opening speeches.

“Economic empowerment of women is a response and the way forward for achieving the global development agenda by 2030. That is why UN Women is currently developing an innovative financing instrument for women’s economic empowerment,” added Mr. Glemarec. “The aim is to partner with existing challenge funds and create windows to provide financial intermediation services to different types of women entrepreneurs.”

Yannick Glemarec visits Georgia_Dec2015_Tirdznisi village_400x267
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Yannick Glemarec met with with conflict affected women in the village of Tirdznisi on 18 December 2015. Photo: UN Women/Maka Gogaladze
During his four-day visit to Georgia, Mr. Glemarec held a number of high-level bilateral and visited UN Women field work sites. His conversation with Giorgi Kvirikashvili, the Vice-Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, concerned UN Women programming in Georgia –– especially in the area of women’s economic empowerment and how innovative financing can be leveraged to improve women’s economic position in the country.

Mr. Glemarec had the opportunity to visit internally displaced women and conflict-affected women in the villages of Shida Qartli. They shared their experiences and visions for social and economic empowerment that among others entail stronger voice in local planning and budgeting processes and improved access to productive resources. As a result of over five years of work with such women, UN Women and its NGO partners have succeeded in helping women make their voices heard with local and national authorities while identifying priorities be it improved child-care services and infrastructure for increased economic opportunities for women on the ground.

“Women in our village negotiated with local authorities [for an] allocation of funds to repair the road. It was important to us: Our kids walked to school sometimes in mud, elderly have problems to walk out of the house alone,” said Mariam Buchukuri, Head of Shida Qartli Community Fund for Peace and Development while discussing the results of social mobilization work by UN Women among conflict-affected women in the village of Tirdznisi. “The entire village — men and women alike — gave their hands to build it.”