On our third and final day in Delhi, summit moderator Zain Verjee welcomed delegates and recapped some of the central themes discussed in each of our strategy breakout sessions on the second day. The need for comprehensive services was the main focus of the Human Rights track; corporate social responsibility and changing the mindset of bankers to increase women’s access to credit was highlighted in our Economic Empowerment and Entrepreneurship track; delegates in our Entrepreneurs in Handcrafts sessions set up a vibrant Marketplace featuring various products made by women across the region; and discussion in the Political Participation track centered around media engagement and alliance building among national party, government and civil society members.
Zain offered her own advice on engaging the media to promote the work of women leaders and their organizations:
“What’s most effective are two things: first, if you have a news hook, if something is happening in your country and in the news, you should pitch it to news agencies. Second, find a compelling human story to complement your pitch; if it’s a story about an individual, media is far more inclined to run it.”
This month, noted Zain, we commemorate the 15 year anniversary of the transformative UN Fourth World Conference on Women, held in Beijing, China. It’s especially significant that we can honor the gathering that spurred a global movement for women’s empowerment while we’re convened for our summit on women’s leadership here in Delhi, joined by several women leaders from the region who attended the conference 15 years ago; their determination unfazed, their energy was vibrant as we collectively recommitted ourselves to realizing the ideals set forth in Beijing.