Advocacy Meeting with the Mission Representatives of PPD Member Countries:
The Observer’s Office of PPD in United Nations organized jointly with the Permanent Mission of Bangladesh a Breakfast Meeting in New York for representatives of PPD mission countries on South-South cooperation on 31 January 2011 to coincide with the visit of PPD Executive Director to New York to participate at the First Regular Session of UNDP/UNFPA Executive Board Meetings. It was a successful meeting with a number of ambassadors in attendance.
Mr. Jooseery in his presentation highlighted the range of activities undertaken by PPD and underscored key challenges to south-south cooperation in population, including adequate funding for family planning and reproductive health, need to pay attention to new emerging issues of climate change, migration, food security, the need for a better understanding of and support for south-south cooperation, and the need for more southern ownership of PPD since it is southern-led and southern-run, the need for systematic institutional support and national policy on south-south, even in countries where SSC is understood and accepted, and the need for southern countries to take initiatives on SSC and focus on demand-driven initiatives, and to identify own needs and pivotal countries for cooperation and to allocate resources to maximize returns from cooperation.
A lively discussion ensued with comments from UNFPA, UN-Women, UNDP South-South Unit and representatives of PPD member missions. UNFPA emphasized the need for southern countries to strengthen their ownership of PPD and reiterated its continued support to PPD. UN-Women also echoed the view of UNFPA that southern countries should support PPD more strongly. The Kenyan ambassador underscored the issues of role of women, climate change, and food and energy and communicable diseases. The ambassador of Viet Nam underlined the issue of young populations and argued for involving the participation of CSOs, and the private sector. The Indonesian delegation pointed out that the mission of PPD is not well understood by all. Finally, the South-South Unit of UNDP also underscored the issue of ownership by southern countries. The Observer Mission had made arrangements with the South-South News for video- coverage of the meeting.
PPD Represented at the First Regular Session of the UNDP/UNFPA Executive Board
The Executive Director, Mr. Harry S. Jooseery of PPD attended the UNFPA segment of the first regular session of the UNDP / UNFPA Executive Board meeting on the 1st February 2011. He made a statement at the meeting which was attended by representation from UNFPA and UNDP from all corners of the globe. In his statement Mr. Jooseery congratulated Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, the New Executive Director of UNFPA and highlighted the recent accomplishments of PPD, in particular the Yogyakarta Declaration which contained number of recommendations to accelerate progress towards achieving the ICPD Goals and MDGs.
In his first statement at the UNDP/UNFPA Executive Board, Dr. Osotimehin described a world population of 7 billion in 2011 as “a major milestone in human history,” where “every person should enjoy human rights and human dignity, and have the opportunity to make the most of his or her potential.” Dr. Osotimehin re-affirmed UNFPA’s commitment to the core principles of the Programme of Action of the 1994 International Conference on Population and Development, that “every person has the right to sexual and reproductive health, every pregnancy is wanted, every birth is safe, every young person has the education and services to grow up healthy, every girl is treated with dignity and respect, and violence against women should and can end.”
PPD to meet Family Planning needs and improve access to safe abortion
PPD in collaboration with Population Council and in consortium with other partners is addressing the problem of Family planning unmet needs and safe abortion in a number of developing countries. This is in line with a project funded by DFID and the objective of which is to produce high-quality evidence that improves the health of the poorest individuals, particularly women, in developing countries and accelerates progress towards poverty reduction and achievement of Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) 4 and 5. The purpose is to generate policy-relevant research that promotes the use of an evidence-based approach for improving access to family planning (FP) and safe abortion in several countries in Africa and South Asia.
Dr. Jotham Musinguzi PPD Africa Regional Director and Ms. Therese Maye Diouf, International Program Coordinator of PPD represented PPD in the first Senior Management Team (SMT) meeting of project on “Meeting the Unmet Need for Family Planning and Improving Access to Safe Abortion”. The main objective of the meeting was to develop a Work Plan with timeline, define the responsibilities and outputs of the Inception Phase of this project. PPD representatives apprised the participants of the meetings on activities and various programs that are being executed by PPD and reflected new programs which have been devised recently under its future plans. As a South-South dialogue agency PPD received wide acclamation from DFID reviewing board members and representatives from all institutes expressed their satisfaction on PPD’s role and achievements.
Courtesy Call on the New UNFPA Executive Director
Mr. Harry S. Jooseery Executive Director of PPD made a courtesy call on Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin, the new Executive Director of UNFPA on the 31st January, 2011 to brief him on the activities and achievements of PPD in recent years and seek his support for future collaborations. UNFPA is one of the primary funding agencies of PPD and the meeting was very crucial especially in the backdrop of recent expansion program of PPD.
Dr. Babatunde Osotimehin is the fourth Executive Director of UNFPA, to assume the office of the United Nations Population Fund. He holds the rank of Under-Secretary-General of the United Nations and steers the agency in adopting plans and program related to population, family planning and health. Prior to this appointment, Dr. Osotimehin served as the Minister of Health of Nigeria. He bears long standing experience in the field of health, family planning and development initiatives in population. He was also the Director-General of the Nigerian National Agency for the Control of AIDS, which coordinates all HIV and AIDS activities in a country of more than 150 million people. He brings with him rich experiences in social welfare, family planning, health, poverty reduction and controlling communicative diseases such as HIV AIDS etc. PPD actively looks forward his active interventions in strengthening its ties with UNFPA and more responsive initiative to strengthen PPD’s capabilities.
Meeting with UNFPA and UNDP Senior Officials
Executive Director Mr. Harry S. Jooseery, PPD and Dr. S.L.N. Rao, the Permanente Observer of PPD met with the senior officials of UNFPA on 3 February 2011. UNFPA was represented by Dr. Warner Haug, Director of Technical Division, Mr. Michael Hermann, Technical Advisor on Population and Development and Mr. Jose Muguel Guzman, Chief of the Technical Division. The meeting focused on the UNFPA evaluation report on implementation of projects by PPD under UNFPA technical and financial assistance and the South-South Cooperation Program of UNFPA and PPD. UNFPA officials expressed their satisfaction on the findings of the evaluation reports and assured of their supports to PPD under its new expanded program. They considered PPD to be a spearheading organization and its role as pioneering in the field of health, family planning, poverty reduction, population and development, especially in the areas of South -South Cooperation.
The Executive Director and Dr. Rao met with Dr. Zhou Yiping, Director of UNDP South-South Cooperation Unit and Mr. Francisco Simplicio, Chief, Knowledge Management & Programme Operations, Special Unit for South-South Cooperation at UNDP office on 2nd February 2011. During the meeting, PPD representatives discussed on strengthening the existing collaboration between PPD and UNDP South-South Cooperation Unit especially on the publication and dissemination of Best Practices Monograph that are being developed by PPD and explored further avenues for collaborations.
PPD Representation in the Forty-Ninth Session of the Commission for Social Development
The Forty-Ninth session of the Commission for Social Development was held from 9th to 18th February 2011 at the United Nations North Lawn Building (NLB) in New York, USA. The priority theme of the session was “Poverty Eradication”. In addition to the priority theme, the session also included review of relevant United Nations plans and programmes on actions related to disabled persons, youth, ageing, and family.
Dr. S.L.N. Rao, PPD’s Permanent Observer to the UN represented PPD in this event. In his speech Dr. Rao emphasized on PPD’s view on poverty eradication. He stated that PPD recognizes, like others, that poverty reduction is much more than just meeting the target of income levels of $1.25 a day. He added, PPD’s Alliance is a group of developing countries which, among other features also addresses a diversity of experiences in demographic and poverty transitions. PPD’s Alliance thus serves as a useful platform for exchange of learning experiences.
Annual Retreat 2011
The Secretariat staffs of Partners in Population and Development (PPD) went for an Annual Planning Retreat workshop at the resort spot of Cox’s Bazaar and St. Martin in the South of Bangladesh in the last week of February 2011. The entire program was devised by the PPD management to avail the office staff with time off as well as working visit with a planned workshop during the retreat.
The workshop commenced from Dhaka on the 21st and 22nd, the previous days with introduction of the issues that are to be covered at various length of the journey during the retreat by the attending touring members. During the stay at various places of the retreat different issues were addressed and discussed among the touring team members.
On day one the Executive Director, PPD gave a presentation explaining PPD’s role and activities in the National and International/Global context. An Annual Action Plan was presented during the session outlining the project objectives that are to be taken up during the year. The staff involvements for implementing the plan were discussed in-depth among the attending staff members and time and resource allocation for the plan were also shared. The strategic work plan requires of a comprehensive organizational analysis for stock taking of the present level of the organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. This was carried out through SWOT analysis.