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68th UN Commission on the Status of Women Conference

November 25, 2023 2:50 PM | Bill Magargal (Administrator)

Commission on the Status of Women logoby Francisco Salomon Luna and Mei Wang (Servas International’s Peace Secretaries)  

You are warmly invited to apply to Servas International to participate in the sixty-eighth UN CSW68 conference. The Servas International CSW68 Coordinating Team has been working on the event for some time. The team consists of Francisco Salomon Luna and Mei Wang, Hamsa Singh (SI Coordinator to the UN), Paige LaCombe (US Servas) and Kent Macaulay (Servas Canada). In addition to the core group, other Servas members have begun the legwork to organize Servas' virtual and online participation.    

Servas International has consultative status with the United Nations’ Economic and Social Council. This status enables Servas members to participate in a number of UN conferences and meetings. One of these conferences is the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) that takes place in March each year. The purpose of CSW is to strengthen gender equality, which is one of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Servas members have been participating in CSW for the past five years, in the belief that we cannot have lasting peace in the world until we have much greater equality for all. 

About CSW68: The next CSW conference--CSW68--will take place at the UN in New York from March 11 to 22, 2024. It will have the priority theme of empowering women and girls by addressing poverty and by strengthening institutions and financing. The conference will also be reviewing social protection systems for women and girls, their access to public services, and sustainable infrastructure for gender equality. Representatives of the UN’s member countries, UN agencies and NGOs will have discussions that lead to Agreed Conclusions about what they will do to strengthen gender equality. 

 Servas International has submitted a written statement to the CSW68 convenors on the topic of women, poverty and armed conflict in time to meet the early October deadline for such submissions. Here is a link to the full written statement 

The NGO-CSW Forum:

The NGO-CSW Forum is organized by and for global civil society and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) such as Servas to help connect them with the official CSW68 process described above. The Forum has over 750 “parallel events” that inform and inspire grassroots efforts and gender equality advocacy around the world. Although the NGO-CSW Forum takes place at the same time and complements CSW68, it is a separate process with separate organizers. 

Servas International offered its first-ever parallel event at the 2023 Forum—a virtual session on Afghan refugee women and on Servas Tűrkiye’s Peace School. We are currently discussing the possibility of Servas offering two or three parallel events at the upcoming NGO-CSW Forum in March. 

There is no limit on the number of Servas members who can register to attend the Forum virtually. If you are interested in this, please complete and submit the Application Form by January 26. Servas will have online sessions during the weeks prior to the Forum to provide further information. 

Participate in the UN CSW68 Conference

The UN will allow up to 20 Servas members to attend CSW68 in-person in New York. We want all of these Servas members to attend the first week of CSW68 (March 11 to 15). If you are interested in this, please complete and submit the Application Form by December 5. The five-person CSW68 Coordinating Team will then decide which 20 Servas members will attend in-person.

All Servas participants, whether virtual or in-person, will be asked to do a summary report on their experiences and impressions of CSW68, and to share that report with Servas’ CSW68 Coordinating Team. In addition, as part of promoting gender equality within their home country, Servas participants will be asked to share their report with the Servas newsletter, website and/or social media in their country and to share their experiences of CSW68 through a presentation for their country’s Servas members. 

CSW68 and the NGO-CSW Forum are excellent opportunities for Servas members to learn, network and contribute to make the world a more equal and peaceful place. We welcome your interest in participating. 

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