Momentum on women's advancement still going strong


Four years after the UN Fourth World Conference for Women in Beijing, Ha Noi participants in the 1995 Conference gathered on Sunday 8 August to reflect on Viet Nam's follow up to this major event that put women's advancement firmly on the development agenda. "The atmosphere of the Conference is still in all of us", said Mme Le Thi Thu, Permanent Vice President of the Viet Nam Women's Union—who was President of the Women's Union in Ho Chi Minh City when she attended the Beijing Conference in 1995. On Sunday she described how she has integrated the ideals of the Conference, and the Platform for Action that developed from it, into her work.

Mme Thu joined other distinguished guests at the meeting hosted by the Women's Museum including Mme Nguyen Thi Binh, Vice President of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam; Mme Truong My Hoa, Vice Chairperson of the National Assembly and Mr Tran Xuan Nhi, Vice Chairman of the National Committee for the Advancement of Women.

"These meetings become a bridge to carry the atmosphere forward. They force us to continue our efforts. The Vietnamese Government is strongly committed to follow up on the commitments made at the Beijing Conference, and looks to other Governments to do likewise", said Mme Truong My Hoa, who was the Head of the Government Delegation to the Beijing Conference in 1995.

Participants reflected on their experience at the Conference and NGO Forum, and talked about the importance of ongoing work in the lead up to the Beijing +5 follow-up meeting that will be held in New York in June next year, five years after the Beijing Conference took place. Sunday's meeting was part of the preparatory process for developing an exhibition on Viet Nam's work throughout the lead up and follow up to the Beijing Conference. Similar meetings have taken place in many provinces throughout Viet Nam during the past few months. The exhibition, which will be launched on 20 October—National Women's Day—at the Vietnamese Woman's Museum, 36 Ly Thuong Kiet Street in Ha Noi is being funded by the United Nations, Oxfam (Great Britain), the Canadian Embassy and the Swiss Agency for Development and Co-operation.