HM Queen Rania Al Abdullah gave a powerful speech during the HeForShe IMPACT Summit in New York as part of the UN General Assembly.
World leaders along with UN Women Global Goodwill Ambassador Anne Hathaway gathered yesterday to analyse the challenges that face women around the globe with the Jordanian royal specifically focusing on Arab women. She said:
“Through civil war and armed conflict, unemployment and forced displacement, Arab women are digging deep to hold their families together in the most testing conditions.”
“And, yet, they bridge that gap with a spirit of steel and a will to match. I’m so proud that amidst this instability, we’ve seen strides in women’s health and education.”
She acknowledged the effect that HeForShe movement has had around the world and said:
“As someone who travels between East and West, hearing women’s stories, I can tell you: when it comes to the issue of women’s empowerment, distances shrink and differences fade.”
She spoke of meeting Jordanian women changing the ‘landscape’ of their labour force and a platform created in 2010 for women to help showcase their skills and find jobs. However, her majesty also noted that there is work to be done with our region caming last in the World Economic Forum’s recent Gender Gap Report. She said:
“For all those standing, many more are not yet on their feet. So, I want to urge you: reach over borders and boundaries. Pull up women weighed down by hurdles you’ll never know. Light up the Arab chapter of HeForShe. Because when everyone is for she, we’re greater than the sum of our parts.”