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Crown Princess Mary joins special commission with United Nations Population Fund


Photo: Sarah Williams

Crown Princess Mary has joined a special high-level commission within the United Nations Population Fund to help the agency follow up on its goals from last year’s 25th-anniversary summit.

The Danish Royal House announced the news on its website Thursday, saying that Crown Princess Mary was happy to join the commission and build upon its work at the Nairobi Summit from last year, which marked the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development.

The ICPD25 Commission will focus on the UN’s Population Fund to highlight the three zeros: “Zero unmet need for family planning, zero preventable maternal mortality and zero sexual and gender-based violence,” according to the Royal House.

“Since 2010 The Crown Princess has been patron of the UNFPA and has throughout many years been a passionate advocate in the fight for gender equality and the advancement of women and girls’ rights,” the Royal House said. “The Crown Princess has also served as a member of the High-Level Task Force on ICPD.”

The ICPD25 Commission met for the first time on Thursday, holding a digital meeting with its members. The commission will be co-chaired by Jakaya Kikwete, the former President of Tanzania, and Michaëlle Jean, the former Governor-General of Canada. Other members of the commission include global representatives from academia, research, civil societies, human rights activists, private sector, parliamentarians, and youth leaders, according to the Royal House.

Crown Princess Mary attended the Nairobi Summit in Kenya last November where she spoke about building on the progress at the first International Conference on Population and Development.

“The desired outcome of ICPD was to give choice to the individual – and – choice can be very powerful.  This milestone has fundamentally shaped the lives of women, men and families, and the societies in which they live.  It has contributed to reducing poverty and hunger and improving education and health, globally. More girls today are attending and completing school, fewer are getting married or becoming mothers while still children, and more are gaining the skills they need to excel in the future world of work,” Crown Princess Mary said at the Nairobi Summit.

“So, in reality the ICPD Program of Action was not just a win for the individual and for families, it was in fact a precious gift to the entire world, a gift that would keep on giving.”

The Royal House noted that Crown Princess Mary’s participation will focus on continuing to be an “advocate for gender equality and support efforts that ensure a world where women and girls have equal rights and equal opportunities, to the benefit of all.”

About author

Jess is a communications professional and freelance writer who lives in Halifax and has a passion for all things royal, particularly the British Royal Family.