Date: February 5, 2011

Dear People

Good news! "Convening of a Fifth World Conference on Women" has reached the UN Commission on the Status of Women. The forty-five member-countries on the CSW are asked to support the statement and advance it to the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and the General Assembly. It is available in the six languages of the UN: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian & Spanish. This is the UN edited version of the Written Statement that I submitted on behalf of Pathways to Peace, Women's Intercultural Network and Women's World Summit Foundation. The CSW meets February 22 -- March 4, 2011.

Do what you can to help support the premise and vision for this conference. With Michelle Bachelet, former President of Chile heading UN Women, the new superagency for women, the confluence and synergy of her leadership, UN Women and 5WCW holds great promise. Not as an end in itself, but as a huge step toward a global women's peace, justice and empowerment movement.

--With love, hope, and heart-activism, Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D.


"The Chinese Bamboo Metaphor"

Jean Shinoda BolenThose of us who have a sense of movement in the grassroots, feel the energy grow before the dream materializes. In my advocacy of a UN NGO World Conference on Women and Girls as a means toward gender equity and feminine values, I believe that the Chinese bamboo metaphor fits the situation.

If you sow seeds of this type on fertile ground, you have to be very patient. Nothing happens for years; there are no green shoots or any sign at all for the first, second, third, or fourth year. The fifth year, something green pushes through the soil, and then it grows 40 feet in one year! The reason is simple, for years nothing happens on the surface, but the bamboo is developing prodigious roots until it is ready to manifest in the world. This is what bottom-up grassroots change looks like when a critical mass is reached. Suddenly, there is support, a new attitude, a confluence of effort and energy, and if enlightened leadership also manifests, a major cultural shift can happen.

Activism is an antidote against despair; whatever you do consciously to make a difference is doing something. It is also an expression of hope, as Vaclav Havel, playwright and first post-Communist Czech president defined it: Hope is an orientation of spirit, an orientation of the heart. It is not the certainty that something will turn out well, but the conviction that something makes sense, no matter how it turns out.
--From my new book (publication date: Earth Day 2011) Like a Tree: How Trees, Women, and Tree People Can Save the Planet.


UN CSW Parallel Events

I'm speaking at these:

  • February 23 (4 -- 6:30 pm) Proposal for a UN 5the World Conference on Women, CCUN, Second floor.
  • February 25. (noon -- 1:30 pm) Millionth Circle: Empowering Women and Girls, Changing the World, Salvation Army Aud.
  • February 25. (6 -- 7:30 pm) Feminism and Ecology: Sacred Feminine, Circles, Valuing Girls and Trees. CCUN, Second floor.

You do not need credentials to attend -- more details on my website schedule:

Seven point headings in original 5WCW proposal

The official translations on ECOSOC--CSW letterhead incorporated the seven points and reasoning behind them, but edited out the 2015 target date, UN NGO 5WCW, and Michelle Bachelet's name.

We urge CSW to support a UN NGO 5th World Conference on Women (5WCW) and advance this proposal to ECOSOC and the UN General Assembly. Target Date for consideration, 2015, twenty years after UN 4WCW in Beijing:

    1. UN Women headed by Under Secretary-General Michelle Bachelet and a UN NGO 5WCW will generate awareness of both this new superagency and the conference, raise consciousness, media-coverage and funds for both.

    2. A 5th UN NGO World Conference on Women would be the first with widespread use of the internet and associated technology to bring women's issues and solutions worldwide attention.
    3. Development of the next generation of global and local women leaders who will know one another will grow out of 5WCW.
    4. Women want a world fit for children: 5WCW would be a big step in this direction.
    5. All of the Millennium Development Goals require empowerment and equality of women in order to be implemented
    6. A 5WCW and events leading to and following it, would further women's empowerment and equality toward reaching a critical mass and tipping point that would bring gender-balance to the world.
    7. Women want a UN 5WCW

Website Resources:

Jean Shinoda Bolen website: http://jeanbolen.com
5WCW website: http://5wcw.org
UN CSW 2010 http://www.un.org/womenwatch/daw/csw/55sess.htm (E/CN.6/2011/NGO/10

Statement submitted by Pathways to Peace, Women's Intercultural Network and Women's World Summit Foundation, non-governmental organizations in consultative status with the Economic and Social Council.

All translations are in Adobe PDF format (click to open, right click and 'save as' to download). Translations are available in the following languages:


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