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This year's observance of International Literacy Day highlights the central role of literacy in the empowerment of women. Literacy transforms the lives of women, their families, communities and societies. Literate women are more likely to send their children, especially their girls, to school. By acquiring literacy, women become more economically self-reliant and more actively engaged in their country's social, political and cultural life. All evidence shows that investment in literacy for women yields high development dividends.
A new publication from the United Nations shows that 20 per cent of the world's young people experience a mentalhealth condition each year. The risks are especially great as they transition from childhood to adulthood. Stigma and shame often compound the problem, preventing them from seeking the support they need.For this year's observance of International Youth Day, the United Nations wants to help lift the veil that keeps young people locked in a chamberof isolation and silence. The barriers can be overwhelming, particularly in countries where the issue of mentalhealth is ignored and there is a lack of investment in…
 This year’s International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples comes at a critical moment as the world endeavours to meet the Millennium Development Goals, forge a new vision for sustainable development and prepare the groundwork for the adoption of a new legal climate agreement – all by 2015. Indigenous peoples have a central interest in these objectives – and can act as powerful agents of progress. In order for them to contribute to our common future, we must secure their rights.