Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Americans for UNFPA President to ring NASDAQ opening bell

Americans for UNFPA President, Anika Rahman will ring the opening bell of the NASDAQ Stock Market on Thursday April 9th, 2009. While thanking the Obama Administration and Congress for their support of the world women, she will call on all of us to declare, “I am an American for UNFPA.”

Americans for UNFPA builds moral, political and financial support for the work of UNFPA within the United States. UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, provides women’s health care and promotes the rights of women in 150 countries around the world.

It's the largest international source of such assistance and has proven effective in combating some of the most intractable health problems including the fact that:

* Every minute a woman dies in childbirth – that’s 536,000 per year, 10 million women dead in a generation – all from preventable, pregnancy-related causes.
* Pregnancy is the leading cause of death for girls aged 15-19 worldwide.
* 35% of pregnant women in low-income countries do not have access to or contact with health personnel prior to delivery.

“The solutions to end maternal death are known,” said Anika Rahman, President, Americans for UNFPA. “We need increased access to modern contraception, skilled attendance at birth and emergency obstetric care,” she continues.

“UNFPA is leading efforts to ensure that no woman dies giving life, but to end maternal death we need increased political and financial will from the world’s government,” said Rahman.

Saving women would bring an enormous gain in world productivity. Every year, the world loses $15 billion in productivity because of maternal death. It would only cost $6 billion to provide the health services to save women's lives.

Americans for UNFPA is asking the community at large to take a stand for every woman to enjoy a life of health and opportunity, and to declare yourself an American for UNFPA.

Rahman will be joined by Board Members, Mary Lindsay and Rita O’Connor; UNFPA leadership and staff of Americans for UNFPA.

The honor of opening the NASDAQ Stock Market was held in recognition of restored U.S. support for UNFPA and the world’s women. Last month, after seven years of stunning disregard of the world women, the United States joined over 180 governments in providing financial support for UNFPA’s global women’s health programs. For the first time since 2001, Congress, with support of the Obama Administration, announced a $50 million allocation for UNFPA in FY 2009.

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