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A gender statistician is making sure women are counted in Kenya
United Nations Foundation
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This story was originally shared on #EqualEverywhere — a campaign to champion the changemakers working to make equality for girls and women a reality. You can find the original story here.

Caroline Gatwiri Mutiwiri is a gender statistician at the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics.

What does #EqualEverywhere mean to you?
#EqualEverywhere is fundamentally about fairness. It means that women and men as well as girls and boys enjoy the same rights, resources, opportunities and protections, irrespective of their orientation, gender, or any other defining characteristic. Notably, #EqualEverywhere does not assume uniform treatment of all people, since deliberate steps are needed to reach gender parity and to redress the exclusion of girls, women, and marginalized groups.

Why do you advocate for equal rights for girls and women?
Men and women are not equal and gender affects an individual's living experience. Gender equality is a fundamental human right and is essential to a prosperous, sustainable world. Inequalities faced by girls begin right at birth and follow them all their lives. Women and girls represent half of the world's population — empowering them can facilitate a more peaceful society where everyones' full potential can be realized. By accelerating social progress, gender equality can correct the long-held status quo of men being better positioned in social, economic, and political arena than women.

What motivates you to do this work?
Steady progress in integrating gender perspectives into development policies over the past few decades has motivated me. Kenya's progress across many sectors is a case in point. According to World Bank data, the share of Kenya's waged and salaried female workers in the labor force rose from 19.4% in 2000 to 23% in 2018, a significant shift, albeit still low when compared to men, who constitute 53.2% of the workforce. News of this disparity led to a push for equality everywhere. Nonetheless, women globally earn 77 cents for every dollar that men receive for the same work, so clearly, we are far from #EqualEverywhere. Likewise, more effort is required in the economic and political sectors where the disparities persist and where legislative reforms and affirmative action are needed.


What are the main challenges you experience in your work to advance gender equality?
A lack of political goodwill, inadequate legal protections, weak legislative enforcement and resource shortfalls are delaying advances. Gender stereotyping and lack of awareness regarding what constitutes gender-sensitive policy making persists. Kenya, for instance, has struggled to pass Bill 2018, known as the Gender Bill, due to lack of political will.

What progress are you seeing as a result of your work?
As awareness of gender inequalities spreads, discussions are opening up — people are beginning to reject gender stereotypes, some of which are formed in the workplace. As gender advocacy begins to gain traction, more men accept that women can also hold the same positions as them and make positive contributions inside and outside the workplace. The realization that gender is not solely a women's issue but rather an all-inclusive priority for both men and women is taking hold. In addition, the frequency with which a gender dimension is included in processing and analyzing data is growing.

What progress are you seeing in the wider gender equality movement?
Harassment and violence perpetrated against women in the workplace are being identified and handled and racial discrimination is easing. Women are increasingly becoming role models, challenging the notion of male chauvinism and dominance. More and more women are joining the labor force and the push to select female CEOs and to foster entrepreneurship among women is intensifying, particularly in big economies like the U.S. This motivates other countries and international bodies to champion for gender equality. The rise of women in politics, which has long been dominated by men, is also encouraging.

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She bought the perfect wedding dress that went viral on TikTok. It was only $3.75

Lynch is part of a growing line of newlyweds going against the regular wedding tradition of spending loads of money.

Making a priceless memory

Upon first glance, one might think that Jillian Lynch wore a traditional (read: expensive) dress to her wedding. After all, it did look glamorous on her. But this 32-year-old bride has a secret superpower: thrifting.

Lynch posted her bargain hunt on TikTok, sharing that she had been perusing thrift shops in Ohio for four days in a row, with the actual ceremony being only a month away. Lynch then displays an elegant ivory-colored Camila Coelho dress. Fitting perfectly, still brand new and with the tags on it, no less.

You can find that exact same dress on Revolve for $220. Lynch bought it for only $3.75.
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This article originally appeared on 08.21.18


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"Mom missed the memo it was parent day, and the reason her mom missed the memo was her dad left Wednesday," said Alexis Perry-Rodriguez, Addie's mom. She continued, "It was really heartbreaking to see your daughter standing out there being the only one without their father, knowing why he's away. It's not just an absentee parent. He's serving our country."

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Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.