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International Day of Rural Women
15 October

"Collectively, rural women are a force that can drive global progress. We must harness that power to achieve our three interlinked objectives for next year: accelerating our work towards the Millennium Development Goals, adopting a new vision for sustainable development, and concluding a meaningful universal climate agreement."

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Three women plant seeds at a farm

World Bank/Shehzad Noorani

Rural women are key agents for achieving the transformational economic, environmental and social changes required for sustainable development. But limited access to credit, health care and education are among the many challenges they face, which are further aggravated by the global food and economic crises and climate change. Empowering them is key not only to the well-being of individuals, families and rural communities, but also to overall economic productivity, given women’s large presence in the agricultural workforce worldwide. See more about The role of women in rural development, food production and poverty eradication.

The first International Day of Rural Women was observed on 15 October 2008. This new international day, established by the General Assembly in its resolution 62/136 of 18 December 2007, recognizes “the critical role and contribution of rural women, including indigenous women, in enhancing agricultural and rural development, improving food security and eradicating rural poverty.”


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