[EAYAN Program Online Event] Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) & Gender Equality: Creating Synergies and Cooperation between the EU and East Asia
On Wednesday 5 August, Human Asia hosted our first virtual event for members of the 2020 East Asia Young Activists Networking (EAYAN) Program. Our final members for the 2020 EAYAN Program were selected in February, and originally were to meet at Human Asia’s EAYAN Program ten-day workshop in April 2020. However, due to the spread of COVID-19, the workshop unfortunately has been postponed for 2021. This online event therefore represented the members’ first opportunity to greet their fellow participants from South Korea, Japan, Mainland China, Taiwan and Hong Kong.
The theme for this event was ‘Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) & Gender Equality: Creating Synergies and Cooperation between the EU and East Asia’. Dr. Joëlle Hivonnet, Deputy Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Korea, was the guest speaker for the session. The session began with an opening statement from Human Asia’s President, Changrok Soh. Each of the EAYAN Program participants then had the chance to introduce themselves briefly to one another.
Following the self-introductions Dr. Joëlle Hivonnet then proceeded to give her presentation. After providing a brief overview of the importance and status of gender equality in 2020 and present EU and international legal instruments and conventions, Dr. Hivonnet moved on to look at some examples of EU-Asian partnerships. She additionally explored recent EU-ROK cooperation efforts to promote gender equality in South Korea. Participants were then given the chance to ask questions and express their own thoughts on future routes for increased East Asian CSO-EU cooperation. Dr. Hivonnet additionally had her own questions for the participants, including their own personal perspectives on the reasons for the lack of a regional human rights mechanism in Asia. President Soh concluded the session by reiterating that although shared cooperation between the two Koreas, Japan, Mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan on human rights may seem impossible on a state-based level, through ongoing efforts with non-state actors and civil society, there is opportunity and reason for us to continue fighting towards this shared goal of human rights protection.
Human Asia would like to express our gratitude to both our EAYAN Program members and to Dr.Joëlle Hivonnet for taking time out of their busy schedules to join this online event. We look forward to holding more virtual events for our EAYAN Program members in the near future.
For more information on the East Asia Young Activists Networking Program please visit: www.eayan.org