On Saturday, 26 October 2019, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA Kenya), Amref Health Africa and Critical Mass Nairobi (CMN) hosted a cycling event dubbed ‘Nairobi Ride’. This is one of the activities leading up to the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25 a high-level conference to mobilize the political will and financial commitments urgently needed to finally and fully implement the ICPD Programme of Action agreed upon by 179 countries in Cairo, Egypt in 1994.
The Government of Kenya, the Government of Denmark and UNFPA Kenya are co-convening the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25: Accelerating the Promise, from the 12-14 November 2019 in Nairobi, Kenya. The Summit will bring together Heads of State, local governments, youth networks, civil society organizations, private sector partners, academics, and communities to mobilize and galvanize the commitments centred around achieving zero unmet need for family planning information and services, zero preventable maternal deaths, and zero sexual and gender-based violence and harmful practices against women and girls.
Critical Mass is a global apolitical, non-partisan movement that brings cyclists from diverse backgrounds every month to advocate for various societal issues. In Kenya, this is usually held at Jeevanjee Gardens every last Saturday of the month with an attendance of up to 500 cyclists.
The Nairobi Ride began at 9.00 AM, at the Jevanjee Gardens in the Nairobi Central Business District (CBD), and took the cyclists to Two Rivers Mall, Limuru Road. Cyclists included UN staff, Parliamentarians and health professionals. The cyclists covered a distance of 21 kilometers.
The Nairobi Ride, beyond bolstering the Nairobi Summit agenda, will also call to action various governments to keep their promises, redouble their efforts at recognising reproductive health, women’s empowerment and gender equality as pathways to sustainable development. These are also critical to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.
UNFPA Representative for Kenya, Dr Ademola Olajide stated that the Nairobi Summit aims to breathe new life into the ICPD agenda, sustain, and amplify gains made since 1994. “Although major strides have been made to promote the state of sexual and reproductive health and rights around the world, a lot needs to be done. The cyclists are riding to urge various government and world leaders to honour their political will and financial commitments to fully implement and accelerate ICPD Programme of Action,” he said.
About the Nairobi Summit on ICPD25
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD) in Cairo, where 179 governments adopted a landmark Programme of Action that set out to empower women and girls for their sake, and for the benefit of their families, communities and nations.
The Summit will take an integrated approach, covering five themes and highlighting the power of gender equality, youth leadership, political and community leadership, innovation and data, and partnerships to accelerate progress throughout.
- Universal access to sexual and reproductive health and rights as a part of universal health coverage.
- Financing required for completing the ICPD Programme of Action, and to sustain the gains made.
- Drawing on demographic diversity to drive economic growth and achieve sustainable development.
- Ending gender-based violence and harmful practices.
- Upholding the right to sexual and reproductive health care even in humanitarian and fragile contexts.