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#HeForShe campaign: What you need to know

This weekend, the U.N. launched a new gender equality initiative called HeForShe with guest-speaker Emma Watson making a powerful call on men to step up to the plate and participate in the precipitation of change.

Photo courtesy of Dennis Van Tine/Future Image/

If you missed it, the U.N. launched a brilliant new human rights campaign this weekend called HeForShe — aiming to raise awareness of global inequality of women and to encourage their male counterparts to contribute to changing the gender imbalance.

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The initiative was launched in New York City on Saturday, with Emma Watson co-hosting the event. The 24-year-old Harry Potter actress — who was appointed as U.N. Women Goodwill Ambassador earlier this year — delivered a powerful and emotional speech at the campaign launch, drawing particular attention to the prejudiced unpopularity of the term “feminist” and restrictions faced by the male sex. This was a particularly poignant topic, considering that feminism is defined as gender equality, encompassing fair treatment of women and men.

Video courtesy of Alejandra Rodriguez/YouTube

As you can tell, Watson has decided to use her celebrity status to promote a cause of global significance and to pull inspiration from her personal experiences with inequality. It is important to make the distinction that HeForShe does not simply promote women supporting other women (which is a common platform), but invites men to the discussion table. This initiative is about both genders supporting each other and encouraging freedom disassociated from sex.

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You can join the HeForShe mailing list and spread the word of the campaign. So, share it with the men and women in your life. We still have a long way to go before we achieve gender equality, but supporting these initiatives and starting a dialogue is a good start.

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