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12 Oct 2018 description

Commonwealth finance ministers concluded their annual meeting today in Bali, Indonesia, by endorsing key strategies aimed at helping countries reduce disaster risk.

09 Oct 2018 description

Finance ministers from the 53 member countries of the Commonwealth will meet in the margins of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank annual meetings this week in Bali, Indonesia, to discuss financing solutions to help counter the risk of natural disasters in their countries.

04 Oct 2018 description

The ‘Ask The Expert’ series features leading specialists who work at the Commonwealth Secretariat in specialised areas. In this fourth edition, Travis Mitchell, Head of Economic Policy and Small States, talks about the priority areas that will be discussed at this year’s Commonwealth Finance Ministers Meeting.

This year’s Commonwealth Finance Ministers Meeting will focus on ‘Enhancing National Capacity to Reduce Disaster Risk’. What challenges Commonwealth countries face in terms of disaster risk management?

08 Aug 2018 description

Workshop Report for the Legislating for Climate Smart Disaster Risk Management in the Pacific, 6 – 8 July. This three day workshop was held in partnership with the Commonwealth Secretariat, the Pacific Island Forum Secretariat and IFRC, with financial support provide by Australian Red Cross and British Red Cross.

The workshop involved legislative drafters and disaster and climate practitioners from 12 Pacific countries, as well as partners from the UN, academia and the private sector.

27 Apr 2018 description

Patricia Scotland is meeting with leaders in the Caribbean to explore the Commonwealth’s role in minimising the impact of extreme weather events as the region’s hurricane season approaches.

The Secretary-General said it was a worrying time for leaders. “The threat of life-changing, economy-decimating, apocalyptic storms and hurricanes is beginning to cast a long shadow on the sunny islands of the Caribbean. June 1st is the day that is circled on the calendar, and as the countdown to hurricane season begins, nobody knows what to expect.

27 Mar 2018 description

Commonwealth Secretary-General has met Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on her first official visit to New Zealand.

They spoke on a number of issues affecting the Commonwealth during their meeting at the executive wing of the Beehive, the parliament buildings, in Wellington today.

29 Nov 2017 description

Storm ravaged countries need the Commonwealth’s innovative regenerative model to build back better and stronger, Secretary-General Patricia Scotland asserted last night in a powerful presentation about the Commonwealth’s importance.

15 Nov 2017 description

Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland has called for increased funding to help member states rebuild their countries after natural disasters.

She was speaking at the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) side event at COP23 in Bonn, Germany, today.

20 Sep 2017 description

Commonwealth Secretary-General Patricia Scotland is convening a group of specialists from across the Commonwealth to examine how to “coordinate, create and shape a task force” to assist with mobilising international assistance to provide protection and assistance with recovery from the impact of violent storms and similar emergencies.

29 Jun 2017 description

The Commonwealth is hosting an online discussion on education for migrants and refugees for the first time on its Education Hub.

‘Education for Migrants and Refugees’ is the latest ‘eDiscussion’ topic on the Hub and has invited submissions from more than 800 education policymakers and professionals from across the 52 Commonwealth countries. It seeks to find ways to educate millions of displaced people facing some of the most challenging conditions.

19 May 2017 description

Climate change advocates welcome regenerative development approach

Small islands facing the threat of imminent extinction woke up this morning to a ray of hope following the launch of a “revolutionary” Commonwealth approach to climate change. It’s called “Regenerative Development” and it has the potential to reverse climate change through measures that take carbon out of the air and put it back in the soil. Yesterday, at a conference at Commonwealth Headquarters in London, activists and climate thinkers came together to chart the way ahead.

11 May 2017 description

The Commonwealth Secretariat is helping to create a toolkit that will assist countries to implement the historic Paris Agreement on climate change.

The Secretariat updated partners and country representatives at a meeting in Bonn this week organised by the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

Steven Malby, Head of Law Development at the Commonwealth said the new toolkit will provide countries with a comprehensive source of methodologies, good practice, and knowledge sharing on climate legislation.

05 Feb 2016 description

Parliamentarians from Commonwealth countries in Asia have adopted a declaration to safeguard and promote human rights, concluding a three-day seminar in Sri Lanka in which they agreed to form a regional grouping with a specific human rights mandate.

28 Nov 2015 description

Vulnerable small island states will have greater access to funds to tackle climate change through a new Commonwealth finance initiative.

Announced less than 48 hours ahead of the opening of the COP21 climate change summit in Paris, where world leaders will adopt a new climate accord, the Commonwealth Climate Finance Access Hub will help countries successfully bid for climate action funding.

28 Nov 2015 description

1 We, the Heads of Government of the Commonwealth’s 53 member states[i], represent in our diverse national circumstances and common purpose one third of the world’s population spread across all continents and oceans. Our countries include some of the largest, smallest, wealthiest, poorest and most vulnerable on the planet. We represent more than one quarter of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). Over half of us are least-developed countries, Small Island Developing States or both.

12 Feb 2013 description

The Commonwealth is working with its members in Africa on improving accountability and adherence to International Humanitarian Law

Even in times of war and conflict, countries are governed by international laws to minimise the suffering of civilians and those no longer taking part in hostilities.

30 Apr 2012 description

Meeting to discuss UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Making disability rights a reality: developing capacity, delivering equality – that is the focus of a one-day meeting to be held at Marlborough House, headquarters of the Commonwealth Secretariat and Commonwealth Foundation in London, UK, on 3 May 2012.

21 Mar 2012 description

‘Strengthening jurisprudence of equality on violence against women’

Judges and magistrates from fourteen Southern and Eastern African Commonwealth countries will meet in Gaborone, Botswana on 26 and 27 March 2012 to discuss strategies to strengthen judicial activism in cases of violence against women.

The meeting forms part of the work mandated by the Commonwealth Plan of Action (PoA) for Gender Equality 2005-2015.

31 Oct 2011 description

Commonwealth Heads of Government met in Perth, Australia, from 28 to 30 October 2011, under the theme ‘Building National Resilience, Building Global Resilience’.