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Minister Brophy commits to deepening Irish Aid partnership with UN Women

Minister of State for Overseas Development Aid and the Diaspora, Colm Brophy, T.D., today committed to deepening Irish Aid’s partnership with UN Women.

Speaking at an online gathering of UN Women and partners hosted by Ireland from Dublin Castle, Minister Brophy announced that Ireland will increase its support to the agency’s work in promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment, in particular to respond to COVID-19.

Minister Brophy said:

“Ireland’s international development policy, A Better World, has gender equality at its heart. It is central to the transformation required to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and reach the furthest behind first. UN Women’s role in this is key, as well as being essential to the continued focus on gender equality as the world responds to COVID-19. 

UN Women is a key partner of Irish Aid as we invest in gender equality and respond to the challenges which the pandemic presents to women and girls. That is why this year Ireland will increase its funding to UN Women by almost 60%, to €4.8 million in 2021. This includes both core funding and direct support from Ireland’s Embassies for UN Women’s work on the ground.”

UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo Ngcuka, who also participated in the online meeting, said:

“Ireland’s support to UN Women has been vital to our work in tackling gender inequalities and empowering women and girls around the world, including those facing devastating poverty, conflict and violence. The increased contribution will ensure that we can continue these critical efforts and support a COVID recovery in 2021 that is gender-responsive and that creates a better, more equal world for all.”

The pandemic has seen an increase in gender-based violence, the limiting of access to services and economic opportunities, and increased care work responsibilities, all of which have had a disproportionate impact on women.



29  JANUARY 2021

Notes for Editors

Irish Aid is the Government’s overseas aid programme. It is managed by the Development Cooperation and Africa Division of the Department of Foreign Affairs. For further information see

Amongst OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) members, Ireland has among the highest proportion of bilateral Overseas Development Assistance targeting gender equality – 76% in 2019.

UN Women is the United Nations entity dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide, and has a mandate to develop the international normative framework on gender equality, to coordinate the UN system to advance gender equality, and to implement operational activities to further gender equality. Ireland has funded UN Women since its inception and is UN Women’s 20th largest core contributor.

On 28-29 January 2021, Ireland hosts the second annual UN Women Partner Roundtable, bringing together UN Women’s key partners to discuss the strategic direction of the agency in the coming period. The event is virtual, anchored in Dublin Castle and features contributions from Minister for Foreign Affairs, Simon Coveney, T.D., Minister of State for Overseas Development and the Diaspora, Colm Brophy, T.D., and Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

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