MESSAGE FROM FOREIGN MINISTER JULIE BISHOP
WOMEN IN ROTARY, INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY BREAKFAST
2015 is a significant year for women's rights being the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action - an agreement adopted by the nations of the world to advance women's rights.
This year is an opportunity to celebrate the progress we have made and to continue striving for gender equality.
In my role as Australia's Foreign Minister, I have made the empowerment of women and girls in our region a priority in Australia's foreign policy and aid program. The Australian Government is investing in initiatives to enhance women's voices in decision-making, leadership and peace-building; to promote women's economic empowerment; and to end violence against women and girls.
I congratulate Women in Rotary for supporting women as members and leaders in Rotary and supporting women's participation in workplaces and cities.
Fundraising through this event will be used to support a reduction in family violence and to support adults and children with disabilities.
I wish you success with your International Women's Day Breakfast in Melbourne where your discussions on how gender equality benefits all will be of interest.
Empowering women delivers social and economic benefits to all societies. The evidence is clear - investing in women is not just the right thing to do - it is the smart thing to do.
Minister for Foreign Affairs