A farmer passes through a corn farm damaged by typhoon Ompong (Mangkhut) in Cagayan. (Photo: Denvie Balidoy/Oxfam)
It is unfortunate that we begin the New Year with the news that the Philippines failed to submit its Nationally Determined Contribution to the Paris Climate Agreement and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
 “The strength of my resolve to champion the rights of young women and girls is far greater than any fear of challenging long-held cultural practices or beliefs. If we will not stand up for our human rights, who else will?”, said campaigner Sittie Mohamad of Al-Mujadilah Development Foundation, a women’s rights organization based in Lanao del Sur campaigning to end child marriage in the Philippines. (Photo was taken in March 2020, before the Covid-19 lockdown) Photo Credit: Vina Salazar/Oxfam
Girls have been given much reason to hope in the Philippines. This November, a historic first, the Senate unanimously approved the Girls Not Brides bill, which proposes to criminalize child marriage .
Illustration by Vina Salazar/Oxfam
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, women's choices and rights to sexual and reproductive health (SRH) care have been deprioritized and ignored.