Denmark Passes the Baton to Canada to Serve as Host Country for World's Largest Conference on the Health, Rights and Wellbeing of Girls and Women

At United Nations General Assembly Event, Denmark and Canada Celebrate Women Deliver’s Past and Future Conferences

Passing the Women Deliver Torch from Denmark to Canada
Denmark’s Minister of Development Cooperation Ulla Tørnæs with Canada’s Minister, International Development Marie-Claude Bibeau

New York, NY, 19 September 2017 – At an event held during the 72nd annual United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Denmark symbolically passed the baton to Canada to serve as host country for the next Women Deliver Conference, the world’s largest conference on gender equality and the health, rights, and wellbeing of girls and women. The conference will bring over 6,000 world leaders, influencers, advocates, academics, activists, and journalists from more than 160 countries to Vancouver from 3-6 June 2019. Women Deliver – a leading, global advocate for girls and women – has been hosting the Women Deliver Conference every three years, since 2007.

At the UNGA event, Denmark’s Minister of Development Cooperation, Ulla Tørnæs, symbolically passed the baton – a Women Deliver ceramic arrow – to Canada’s Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau. The ministers were joined by Gender Equality Advocate and Deliver for Good Influencer Ms. Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, Women Deliver’s President/CEO Katja Iversen, and Women Deliver Young Leaders Olaoluwa Abagun and Dakshitha Wickremarathne.

“Both Canada and Denmark are some of the world’s leaders when it comes to investing in and empowering girls and women,” said Katja Iversen, President/CEO of Women Deliver. “Today doesn’t just mark the passing of host country duties, but also serves as an important moment to double down on their commitment to women’s rights, gender equality, and sexual and reproductive health and rights – at home and in their foreign policy and development assistant.”   

The Women Deliver 2019 Conference will come at a time when support for the health, rights, and wellbeing of girls and women is more critical than ever. The conference will present new knowledge, promote world class solutions, and serve as a fueling station for action, energy, investment and policy change. It will continue the momentum generated at the Women Deliver 2016 Conference, held in Copenhagen, Denmark – one of the first major global conferences following the launch of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). During Women Deliver 2016 – more than 100 solutions were presented to improve the lives of girls and women, and spur action across the globe.

“Denmark is already looking forward to WD2019 in Vancouver. We will play our part in making it a success. We will be there to continue the fight for women’s health, rights and wellbeing. We will continue to deliver!” – Denmark’s Minister of Development Cooperation, Ulla Tørnæs

The Women Deliver 2019 Conference will engage a broad spectrum of voices, including indigenous populations, youth, and those impacted by conflict, with an additional 100,000 participants anticipated to be joining virtually or in satellite events.

“Women Deliver 2019 is not just a one-off conference. It is a movement to empower women and girls and build a better world. It is an honour and an opportunity for Canada to be the next host!” – Canada’s Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau

“Vancouver 2019 will be an amazing opportunity to reunite thousands of advocates from across the world to speak freely and truthfully about the difficult issues that must be addressed. Together, we will work to achieve real progress for women everywhere. Because when men and women are treated equally, everyone wins.” – Gender Equality Advocate and Deliver for Good Influencer, Ms. Sophie Grégoire Trudeau

Patrick Robison of Elkhart Lake, WI and Marilyn Windau of Sheboygan Falls, WI collaborated to design and create the golden ceramic arrow for Women Deliver that the two ministers exchanged. Robison has over 40 years of teaching experience in ceramics with middle school, college, and adult students. He creates garden sculptures and owns a gallery and sculpture garden in Elkhart Lake. Windau taught elementary and middle school art for 25 years, makes books ceramic covers and other ceramic functional pieces, and is a published poet of three manuscripts, one self-illustrated.

Women Deliver is seeking suggestions on topics to be covered and speakers to be featured at the conference. People can submit their ideas or learn more about Women Deliver 2019 at

About Women Deliver: As a leading, global advocate for the health, rights, and wellbeing of girls and women, Women Deliver brings together diverse voices and interests to drive progress for gender equality, with a particular focus on maternal, sexual, and reproductive health and rights. We build capacity, share solutions, and forge partnerships, together creating coalitions, communication, and action that spark political commitment and investment in girls and women.

Learn more at


September 21, 2017