Basics of the NGO CSW68 Forum:

The NGO CSW Forum is a civil society gathering that runs parallel to the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). It provides civil society the opportunity to engage with the CSW processes and sessions without any special qualifications (such as ECOSOC-accreditation). The NGO CSW Forum includes hundreds of events that inform, engage, and inspire grassroots efforts to empower women and girls. The Forum gives CSOs and NGOs an opportunity to host their own in-person or virtual Parallel Events as part of the two-week forum.

The UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) is the principal global intergovernmental body dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. During the two-week session, UN entities, Member States, and civil society assess progress and gaps in the implementation of women’s rights documents such as the Beijing Platform for Action. Each year, the Commission focuses on a specific theme related to gender equality, known as the ‘priority theme’ of CSW.

UN Women is the secretariat for the UN CSW, handling the logistics side of the Commission. For questions or concerns about the UN CSW, visit UN Women’s website or contact them at

The Commission of the Status of Women is made up of forty-five member states, consisting of one representative from each Member State based on equitable geographical distribution:

  • 13 members from Africa
  • 11 from Asia
  • 9 from Latin America & the Caribbean
  • 8 from Western Europe and other States
  • 4 from Eastern Europe

These representatives work in four year terms. For more information on the Commission and its members, please visit the UN Women’s website, or contact UN Women at

The CSW Bureau facilitates the preparation for the CSW and ensures the successful outcome of the session. The Bureau consists of five Member States, one representing each region. Bureau members serve two-year terms.

The Bureau for the UN CSW68 comprises the following members:

  • H.E. Mr. Antonio Manuel Revilla Lagdameo (Philippines), Chair (Asia and Pacific States Group)
  • H.E. Ms. María del Carmen Squeff (Argentina), Vice-Chair (Latin American and Caribbean States Group)
  • Mr. Māris Burbergs (Latvia), Vice-Chair (Eastern European States Group)
  • H.E. Ms. Yoka Brandt (Netherlands), Vice-Chair designate (Western European and Other States Group)
  • Ms. Dúnia Eloisa Pires do Canto (Cabo Verde), Vice-Chair designate, African States Group)

Learn more about the CSW Bureau on UN Women’s website.

The “Zero Draft” is the initial draft of the CSW Agreed Conclusions, which is prepared by the UN Secretary-General’s office and negotiated on during the UN CSW session. It usually comes out in January.

Parallel Events take place at the NGO CSW68 Forum and are hosted by civil society organizations or groups. They take place outside of the UN Headquarters, either in-person or virtually. Any civil society organization, coalition, or group is welcome to apply to host a Parallel Event regardless of their ECOSOC-accredited status or NGO CSW/NY membership.

Side events take place as part of the official UN CSW program and are hosted by Member States and UN agencies with ECOSOC-accredited organizations as partners. They take place inside of the UN HQ and require a UN grounds pass or special event ticket to attend. (Additionally, there will most likely be virtual side events which will be open to the public.) To host a side event at the UN CSW, ECOSOC-accredited organizations must partner with a Member State or UN agency who submits the proposal to UN Women. For more information about side events, visit UN Women’s website.

Throughout the two weeks of the NGO CSW68 Forum, we host hundreds of events and other engagement spaces. The hybrid NGO CSW68 Forum will include: 

  • In-Person and Virtual Parallel Events
  • Consultation Day
  • Conversation Circles
  • Orientation session
  • Advocacy Training session
  • Artisan Fair
  • Healing & Community Space
  • Regional Caucuses
  • In-person and virtual Exhibit Booths
  • Handbook Ads
  • Networking and advocacy
  • Youth Leaders & Young Professionals (YLYPs) events and activities

Parallel Events are hosted by NGOs and CSOs from around the globe during the NGO CSW Forum. They are one of the key components of the NGO CSW Forum, as they provide a space and voice for CSOs who may not have full access to the UN. Because they are outside the official UN CSW session, they are open to the public and free to attend. These events allow for education and galvanizing around different issues and topics within the feminist and women’s movement.

Learn more about hosting a Parallel Event and how to apply.

Apply to host a virtual or in-person Parallel Event during the NGO CSW68 Forum through an online application on our website. A $125 USD deposit is required upon application.

Learn more about hosting a Parallel Event and how to apply.

No. Any organization, coalition, group or campaign can apply to host a Parallel Event regardless of their ECOSOC or organizational status.

Learn more about hosting a Parallel Event and how to apply.

The YLYPs are a youth-specific space within NGO CSW/NY and the NGO CSW Forum. They host a Youth Preparation Series leading up to the NGO CSW Forum and the CSW. The program also hosts other professional development events throughout the year and shares information related to youth at the CSW and the UN system more broadly. The YLYPs are open to anyone under the age of 40.

Learn more, get involved, and join the community here.

The working language of the NGO CSW Forum is English. If Parallel Event organizers wish to have interpretation for their event(s), they are responsible for providing the interpretation service. NGO CSW/NY cannot provide interpretation services for any Parallel Events.

NGO CSW68 Forum Registration

Registration for the NGO CSW67 Forum will open in late November/early December. We will send an email to our mailing list and post on social media and our website when registration opens!

No. The NGO CSW68 Forum is totally free and open to the public! However, if you’d like to support our work, you can make a donation here.

No. Anyone can register and attend the NGO CSW Forum whether you’re part of an organization or not. The Forum is totally open to the public.

No. The UN CSW and NGO CSW68 Forum are two totally separate events. Registration for the NGO CSW68 Forum will not get you a UN grounds pass or access to the UN building.

For more information about official registration for the UN CSW, visit UN Women’s website.