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UNESCO and SONY ERICSSON WTA TOUR Global Partnership for Gender Equality

Quick link to this page: www.unesco.org/en/gender/wta-tour

<b>UNESCO and SONY ERICSSON WTA TOUR Global Partnership for Gender Equality</b>

UNESCO, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, and the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour, the world’s leading global sport for women, are collaborating in a landmark global partnership to further gender equality and promote women’s leadership in all spheres of society.

QUICK LINK: www.unesco.org/en/gender/wta-tour

The programme also represents the first time that UNESCO, the only organization of the UN system with a mandate for education, science and culture which are most critical for laying the grounds for gender equality, is partnering with a professional sports league for this objective embraced by all world leaders (2005 World Summit Outcome). UNESCO, with a Division specifically devoted to the promotion of gender equality and women's empowerment, is committed to mainstreaming gender equality considerations in all its programmes, globally and at the country level.

The social responsibility programme draws upon the history of the Tour and players in fighting for equality. The idea came about through the Iguales campaign at the Tour’s season-ending event in Madrid in 2005, and marks a new level of commitment by the Tour and players to raise awareness of gender equality issues, and advance opportunities for women.

Since its founding in 1973, the Sony Ericsson WTA Tour and its players have been leaders in fighting for equality, including most notably in the area of equal prize money at Roland Garros and Wimbledon. Billie Jean King, the founder of the Tour, also founded the Women’s Sports Foundation in 1974, a charitable educational organization dedicated to advancing the lives of girls and women through sports and physical activity.

The Sony Ericsson WTA Tour is the world’s largest premier professional sport for women with more than 1,300 players representing 75 nations competing for $60 million in prize money at the Tour’s 63 events in 35 countries. More than 4.5 million people attended women’s tennis events in 2005 with millions more watching events on television networks around the world.

Further information on the Tour can be found on their website: here.

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