02/15/2014 09:13 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

The Week In Stories That Actually Mattered: February 9-16, 2014


From the new U.N. report on women's rights, to Ben Affleck and Matt Damon's hilarious video for a cause, to ways you can make a difference, here is your round-up of this week's stories of impact from around the web.

1. Hillary Clinton Sees a Problem With Global Women's Empowerment, So She's Doing Something About It

"Hillary Rodham Clinton is launching a new global review of data to analyze the advancement of women and girls around the world since the mid-1990s." Read the rest of the story from HuffPost.

2. Ben Affleck, Matt Damon Battle it Out for a Good Cause


"Let's call it bromancing for charity. Ben Affleck and Matt Damon are auctioning off the chance to spend some time with the BFF Hollywood power couple, via It will only cost you $10 per entry, which will be donated to either the Eastern Congo Initiative (Affleck’s pick) or (Damon’s pick), to score the double date." Read the rest of the story from Mashable.

3. New Global Study Reveals Number of Female Sexual Assault Victims

"Worldwide, one woman in 14 has been sexually assaulted by someone other than a partner, according to the first global estimate of the problem, published on Wednesday. Its authors said that despite important gaps in data, the overall picture was clear: sex attacks on women are a big and widely overlooked problem." Read the rest of the story from HuffPost.

4. Prison Gardens Grow New Lives for Inmates

"While Waitkus spends her time in San Quentin teaching inmates how to plant flowers, take care of soil and prune plants, she also keeps the connection strong once they leave prison. Nationally, the recidivism rate is more than 60 percent, according to the 2011 Annual Recidivism Report. For garden prisoners at San Quentin, Waitkus said the return rate is less than 10 percent, and most other prison gardens report return rates in the single digits." Read the rest of the story from ABC News.

5. Progress Is "Unequal And Fragmented" for Women: U.N. Report

female sexual assault victims

"Though fewer women are dying during childbirth and access to education has increased in the past 20 years, many of these gains are not reaching women living in the world’s poorest communities, a new U.N. report concluded." Read the rest of the story from HuffPost.

6. Finding and Crunching the Numbers to Make the Economic Case for Women’s Rights

"If countries can't be convinced to invest in the welfare of women and girls because it's the right thing to do, they might be persuaded by numbers that prove that it's the smart thing to do for their societies and their economies. But, such numbers are in short supply globally." Read the rest of the story from Reuters Foundation.

7. The New King and Queen of Philanthropy

"Mark Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, were the most generous American philanthropists in 2013, with a donation of 18 million shares of Facebook stock, valued at more than $970 million, to a Silicon Valley nonprofit in December." Read the rest of the story from HuffPost.

8. Livia Firth on Remembering the Faces Behind Our Clothes

livia firth

"Handprint is a powerful short film, shot by director Mary Nighy, which compels viewers to confront the origins of their clothes." Read the rest of the story from Reuters Foundation.

9. Here Are 9 Ways You Can Help Support LGBT Equality in Russia During the Sochi Olympics

"Viewers of the Sochi Winter Olympics have the opportunity to send a clear message to the LGBT community in Russia: while their cause might not be seen, it has not been silenced." Read the rest of the story from HuffPost.

10. U.N. Urges Egypt to Release Foreign Journalists

"The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has called for the release of foreign journalists, including Australian Peter Greste, who is detained in Egypt. Greste, 48, and two al-Jazeera English network colleagues were arrested at a Cairo hotel on December 29 on suspicion of broadcasting false news in the service of the blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood." Read the rest of the story from The Guardian.