The President, with the support and advice of the Secretary of State,
often asks the First Lady to undertake overseas missions to promote American
values and interests around the world. Since 1993, Mrs. Clinton has visited
more than 60 countries as a means to achieve this objective.
As America's foremost ambassador, Mrs. Clinton has taken the
message of human rights, social development and empowerment of women around the
globe. During her trips abroad, she has advocated for equality in education for
girls and boys, meeting the critical health needs of women and children, access
to economic opportunity through small loans to start up businesses
(microcredit), and ensuring women an active role in the political life of their
societies. She and Secretary Albright have advanced these issues as essential
to the conduct of America's foreign policy.
The First Lady has also promoted the role of civil society and religious
tolerance, particularly in emerging democracies and countries with religious
minorities. Mrs. Clinton has led efforts in the Western Hemisphere to improve
the well being of children by inaugurating campaigns to eliminate measles,
reduce maternal mortality and advance education reform. She also leads the
Vital Voices initiative, which empowers women to make progress in
their economic, political and judicial systems through public-private
In taking her message across the globe the First Lady works closely with
U.S. government agencies, particularly USAID and the Department of State, as
well as with the United Nations, the World Bank, non-governmental
organizations, and U.S. foundations and businesses. Examples of Mrs.
Clinton's work include her human rights address to the U.N. Fourth World
Conference on Women in Beijing, her keynote address at the World Bank's
Summit on Safe Motherhood, and working with the World Health Organization on an
initiative to halt the spread of tuberculosis.