Happy International Women’s Day! We have come a long way ladies, and still, we have so far a way to go.
This day is celebrated every year on March 8th in an effort to celebrate, acknowledge and appreciate the achievements of women. But that is not all. We also use this day to examine work that still needs to be done.
Why do we need to celebrate this in 2018 you ask? Well, according to the UN, globally women make 77 cents for every dollar made by a man. For the same work. And under 23% of women occupy parliamentary seats globally and less than 5% are in board rooms.
Women today still suffer greatly from lack of access to basic needs like education, health care and social services. Not to mention the beast that is violence against women. I could write a million words on all the ways women and girls are abused every single day. When we look at sexual harassment, domestic violence, rape, child abuse, child marriage and so on, we could talk about this for miles.
But alas, I’d leave that for another day. Today we’re here to celebrate the strides we’ve made and see how we can help the cause.
Give back to other women | Get involved in the activities of a local NGO or other Civil Society Organization that you trust. Seek out those that empower and support women’s rights and whatever you can give, will be greatly appreciated. It’s about reaching out and supporting women in your community who need your help and support.
Attend an International Women’s Day event in your area | Seek out events that are happening in your area and take some friends with you. There are a myriad of things happening, like networking events, runs, concerts, art exhibitions and more. Find the event you feel most comfortable and valuable and be a voice.
Educate yourself | Knowing about the struggles women have faced for millennia and looking at where we are today (whether in a good or a bad way) gives perspective and context to our cause. It was due to my yearning for knowledge and my own digging around in the wealth of information that exists, that caused me to join the response. The information you will find will stop you in your tracks. I guarantee you’ll see everyday people, politicians, celebrities and more, fighting for gender equality.
Be a Mentor | To successfully change the script of gender equality, we need to change mindsets, our value systems and our norms. The sooner we get our young ones involved, the better for us. Yes, be there for young girls and lead by examples but don’t forget the boys. We can’t achieve our goal with women and girls alone. We need men and boys to be a part of the discussion. Our movement must be relevant to them too.
Support other women | There are a vast number of female entrepreneurs and it’s a damn good idea to support them. Not only today but every day. Purchase a piece of art or visit a gallery, book a table at the establishment of a female restauranteur, support a local female designer. We’re out there making a name for ourselves and it’ll be great to have that extra support.
Treat yourself and the ones closest to you with kindness | We all love a treat every now and again. Even if that means getting a phone call or text saying ‘I love you’ or ‘Thanks for being a friend’. You don’t need to do much or spend what you don’t have. You can just send flowers, buy a card, and share some chocolates, anything at all. Because no matter what, anything given with love and kindness, will suffice.
Accept that change takes time | Let’s not only look at the trials and tribulations that await us in the future, but also the progress that we have made. My mother always said a little goes a long way and in this case, it truly does.
By the way, check out these compelling books by women and also take a look at this app that helps us keep fit. It’s a charity virtual walk/run to raise funds in commemoration of National Pi Day (March 14th) and Women’s History Month. Funds raised will benefit Girls Who Code. Get more information here!
What are you doing this year for International Women’s Day? I’m thinking of either treating the women at my adult literacy class or my colleagues at work.
PS ~ 7 Fun (and Cheap) Things to do With Friends and What’s Your Work-Life Balance Like?
Published: March 8, 2018 6:00 AM