So, today is International Women’s Day.
It is a day that places women centre stage globally, and celebrates the vast contributions that women make in every aspect of society.
To me, being a happy, healthy, fulfilled, woman, means the following:
- Being able to pursue dreams and ambitions without fear of persecution.
- Being able to have a say in how our government is run.
- Having access to healthcare no matter what our situation.
- Being free to walk the streets safely and without feeling threatened.
The reality is that still, all over the world, women and girls are denied the opportunity to fulfil their potential, and are denied the right to personal safety and health, simply because they are born female.
To say this sucks is clearly an understatement.
What are YOU doing to support it? Tough question huh? How can little old me make a difference?
Well you sure can, by doing one of the following 5 things:
1. Embrace ‘feminism’.
Let’s get one thing straight: Feminism is not a dirty word. If you agree that men and women should be treated equally, at home, in the workplace, in fact, in any aspect of day-to-day life, then yes, you are a feminist. This does not mean stomping all over men, but the desire to stand equally, alongside them. There is a definite resurgence in feminism, and all for the better. Wear your feminist badge with pride!
2. Join an online campaign
How lucky are we to have the amazing tool that is the internet? A campaign, or a cause’s best friend. In this age of social media, informative websites, blogs and online petitions, we have the ability to make a change like never before. Activism via social media is awesome, and an incredible way to engage with the world.
Annie, from Mammasaurus blog, has been a big supporter of International Women’s Day, and is currently in Tanzania for Sport Relief. There she is also looking at how women there have successfully set up businesses, and the challenges that still face them. Go to her fabbo blog and check out her posts, and also support and shout out on Twitter, by using #lastingchange and #IWD2014
3. Go to an event
Museums, local councils, and communities all around the country are finding different ways to celebrate with workshops, seminars, craft sessions or great talks from inspirational speakers. Try googling your nearest city and see what you can find.
4. Be a great example
As the mother of a daughter, (albeit a currently tiny one!), I want to set a good example. I want to show her that she can be who she wants to be, and have any career she wants, providing she works hard. I want her to know that she can be strong, kind, passionate and outspoken, all at the same time, without fear. I want to show her she can have confidence in who she is, and form healthy relationships with others without compromising herself. I want her to know how lucky she is to have these opportunities, and encourage her to stand up for those less fortunate and weaker than herself, to have a VOICE. I want her to know she matters. My children are my inspiration, and I’d love them to find me inspiring too.
5. Celebrate the women in your life.
Come on- we ALL know lots of inspiring, interesting, kind and thoughtful women who make our lives better. It could be your mum, elderly relative, best friend, work colleague, community activist… whoever it is, use today as an excuse to tell them how great you think they are. Buy them flowers, take them out for coffee, give them a squeeze- the choice is yours!
Can you think of any other ways to support #IWD2014? I’d love to hear them!