International Women’s Day (IWD) is officially March 8th, today. But its celebrations often occur the previous weekend, as they did in my home town.
180 women, young and old, U.S. and Foreign Nat’ls–and all were full to bursting with enthusiasm–came together for our community’s 22nd Annual Women’s Day Breakfast last Saturday.
These events typically have one or more keynote speakers sharing about their experiences. This year, the program was a little different with bringing the celebration of women closer to home, in recognizing women in our lives and communities who have made small and larger differences in our world.
The women discussed and praised by us were civil rights leaders and advocates, women’s mentors, professors, women’s organizations representatives, mayors and other government officials, artists. scholarship winners, media talents, etc.,–many of us thinking about some of the same women from our community.
It was a lovely twist to the usual program–by inviting us to engage and interact with each other in small group discussions to identify and talk about important women in our lives and community. And I met 7 new people around my table–two of whom also worked at my university.
The discussion made us all remember that every person has the capacity and the opportunity to impact and change the world around us in small and large ways, one person at a time.
And as the saying goes, think globally and act locally.
So my contribution to this year’s International Women’s Day event was to bring as my guest a young lady from Asia who is attending graduate school in our town–and who is applying for a scholarship that my international women’s organization supports and distributes. We’re keeping our fingers crossed for her.
This past year in the U.S. and around the world has seen a lot of upheaval and push for change revolving around women’s equality/equity and the right for respect. And the United Nations shared how this year’s IWD theme meshes with this:
“The theme for International Women’s Day, 8 March, is “Time is Now: Rural and urban activists transforming women’s lives”.
This year, International Women’s Day comes on the heels of unprecedented global movement for women’s rights, equality and justice. This has taken the form of global marches and campaigns, including #MeToo and #TimesUp in the United States of America and their counterparts in other countries, on issues ranging from sexual harassment and femicide to equal pay and women’s political representation.”
And to end on an even brighter note, just when we feel that corporate American isn’t responsive to the needs of every day people, we see the Barbie doll company begin to roll out commemorative role model dolls about Emelia Earhart, Frida Kahlo, Katherine Johnson (below)and others who have and are making a difference in our world:
Wishing you a wonderful International Women’s Day! Hugs!