International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.
International Women’s Day (IWD) has been observed since in the early 1900’s – a time of great expansion and turbulence in the industrialized world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies. International Women’s Day is a collective day of global celebration and a call for gender parity. No one government, NGO, charity, corporation, academic institution, women’s network or media hub is solely responsible for International Women’s Day. Many organizations declare an annual IWD theme that supports their specific agenda or cause, and some of these are adopted more widely with relevance than others.
“The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights,” says world-renowned feminist, journalist and social and political activist Gloria Steinem. Thus International Women’s Day is all about unity, celebration, reflection, advocacy and action – whatever that looks like globally at a local level. But one thing is for sure, International Women’s Day has been occurring for well over a century – and continue’s to grow from strength to strength.
What values drive International Women’s Day?
International Women’s Day means different things to different people, but the global focus on equality and celebration is clear.
Throughout ancient and modern history, women have collaborated and lead purposeful action to redress inequality in the hope of a better future for their communities, children and themselves. Whether through bold well-documented action or through humble resistance that never made it into the history books, women have united for equality and achievement forever.
And along the way, one particularly powerful collaboration lead to the formation of a globally united moment for women across countries to come together in hope and action. That moment is “International Women’s Day”.
Started in the early 1900’s, the almighty and tenacious Suffragettes forged purposeful action for equality. It was the Suffragettes who started International Women’s Day, with the first officially named “lnternational Women’s Day” event held in 1911.
And still to this day, International Women’s Day continues to be a powerful platform globally that unifies tenacity and drives action for gender parity, while celebrating the social, cultural, economic and political achievements of women.
The specific values that drive International Women’s Day provide an important parameter for guiding the action, behaviours and ethos associated with this critical and globally-supported day.
The ten International Women’s Day values are:
For International Women’s Day 2017, we’re asking you to #BeBoldForChange.
Call on the masses or call on yourself to help forge a better working world – a more gender inclusive world.