On March 8th International Women’s Day will be celebrated across the world. The theme for 2017 is #BeBoldForChange and this Wednesday women will be celebrated for their economic, cultural, social, and political achievements. This is not only a time to reflect upon the progress that has been made toward gender equality, but to also #BeBoldForChange and fight for the acceleration of gender parity and the empowerment of women.
The main idea of the theme, #BeBoldForChange, seeks to accelerate the 2030 Agenda—
“an ambitious agenda that features 17 new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets that aim to end poverty, combat inequalities and promote prosperity while protecting the environment by 2030.” The campaign especially seeks to accelerate Sustainable Development Goal 5, which strives to attain gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls.
The celebration of International Women’s Day dates back to the early 1900s as the powerful Suffragettes took the initiative to advocate for gender equality. The Suffragettes created International Women’s Day and held their first event in 1911. Even though we have taken huge strides toward gender equality since the first International Women’s Day, we have a long way to go.
For example, striking gender disparities remain in the economic and political sectors. UN Women reports that “on average women in the labour market still earn 24 per cent less than men globally”—and for women of color the pay disparity is even more dramatic. “As of August 2015,” the UN Women report continues, “only 22 per cent of all national parliamentarians were female, a slow rise from 11.3 per cent in 1995.”
And to make matters worse, the Economic Forum predicts the gender gap will not completely close until 2186. But don’t grab that tissue box just yet—this is where International Women’s Day is a vehicle for greater change. Today is a day to acknowledge the inequalities and challenges women are facing and take action to create a more inclusive equal world.
Use this day to be bold, raise awareness, and fight for a gender equal world. And when the day is done, know that everyday is the perfect day to #BeBoldForChange!
Not sure what you can do to #BeBoldForChange on Wednesday?
Click here to find out ways that you can take action.
Click here to find events in your area that are happening on International Women’s Day!