International Women’s Day (IWD) 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. Significant activity is witnessed worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women’s achievements or rally for women’s equality.

Marked annually on March 8th, IWD is one of the most important days of the year to:

  • celebrate women’s achievements
  • raise awareness about women’s equality
  • lobby for accelerated gender parity
  • fundraise for female-focused charities

The campaign theme for IWD 2021 is ‘Choose To Challenge’. A challenged world is an alert world. And from challenge comes change. So let’s all #ChooseToChallenge.

International Women’s Day has occurred for well over a century with the first gathering held in 1911. Learn more about the day’s timeline.

Purple, green and white are the colors of International Women’s Day. Purple signifies justice and dignity. Green symbolizes hope. White represents purity, albeit a controversial concept. The colors originated from the Women’s Social and Political Union (WSPU) in the UK in 1908.

International Women’s Day is not country, group, nor organization specific. No one government, NGO, charity, corporation, academic institution, women’s network, or media hub is solely responsible for International Women’s Day. The day belongs to all groups collectively everywhere. Gloria Steinem, world-renowned feminist, journalist and activist once explained “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.”  So make International Women’s Day your day and do what you can to truly make a positive difference for women.

Whether hosting an event, running a campaign, launching an initiative, reporting on achievement, donating to a female-focused charity, or more – there are many ways groups and individuals can mark the day.

Three central beliefs underpin and guide the purpose and provisions of the International Women’s Day website:

  • identifying, celebrating and increasing visibility of women’s achievements can help forge equality
    strategic collaborations based on a foundation of shared purpose, trust and appreciation can impact positive change for women
  • worldwide awareness raising via meaningful narratives, resources and activity can help combat gender bias and discrimination to accelerate gender parity
  • To support worldwide activity, the International Women’s Day website provides:

There’s no place for complacency. According to the World Economic Forum, sadly none of us will see gender parity in our lifetimes, and nor likely will many of our children. Gender parity will not be attained for almost a century.

There’s urgent work to do – and we can all play a part.

Image Sources

  • Women: Shutterstock