March 8th is International Women’s Day, a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. It is also an opportunity to raise awareness for the need to create real change. The movement is aiming high: challenging conscious and unconscious bias, valuing women’s contributions equally with men’s and committing to helping girls and women to achieve their goals are just a few of the objectives. This year’s campaign theme is #BeBoldForChange, a call to help forge a better working environment and a more gender inclusive world.
“Each one of us – with women, men and non-binary people joining forces – can be a leader within our own spheres of influence by taking bold pragmatic action to accelerate gender parity.” Before you think, “But what can I do? What difference can I make?” remember that the key is to take action within your own sphere of influence. Each step we take has the potential to create a ripple effect, with an impact that is more far-reaching than we anticipate. Something as simple as speaking openly to your daughter, sister, friend or co-worker about women’s struggles and the challenges we have faced to overcome obstacles can inspire, support and drive change.
Here are a few things you can do today to #BeBoldForChange:
- Challenge bias and inequality by pointing out bias and highlight alternatives in the workplace
- Campaign against violence by educating youth about positive relationships and volunteering your time at a local charity
- Forge women’s advancement by supporting a woman-owned business or mentoring another woman
- Celebrate women’s achievements by applauding women role models and fighting for fair recognition and credit for women’s contributions
- Champion women’s education by donating to charities that promote education for girls and by encouraging more young women to consider studies in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM)
The World Economic Forum predicts that gender parity won’t occur for another 170 years. There’s much work to be done.