... Today is International Women's Day? It popped up on my Facebook feed the other day - a friend attending San Antonio's march downtown - and I had to admit that I had did not know the purpose or background of the day. Was this another "Hallmark" created day or is there something more there? (I should probably be embarrassed to admit my lack of knowledge on the topic!). So I went digging.
The first national women's day was celebrated in 1909 in the United States. The movement began to spread globally in 1911, but not celebrated by the United Nations until 1975. As a person entering this world in the last weeks of the 1970s, I've grown up with the idea that I may be treated slightly differently, but that my generation has a greater sense of parity with men.
Apparently, I'm not alone in this feeling. The International Women's Day website reports: "Many from a younger generation may feel that 'all the battles have been won for women' while many feminists from the 1970's know only too well the longevity and ingrained complexity of patriarchy." In fact, the World Economic Forum estimates the gender gap won't close entirely until 2133. Did that stop you in your tracks? I will likely have great-great grandchildren before women get paid the same wage for work as men.
With that in mind, this year's IWD theme is #PledgeforParity. They ask women and men to pledge to (1) help women and girls achieve their ambitions; (2) challenge conscious and unconscious bias; (3) call for gender balanced leadership; (4) value women's and men's contributions equally; and (5) create inclusive, flexible cultures.
I'm making my pledge to continue BCWB's legacy of working to help women and and girls achieve their ambitions. I'm so proud of the work this organization has done and continues to do in reshaping our environment.
It feels so fitting that 2016 will be our year to launch LEAD (Don't know what LEAD is? Look a few posts back!). I hope you will join me in #PledgeforParity.