International Women’s Day: The Power of Young Women
Mandy Tsang and YesidLainez
Celebrating the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day, annually held on March 8th where women across the world come together to celebrate achievements, equality, justice, peace and development. Many countries such as Afghanistan, China, Cuba, Mongolia, Nepal, Russia, Uganda, Ukraine, Vietnam, Zambia and more, commemorate International Women’s Day as a national holiday. Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UN Women, emphasized earlier this week, that “No enduring solution to major changes of our day – from climate change to political and economic instability can be solved without the full empowerment and participation of world’s women. We simply can no longer afford to leave women out.”
Much progress has been made to protect and promote women’s rights in recent times, for instance, women’s economic power and health in Honduras and China have increasingly improved in the past 30 years. In Honduras, women-owned small businesses in tourism have increased, allowing the economic status of the country to develop. In addition, rural women in China have also benefitted from starting their own small agricultural businesses, as a result, gaining more profit compared to the income gained from working in factories. Regarding the topic of health, the government of Honduras is providing free sex education and mammograms for women in need. At the same time, due to the Family Planning Law in China, the government emphasizes the health of young girls by providing benefits to families with only daughters. Significant growths have been made worldwide, but much more accomplishments can be initiated to promote the empowerment of women and to protect the rights of women.
As Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon also highlighted at a conference earlier this week on bridging the gender gap in the work place to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, “We cannot achieve sustainable development at corporate or global level without empowering world’s women.”
Young women, can also contribute to International Women’s Day by raising national and international awareness of the different projects and campaigns that commit to the promotion of women empowerment and rights. Contributions can be made every day by means of speech and the power of social media. Sharing interesting and new information about these issues is crucial to spread awareness in celebrating the achievements of women worldwide as we continue to work towards promoting gender-equality for future generations.