On Sunday 8 March, people around the world will celebrate International Women’s Day- 24 hours dedicated purely to championing women’s achievements, empowering others and challenging gender bias, in the workplace and everyday life.
We will see thousands of powerful women march for equality, an example being the March4Women protest, spanning across waters from London to New York, even as far as Melbourne, Australia. All with the same drive for gender equality.
International Women’s Day is all about unity, celebration, reflection and advocacy for action to change. In this blog post, we are going to explore all things women: from boss female leaders and empowering Instagrammers, to celebrating the achievements women have made in the past year. Let’s continue to celebrate women: all day, everyday.
“The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organisation but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights.”
A Brief History
International Women’s Day (IWD) has been observed since the early 1900s. After a long history of oppression, unrest and inequality, a critical debate was rising in women, and the passion to demand change grew stronger. It was in 1908, when women took it upon themselves to march for their rights, gathering 15,000 women uniting to march through New York, with the premise to demand shorter hours, better pay and voting rights.
Later on, in 1914, a new date was fixed, and the 8th of March became the official day to celebrate the first ‘International Women’s Day’.
Hear Our Voice
When girls, adolescents, and women are healthy, safe, educated and empowered, they can generate a significant butterfly effect. They can work to lift their children out of poverty, enhance global health, and instantly grow economies. Here are 5 facts about women around the world that will inspire you to take action this March 8 on International Women’s Day.
- According to Heart of Leadership, “80% of all purchasing decisions are made by women”.
- According to UNESCO, “if all women had a secondary education, child deaths would be cut in half, saving 3 million lives.
- According to the World Food Programme, “When a crisis hits, women are generally the first to sacrifice food consumption, in order to protect the food consumption of their families.”
- According to UNESCO, “Almost 60% fewer girls would become pregnant under 17 years in Sub-Saharan Africa and West Asia if they had a secondary education.
- Women make nearly 20% less than men, and they won’t reach pay equity with men until 2059, if the slow pace of progress on the pay gap persists.
With all the turmoil in the world, it’s easy to forget the groundbreaking progress women have made. Let’s take a moment to reflect on all the great achievements women have made in the past year:
- Saudi Arabia lifted travel restrictions on women, granting them the access to drive, without the supervision of a male relative.
- Ireland lifted restrictions on abortion, following the 2018 referendum.
- In April it became illegal to practice ‘up-skirting’ in England and Wales. Offenders can now face jail time for their offences.
- Kenya’s High Court ruled that rape survivors have the right to an abortion and ordered authorities to pay almost $30,000 in damages to the mother of a teenage victim who died after a botched abortion.
- Britain pledges 2 million pounds to organisations working to end ‘Period Poverty’ by helping women and girls access sanitary products and tackle the stigma around menstruation.
- Pakistan set up more than 1000 courts dedicated to tackling violence against women.
Cheers to continuing to make even more advancements in 2020!
Powerful Female Businesswomen You Need To Know
As IWD is all about celebrating women, we think it wouldn’t be right unless we show some appreciate to the boss businesswomen in the world. Here are our Top 3 businesswomen you need to know:
Jessica Alba Co-Founder of The Honest Company
The honest company is baby and beauty store that brings innovative formulas and thoughtful designs to all of beauty and baby products. Jessica has grown the company to over 500 employees in only 9 years, and has expanded to stock in big retailers such as Costco, Nordstrom and Wholefoods. Jessica has gone above and beyond to shown her employees appreciation by granting 16 weeks parental leave, instead of the mandatory 10 weeks.
Tory Burch, Founder of Tory Burch TLC
Tory Burch is an American fashion designer, businesswoman and philanthropist. She is the executive Chairman and Chief Creative Officer of her own brand, Tory Burch LLC, turning over 3 billion dollars yearly with 160 stores, making her a self-made billionaire. She also launched the Tory Burch Foundation, set up to support fellow women entrepreneurs helping raise capital and mentorship.
Sarah Blakely, Founder and Owner of SPANX
Sara was named the youngest self made billionaire in 2012, after only 8 years of launching Spanx, the leading shape-wear brand designed to empower and bring confidence to women. Sara also set up the Sara Blakely Foundation in 2006, with the initiative to “help women globally and locally through education and entrepreneurship”.
Inspirational Instagram Accounts To Follow
We’ve complied a list of our favourite Instagrammers, who empower thousands of women on the daily, whilst simultaneously spreading positivity and love. Here’s our top 5 picks:
Chessie King is our Instagram big sister/best friend. She has become an inspiration to so many people due to her honest and open attitude to life with her realistic, unedited images and body confidence posts. Chessie also visits schools and colleges to educate the next generation on body positivity and self love.
Lottie Drynan, also more frequently known as The Tummy Diaries, uses her Instagram platform to share her experiences living with IBS, working towards removing the stigma of stomach illness. Her content also includes amazing gluten free recipes, and unedited real-life moments.
Mel Wells is an author, public speaker and wellness coach who advocates self love and happiness. Her mission is to challenge negative mindsets towards body image, and shares inspirational and loving content to promote this. She talks openly about her past experiences with eating disorders, and how she has grown to love the skin she is in. Follow her for some much needed TLC and Bali-Life envy!
British Actress Emma Watson is a voice for women across the globe, she has recently been appointed as UN Women Goodwill Ambassador, alongside successfully graduating from Browns University. Emma is an advocate for UN women’s HeForShe campaign, powering to promote gender equality.
Grace is a fashion, beauty and lifestyle Youtuber with 200,000 loyal followers. The self-professed ‘internet’s big sister’ covers all topics from eating disorders, to mental health, and posts regularly supporting body positivity. Grace is currently training to become a therapist, and hopes to soon set up her own clinic.
Girls Support Girls
Here at Hirestreet, we believe in the empowerment of Women, encouraging them to achieve their dreams and maximum potential. By providing thousands of women with premium dresses for all occasions, we hope to fill our female customers with confidence, as when you feel your best, you look your best.
We continue to support female empowerment by choosing to work with inspirational influencers, who are great role models for women everywhere. An example being the gorgeous The Tummy Diaries and Hazel Wallace (The Food Medic).
We are incredibly lucky to have a female founder and CEO, who inspires us everyday with her hard work and determination. As well as our Head of Marketing, Head of Operations and Head Buyer, who take Hirestreet from strength to strength on the daily.
We hope to continue to support women in the future by continuously providing new stock, sharing our gorgeous customer images and spreading positivity throughout. Let’s make this IWD the biggest yet- happy celebrating!