What is International Women's Day and what is its history?
International Women's Day (IWD) is an annual event celebrated on 8 March worldwide. Its purpose is to celebrate the achievements of women in all spheres of life, from political to social, and take collective action to help build a more gender-equal world.
International Women's Day has its roots in the labour and suffrage movements of the early 1900s. The earliest celebration of International Women's Day was held on 19 March 1911 in Germany, Austria, Denmark and Switzerland where over one million people gathered to demand their right to vote and improved working conditions. Since that time, International Women’s Day has been observed globally with governments, organisations, communities and individuals taking part in activities which focus on a particular theme each year.
The United Nations has celebrated International Women’s Day since 1975 and declared the day as a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played extraordinary roles in advancing gender equality. Each year, IWD brings together governments, organisations, communities and individuals around the world to recognize the efforts of women from all walks of life and highlight the challenges that still remain.
IWD is a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. It serves as an opportunity to raise awareness and advocate for gender equality while recognizing and celebrating the role that women play in our societies. It is also a reminder to take action that will create tangible change so that we can build a world where everyone is treated equally regardless of their gender identity.
On this special day, let's join hands in celebrating the progress we have achieved for gender equality and commit ourselves to creating more opportunities for women everywhere.
Happy International Women's Day!