Monday, March 9, 2009

International Women's Day: March 8th

Yesterday, March 8th, was International Women's Day. IWD is now an official holiday in China, Armenia, Russia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Bulgaria, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Mongolia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan and Vietnam. The tradition sees men honouring their mothers, wives, girlfriends, colleagues, etc with flowers and small gifts. In some countries IWD has the equivalent status of Mother's Day where children give small presents to their mothers and grandmothers.

The 2009 Theme is: Women and men united to end violence against women and girls. I missed it, did you? A chance to celebrate myself and reach out to women around the globe, no less! Well, I am doing a belated recognition today and I invite you to join me if you missed it, too.

In fact, many events extend into this week - for example, Alice Walker is marching with Code Pink into the Gaza Strip as part of Women's Day to protest the destruction caused by Israel and hold the US government accountable.

Given that in the US alone, one out of every six American women have been the victims of an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime, and that globally, at least one in three women and girls is beaten or sexually abused in her lifetime, we all share the responsibility to continue to educate our communities about the cycle of violence and advocate for the victims who face so much shame in coming forward to challenge their attackers, whether the attackers are individuals or administrations.

Visit their site to learn more about Women's Day events, recent news about policy and legislation around the world to benefit women's issues, and to see what corporations sponsor Women's Day events

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