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Celebrating the women in your life: International Women's Day 2020
Today is International Women's Day! This is an important day of celebration that recognizes, appreciates and highlights the extraordinary women in your own lives and around the world. International Women's Day is instrinctly woven into the history of women's rights and is often described as the core of the movement, even today. IWD has been effective at sparking new social initiatives, raising awareness for the hardships that women face around the globe, and in providing key services. On top of all that, did you know that March is also International Women's History Month?
One of the services here at Waterloo that works towards those same goals is the Women’s Centre. However, instead of annually, this student-run service is active everyday to create a safe environment for women on campus! They describe themselves as a "intersectional feminist, sex-positive, body-positive, pro-choice organization that provides resources and support to people of all genders." Some of the resources they provide include free feminine hygiene products, peer support, and informational pamphlets. And that’s not even an exhaustive list!
How Can You Celebrate IWD?
A great place to start is to educate yourself on the many institutional and social barriers that hinder women, even to this day. Think about some of the amazing women in your life and make time to speak to them and really listen. Thank them or celebrate them for their accomplishments. This year's IWD theme is #EachforEqual, so try to think about how together we can work towards challenging stereotypes or breaking down those barriers to create a more harmonious world with gender equality.
You can also get involved by participating in campus events! Tomorrow, March 9 at 5 p.m., The Women's Centre is hosting their semi-formal Voices 2020 Launch Party. VOICES is their new magazine which works to highlight key women and raise awareness about systemic issues. You can learn more about the details of their events by visiting their Facebook page! [external link]
Take a second to self-reflect and think about how your attitudes and actions impact both the community that is UWaterloo and the world around you. Critically engaging with feminism will allow you to recognize how you are contributing to that movement and can help shape a more reflective future.
Want to Learn More About Extraordinary Women?
Are you worried that you’ve missed some core achievements or accomplishments of modern or historical women? There are many great resources online that highlight women in various fields of study, industry, nationality, media, and more. You can find a great overview of this on our Women’s Centre website. But there’s so much more out there, just waiting for you to find and read!
If you want to be part of the movement behind IWD or simply want to help create a safer environment for women on campus, there are many services and clubs that you can volunteer for. You can find a full list of our clubs and services on our website and a collection of employment and volunteer opportunities.