This past year, we are able to look back and see that time and time again that women have made history. Not only did we see the first Black woman and first Asian-American woman become Vice President, but we have also seen many women obtain significant achievements, including leading the charge in creating successful vaccines during the pandemic, setting records in space, gaining more diverse representation in government, and the list goes on and on. Women are helping lead the charge in creating positive impacts in our society, and as we head into Women’s History Month and celebrate International Women’s Day, it’s time to start to thinking about how we can celebrate women’s achievements throughout history.
This year, themes for both Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day focus on uplifting women, equality, raising awareness, along with providing recognition of the achievements made. Extending celebrations for the women’s suffrage centennial, this year the Women’s History Month theme will focus on “Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to be Silenced in 2021.” It’s a month to recognize the courageous women who have helped shape our history, and who have allowed us to get to the point where women voters were able to drive the outcome of an election.
Also, with International Women’s Day (IWD) quickly approaching, it’s important to take the time to learn about their #ChoosetoChallenge campaign. This campaign is extremely timely and is important to understand that we need to continue to challenge and “call out gender bias and inequality.” We as a society need to do better. We have to keep moving towards inclusivity, call out and challenge stereotypes and bias, and work day by day to make sure we are listening and educating ourselves. It might just be “one day,” but this message is important to continue and rings true every day.
If you don’t know where to start joining in on this year’s celebrations, here are some things to consider to help celebrate women’s equality, some of which you can view on the IWD site. These include but are not limited to attending a IWD virtual event or other virtual events during Women’s History Month (like with the National Women’s History Museum), consider donating to a female focused charity, supporting and celebrating women’s work in underrepresented roles, working to build inclusive workspaces, and taking the time to educate yourself on women’s history and rights, as well as celebrating women-owned businesses.
There is still a long way to go in fighting for equality for women. As we move forward, it’s important to recognize the significant impact they make in our society and that this is one of the many reasons why we need to continue to make strides in changing the inner workings of how our systems operate. So this month, and hopefully every month, make sure to take the time to listen and understand the challenges being faced, and contribute to efforts to do better.