International Women’s Day was first celebrated in 1908 when a group of 15,000 women marched on the streets of New York, demanding their rights to be fulfilled. In 1910, a woman called Clara Zetkin, leader of the ‘women’s office’ for the Social Democratic Party in Germany suggested that every country should celebrate women on one day every year to push for their demands. The first IWD to be officially recognized was in 1911. Since then every year on 8th March women across the world join hands to support, raise, inspire and motivate women. This year is the 106th. On this day many organizations around the world address issues specific to women to celebrate International Women Day by taking meaningful resolutions and work towards causes to uplift women.
While I sat down to write this post, on surfing the internet for the issues that were being addressed for women’s day this year I came across some highlights of this year’s theme that were thoughtfully addressed.
‘Be Bold For Change,’ by IWD encourages people to step up and take groundbreaking action to help drive gender equality. It is an active message that is likely to resonate with millions of women, girls and men who have taken to the streets to march this year, in opposition to divisive politics.
It set me thinking on how the UN theme of economic empowerment for women holds true for Indian women too. Women in India face a lot more challenges at work in terms of stability issues due the social mindsets and cultural practices in our country. Besides income imbalances and informal work profiles that often goes unrecorded, the expectations of her family as far as her personal priorities are concerned further contribute to roadblocks in her career.
It is observed that recruiters even in multinational companies often consider a woman’s marital status, her child-bearing age and other personal details of her background before shortlisting her for hiring, or if hired, even promotions are given after a lot of analysis of her background and in accordance to her longevity in the role. Sadly, for such women who work under employers with gender-biased mindsets, they often have to give into the situation and stall their professional aspirations to fulfill their personal responsibilities. The overall evolution of the working woman of today remains incomplete if these gaps are not filled up, going forward.
The 2017 UN theme for International Women’s Day, 8th March, focuses on ‘Women in the Changing World of Work: Planet 50-50 by 2030.’
In spite of the rate at which women are reaching pinnacles at work and with the advancing technological developments bringing in a host of new opportunities, there still remains an imbalance in the informal working pattern and income equality in general for women. Achieving gender equality in the world of work is imperative for sustainable development. The United Nation’s observance on 8th March at UN Headquarters will deliberate on ‘Women’s economic empowerment in the changing world of work.’
But with changing times, here comes a ray of hope for such women. Going with the theme of ‘Women in the Changing World of Work’ this Women’s Day, sees the launch of special avenue that women can leverage on. E-women is a portal that has been thoughtfully put together to address the issue of women’s empowerment at work. This portal is a resourceful platform that connects women with the right kind of recruiters suitable for their background to help them work from home. No matter where she is and how she plans to deliver her duties, this platform gives her the flexibility to balance both her professional and personal priorities from within the confines of her home with respect and complete independence. The portal authenticates the reliability of the employers and employees ensuring that the whole process of this arrangement is smooth and viable.
I am sure this comes in as good news to all those women who are trapped in the web of their personal commitments but dream about being economically independent some day without compromising on their other priorities. While family and children definitely come first, one can give their best to their loved ones only when they are happy with their own self first. On this note, this Women’s Day, let us pledge that we women work on our share of sunshine to further nurture our close ones with the wealth of our happiness drawn by realizing our dreams of economic independence. Happy Women’s Day!
Vinodini Iyer blogs at her blog: http://ifsbutsandsetcs.com. Please do visit to read more of her posts.