International Women's Day 2014

By Dave Armstrong - 08 Mar 2014 9:23:0 GMT
International Women's Day 2014

This is for the ladies, women and girls who can celebrate today with a get-together and for those who can't; IWD image; Credit: © Shutterstock

The 1996 date of the first UN international women's day might seem somewhat delayed. The beginnings of any women's movement, if you check, are all quite late in history, considering the queens, politicians and even popes that we have had. The Ukraine was one of the latest nations to show up that other sex in their recent attempt to get rid of exploitation of women. The UN itself is concentrating this year on progress towards equality for women. In the past the violence committed against women and the equal access the female gender needs to education and training has been emphasised. The investment that is proposed in women is both economically and morally valuable.

While countries such as Bulgaria and Romania regard IWD as a kind of Mothers' Day, this is one of those days where history takes a hand nationally. Armenia still insists on calling it Beauty and Motherhood day, which isn't quite the point. Although it took until the 20th century till anybody really took up the cudgels, the suffragettes and many revolutionaries owe their beginnings to women. The earliest date mentioned is 1857, when some groups began sticking up for women's rights, but what we know for sure is that the process of "equalising" women is far from over.

Italy has a refreshing approach, with mimosa flowers chosen as the symbolic gift to women. Along with the inevitable chocolates, mimosa also figures in Albania and Russia. However, it is in countries where women face cultural restrictions that this day really needs to be celebrated. Poverty exists beyond the internet, and within its users, and 70% of those persons are female. Fundraising is essential according to Oxfam, where women are repressed by their lack of work or low wages. In too many countries the outdated communist regimes were linked to IWD, causing a lack of cooperation that still lingers. Religious bias of course is one of the main restrictions on women. It is urgent that women believe that religion cannot be a barrier for them.

As we're on Facebook, here's one of the links in every country to IWD, where you can find a happy vid on "Women Make It Happen!" - International Women's Day on Facebook.

Let's make it a good day, Ladies!