International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8th every year. It celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. However, women are still left behind in social, economic and political matters. This is often caused by conscious or subconscious bias against them. The theme for International Women’s Day 2022 is #BreakTheBias. Acknowledging that bias exists isn’t enough. We need to do more to challenge the bias. Whether you’re male or female, you can do your part to encourage girls and women to achieve their goals. Keen to get on board? Here are some ideas to get you started:
7 things you can do on International Women’s Day to Break the Bias
- Tell the women in your life how much you appreciate them for who they are and what they do. Your mother, grandmother, wife, sister, daughter, friend, aunt, niece, cousin, colleague, neighbour, teacher……the list goes on and on.
- Support the businesswomen in your community. Find out which local businesses are run by women and buy from them or recommend their services to friends. Talk to a local female service provider or business owner to offer your moral support.
- Take a moment to celebrate the achievements of women, including women of colour. Against all odds, these women have succeeded in arenas such as science, research, politics, music, arts, business and social justice.
- Be informed on issues women face – domestic violence, sexual harassment, mental illness, homelessness, reproductive health, etc. Do you know a girl or woman who may be in danger of facing one or any of these issues? Call the person to find out how she is.
- Find out which local organizations offer help to women facing difficulties. These include government or non-governmental organizations, social enterprises and grassroots support groups. You may not be able or qualified to assist, but you may know of an organization which can help.
- Invest some of your time, money or talent by volunteering at social organizations assisting women and children. These may be for one-off projects or require ongoing help – there is always a way to help that suits your lifestyle.
- Challenge the bias you or your friends have towards girls and women in various sectors. For example, many women face difficulties gaining success in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) fields because of deeply-ingrained bias by men AND women.
by Maureen Yeow