International Women’s Day (IWD) 2024
March 8, 2024
International Women’s Day celebrates women’s achievements and recognises the struggle for gender parity in societies around the world. It is an occasion that has a long history, stretching back over 100 years.
When is International Women’s Day?
International Women’s Day is annually celebrated on 8 March. The day is a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. It is also a call to action for accelerating gender equality. International Women’s Day has been observed since the early 1900s and is now celebrated in countries around the world.
What Is the History of International Women’s Day?
International Women’s Day began as a result of the labour movement at the turn of the 20th century. Its roots can be traced back to the granting of the vote to women in New Zealand in 1893. In 1904 the International Woman Suffrage Alliance was formed in Berlin, while in 1908, organised by the Socialist Party of America, 15,000 women marched through New York City demanding the right to vote, better wages, better working conditions, and an end to child labour.
As the years went by, other women’s rights movements around the world took up the same cause. In 1910 an International Socialist Women’s Conference was held in Copenhagen where it was proposed by German socialist, Clara Zetkin, a friend of Rosa Luxemburg, that an International Women’s Day should be held on 8 March each year. This was approved unanimously by the Conference, who wished to recognise the progress made by women in forcing changes to their disadvantages.
The first IWD was held on 19 March 1911, celebrated by more than a million people in Denmark, Germany, Switzerland and Austria.
IWD was made a national holiday in the USSR on on March 8, 1917 after which it was celebrated largely by the socialist movement and communist countries. It was adopted by the feminist movement in the late 1960s, and eventually by the UN in 1977.
Since then, International Women’s Day has become a global event, celebrated in countries around the world.
What is International Women’s Day?
The purpose of International Women’s Day is to celebrate women’s progress over the years and their current roles in society. It also serves to recognise the struggles that still exist for gender parity, and to promote the work that still remains to be done.
The issues addressed range from economic parity in wages and employment to access to education and political participation. In recent years, emphasis has also been placed on bringing attention to equality in areas such as health care, media representation, legal rights and more. Ultimately, International Women’s Day is a celebration of women’s achievements and a call for further action to ensure gender equality.
It is a reminder that there is still much work to be done to ensure that all women have access to the same rights and opportunities as men. By celebrating International Women’s Day, we can help to raise awareness of the issues that still need to be addressed and to inspire more people to take action to create a more equitable world for all.
Interesting facts about International Women’s Day
In 2013, former US President Barack Obama declared 8 March as National Women’s History Month in the United States of America, recognising the importance of celebrating the progress made by women in society. He also noted that “we can all take steps to ensure that the lessons of history are borne in mind today.” Since then, many countries across the world participate in varied events to recognise and show appreciation for women throughout history.
IWD is a great opportunity to recognise the achievements of women in all areas of life, from politics and business to science and the arts. It is also a chance to celebrate the progress that has been made in terms of gender equality and to raise awareness of the issues that still need to be addressed.