Why International Women's Day Matters
Why does International Women's Day Matter?
BECAUSE WE'RE BETTER THAN THIS.
Without realizing it, and at times trying to deny it, the issue of gender equality has slowly become a passion of mine. Since an early age, I have always been told "I could be whatever I wanted when I grew up"--which is something I believe most kids of the 90s heard.
I was sent to an all-girls high school, where the same ideals were reinforced. I went to a large, liberal public university and never thought the wiser. And then reality hit. At age 22, after being molded for nearly 2 decades in a world of "you can be whatever you want", I slowly learned that was true--but only to an extent (even in a field dominated by women). I slowly realized the glass ceiling still exists, the "boys club" still exists, and while women are represented on most executive counsels, they are few and far between.
This is where I paused and reacted in a way that still shocks me: I decided this was my cause.
In the nonprofit sector we constantly talk about impact...almost to the point where it's become a meaningless buzzword. But one of the few times it's still "impactful" if you will, is when a donor is asked "what type of impact will be most meaningful to you?". So after a number of personal life events, I realized it troubled me to think of raising a daughter in today's world of inequality; and I wanted..no I had to fix it.
I'm proud to say that the nonprofit sector has loudly stepped up to the plate; as it should. Since 1870 (yes that's how long this movement has been going on folks), private philanthropy has spearheaded the Women's Movement.
So. Why does International Women's Day matter? Just to name a few:
- Women bring something to the table. To the board room to be exact. Let's be real, the glass ceiling still exists; the pay gap still exists. Yet more women go to college now...more women receive a Master's Degree too. Oh...and Harvard just proved that women are more effective leaders. Just saying. And yet we continue to have to fight to not only get to the table, but stay at it.
- Role models. Women are natural networkers. I have been blessed with a network of strong women. But not every woman is this lucky. Michelle Obama recently shared with the Women's Fund of Central Indiana that women are more likely to participate in movements and giving when a role model encourages the behavior.
- Funding Feminism: the power of giving. Giving Day 2017 proved that Women give more of their money away compared to men. Not to mention their time. And it makes women live longer when they do.
- Trying until you succeed. If this movement doesn't teach resilience I'm not sure what will.
All thoughts and opinions are my own.