International Women’s Day was marked on Sunday March 8; with tributes aimed at empowering women, reflecting on how far the world has come in the quest for gender equality and how far it still has to go. In different parts of the world marches took place. For example, in New York City, where International Women’s Day began in 1909, about 1,000 people gathered at the United Nations plaza for a march to Times Square. The people gathered were marching in the footsteps of generations of feminists acknowledging that even though the march started more than a century ago, women still have a long way to go before attaining equality.
The sentiment of the marchers was echoed online, where thousands of women and men were urged to replace their social media avatars with a female silhouette and use the hashtag #NotThere; a symbolic act to show that while much progress has been made in the fight for women’s rights, “we’re NOT THERE” at least, not yet.
For example, the famous Clinton Foundation said ‘we’re not there yet on gender equality, the more we know, the faster we can get there. Join us: http://t.co/QhYgjtR4Mj #NoCeilings #NotThere.
The initiative, was championed by celebrities with big online followings; The number of countries with a woman leader has only risen by 6 in 20 yrs. We’re #NotThere yet. http://t.co/K8g9KoXyVx #NoCeilings @ClintonFdn — Karlie Kloss (@karliekloss) March 8, 2015.
Gender Equality: We’re simply #NotThere yet. http://t.co/gt1BsQppo4 pic.twitter.com/HGSIJ2UjAE— Vogue Magazine (@voguemagazine) March 8, 2015.
#NotThere was not the only digital tribute to women on Sunday. Google celebrated International Women’s Day with a doodle featuring women in various high-profile careers, including astronauts, engineers, scientists and judges. The search engine linked to another campaign; #DearMe — asking women to create a GIF that answered the question: “What advice would you give your younger self?”
Meanwhile, Beyoncé and Lady Gaga were among 36 prominent women who signed a petition calling on the G7 and the African Union to tackle female poverty. Meryl Streep, Charlize Theron and Rosamund Pike also signed the letter addressed to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and African Union Commission Chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who are each hosting a women’s summit later this year.
“If your summits reach the right agreements, great financing and momentum around girls’ and women’s empowerment can be placed at the heart of the new global goals,” the letter reads. “Poverty is sexist, and we won’t end it unless we face up to the fact that girls and women get a raw deal, and until leaders and citizens around the world work together for real change.
“If we get this right, we could help lift every girl and woman out of poverty by 2030 and by doing so we will lift everyone. Get this wrong and extreme poverty, inequality and instability might spread in the most vulnerable regions, impacting all our futures.”
The assertions made above, stem from the realization of the fact that women have not benefited as much as men from the progress made since 2000 in the fight against extreme poverty. Women still represent two thirds of the world’s illiterate population
So the day March 8, is gone by, but what are you doing to end feminization of poverty, gender based violence, inequality, lack of access to almost everything; education, health, power, business opportunities, harmful traditional practice such as; Female Genital Mutilation, Early and Forced Marriage, infanticide; when the fetus is a girl-child, suppression and oppression of all sorts powered by patriarchal dominance.
On our part, “In the City, Lagos”, is continuing with spreading messages on the hashtag #NotThere and #NoCeilings and #DearMe.
Look out for our daily tweets and retweet and send it forward, because together we can change these times and things.
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