International Women’s Day is a global day celebrated annually on 8th of March. IWD is the most important day to celebrate women’s achievements and to venerate them. It is the day when women are recognized for their achievements and contributions. On this date, women from different cultures and backgrounds come together to raise a voice for equality, for providing basic rights to women across the world and to spread awareness in this regard.
According to a definition of WORLD BANK, “Women Empowerment is to empower Women in their own way and increasing their capacity to make choice and transform their choice into desirable actions and outcomes.”
Table of Contents
History and Significance of IWD
The seeds of IWD were planted in 1908 in New York, when 15,000 garment industry women came together on road to protest against the working conditions of the company. After this successful revolt, America was the first who declared the first Women’s Day in 1909.
Officially, the first women’s day was honored in Austria, Denmark, Germany, Switzerland on 19th march, 1911 where 1 million people took part in it, indicating that the event was a great success. Later on, the date shift to 8th march in 1913. Technically, this year, we celebrated our 101th International women’s Day.
Why do we need to have a special day in the calendar to celebrate women?
What is the significance and why is the need to celebrate this day?
According to a statement, “if you educate a man, then you educate only a man. If you educate a woman, then you educate an entire generation”.
In many countries, women are still discriminated on the basis of gender, impacting them in various fields of life.
Did you know that according to the World Bank, women account for 66% of the world’s working hours but only 10% of the world income?
To eliminate such biases and discriminations from root, women empowerment is a must. Women’s Day is a way to encourage women to feel strong by telling them that they can do everything that they want to do. It also spreads awareness to eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual exploitation.
IWD THEME 2021
‘Choose to challenge’ is the campaign theme for International Women’s Day 2021. It indicates that a challenged world is an alert world, and from challenge comes change. So let us all choose a challenge on this women’s day to call out all the gender biasness and inequality. Let’s raise our hands to challenge to change these discriminations and collectively help to make an inclusive world.
How can we be the agents of Change?
International Women’s Day does not specifically belong to any country or state. No government, groups, charity institutions or other network is solely responsible for IWD. It is associated with every person who wants to uplift and empower women. Empowerment isn’t something that can be done or transfer automatically. We must bring it. By training women in leadership and advocacy skills and by promoting them, we support them to bring and achieve critical changes in the community. Narrow mentality is like a worm which has entered into the mental setup of our society. Our society considers the male to be the decision maker and superior to woman. We need to eliminate this thinking. We can become an agent of change only by taking significant measures to end this mentality.
Indian Organizations that are making a huge difference
There are so many organizations that can help women’s to empower. Some of them are:
Shehalaya is the Non-government Organization that was founded in 1989 in the Indian city of Ahmednagar. Shehalaya works towards ensuring a life free from inequality, cruelty and discrimination for every women & child. Currently, the Organization reaches more than 19,000 beneficiaries a year by offering them services like rescuing children from sex trafficking industries. It offers 30 emergency safe houses for women and children experiencing domestic violence.
NORTH EAST NETWORK (NEN)
NEN is the Women’s rights organization that was established in 1995 as a part of the Beijing World Organization on women. NEN mainly operates in North East India. NEN has a registered office at present in Guwahati, Assam.
NEN organizes many training sessions and awareness programs with the goal of merging advocacy with activism. NEN protests against gender discrimination or inequality, biasness etc. They organize training session for women empowers.
Dera Sacha Sauda
Dera Sacha Sauda is the Non-government and religious organization that is located in Sirsa city in Haryana. This organization was founded on 29th April, 1948. It is doing excellent work in the field of Women empowerment. 134 welfare works are carried out by this organization. Among them, there are a lot’s of initiatives that are associated with women empowerment. Some of them are as below:
Crown OF the Lineage
In our Indian society, marriage of a girl means that she relocates to her In-laws, leaving her parent’s home. Giving a U-turn to this custom, DSS started a new initiative that proves to be a biggest revolution and a game changer for the idea of women empowerment that falls flat because of the customs and social stigmas. And that unique idea is ‘KUL KA CROWN’ – The Crown of the lineage. Under this initiative, the bride brings groom to her home after marriage. Unlike the existing patrilineal tradition, Saint Dr. Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh ji Insan opines that a daughter is as much her parent’s bloodline as a son.
A girl should not be reared as a weakling. They should be brought up to be strong. If a son can carry the lineage forward, why the daughter could not do the same.
SAINT DR. GURMEET RAM RAHIM SINGH JI INSAN
Wave of change for Women
Facing all difficulties and obstacles, females are slowly making their way to leave an indelible mark on the whole world. There are so many women who made India proud with their intelligence and bravery. They make world records in every field, be it sports or education, science or medical. There are so many organizations that encourage women’s to shine their brightest. The Dera Sach Sauda organization is one of them. The girls of Shah Satnam Ji School came out to be the winners in so many sports events held at national and inter-national level, and have been awarded with silver, gold and diamond medals by Saint Dr. Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh Ji Insan to encourage them.