Monday 9th March 2020 MTC Learning celebrated International Women’s Day.
Celebrated on March 8 every year, International Women’s Day is a day dedicated to honouring the achievements of women throughout history and all across the globe, and is a day for everyone from all different backgrounds and cultures to band together to fight for gender parity and women’s rights.
The day, collectively founded by women, also brings attention to gender parity and women’s rights.
History of Women’s Day
International Women’s Day has a rich history dating back 108 years — the first glimpse of it was in 1909 when the Socialist Party of America celebrated 15,000 women who protested long work hours, low pay, and the lack of voting rights in New York City.
Originally called National Woman’s Day, the monumental annual celebration spread across the world (officially celebrated in 1911), but it was Russia who unknowingly set the March 8 trend. Although International Women’s Day became an official holiday in Russia in 1913, women still experienced difficulties caused by WWI. While men were off at war, women dealt with food shortages and a government who wouldn’t listen to them.
On March 8, 1917 (February 23 in the former Russian calendar), tens of thousands of Russian women took to the streets demanding change. The unified cry for help paved the way for Russian women to be granted voting rights soon after.
In 1975, the United Nations officially recognised International Women’s Day, and, in 1996, began to adopt an annual theme for every year. The first theme was “Celebrating the past, Planning for the Future.”
MTC Learning’s workshop delivered this year’s theme #EachforEqual which is meant to be a shared goal throughout 2020.
MTC Learning addressed how we can actively choose to challenge stereotypes, fight bias, broaden perceptions, improve situations, and celebrate women’s achievements each one of us can help create a gender equal world. Let’s all be #EachforEqual.”
We drew on the notion of “collective individualism,” which refers to the idea that every individual is a part of a whole, and that an individual’s actions, behaviours, and mindsets can all have an impact on larger society.
The workshop examined the life of three women:
Abida Sartaj from a remote village Imit in Ishkomen, Gilgit Baltistan. Who leaves school because her father the only earner had due to an accident and lost his ability to work. In this critical situation daughter Abida aiming high when life gives you challenges you face them with grace. Abida supports her family and sends her siblings to the best schools. She also empowers many women in her village to be educated and learn new skills.
Amina Hersi Moghe born 1964 who started her business selling nails from her small hardware shop. She is a Kenyan entrepreneur who has launched several multimillion-dollar projects in Kampala, Uganda. Her investments include Oasis Shopping Mall in Kampala’s central business district and the Laburnam Courts Apartments, on Nakasero Hill adjacent to State House Kampala. She in the process of launching the first sugar factory in Northern Uganda. Atiak sugar factory will not only bring revenue and development for the region but is championed as the first large scale industrial project for Northern Uganda. She is also one of the city’s largest distributors of cement and other hardware materials. With successful business ventures throughout Uganda she has become a beacon of hope and a motivating role model for young African girls.
Marie Skłodowska Curie , born Maria Salomea Skłodowska in Poland on 7 November 1867 was a Polish and naturalised-French physicist and chemist who conducted pioneering research on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the first person and the only woman to win the Nobel Prize twice, and the only person to win the Nobel Prize in two different scientific fields. She was part of the Curie family legacy of five Nobel Prizes. She was also the first woman to become a professor at the University of Paris,  and in 1995 became the first woman to be entombed on her own merits in the Panthéon in Paris.
All three women were inspirational to the all those in attendance.
The group reflected upon how many of us don’t stop to think about how our own female ancestors who have driven progress and enriched our lives. These actions may not be documented in history books. Maybe they didn’t even make the local paper. But that doesn’t mean they took any less conviction.
Each person talked about the sacrifices and convictions of their wives, mothers, daughters, aunts, grandmothers all women who have touched and shaped their lives.