International Women’s Day 2020
Celebrate International Women’s Day by committing to work together with the International Women’s Convocation to provide women with a brighter future — a future where women have a voice, are equal participants in power structures and decision-making, and make a difference that benefits whole societies
Please consult and/or download the International Women’s Day 2020 Packet for Congregations (PDF, 19 pages)
March 8 has been designated International Women’s Day by the United Nations – and the day is recognized and celebrated in many countries around the world. The growing international women’s movement, which has been strengthened by four global United Nations women’s conferences, has helped make the commemoration a rallying point to build support for women’s rights and full participation in societies around the world.
The UN theme for International Women’s Day, March 8, 2020 is, I am Generation Equality: Realizing Women’s Rights. The theme is aligned with UN Women’s new multigenerational campaign, Generation Equality, which marks the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action. Adopted in 1995 at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, China, the Beijing Platform for Action is recognized as the most progressive roadmap for the empowerment of women and girls, everywhere.
2020 is a pivotal year for advancing gender equality worldwide, as the global community takes stock of progress made for women’s rights since the adoption of the Beijing Platform for Action. It will also mark several other galvanizing moments in the gender equality movement: the 5-year milestone towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals; the 20th anniversary of UN Security Council resolution 1325 on women, peace and security; and the 10th anniversary of UN Women. In the U.S., 2020 marks the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing and protecting women’s constitutional right to vote. This historic centennial offers an exciting opportunity to commemorate this milestone and to explore its relevance to the issues of equal rights today.
As the International Women’s Convocation received special consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council in July 2019, the organization is honored to be at the forefront of efforts to tackle the unfinished business of our time: empowering all women and girls and achieving gender equality.
We ask Unitarian Universalist congregations to consider dedicating a Sunday offering or collection to the important work of the International Women’s Convocation on March 8 or in May around Mother’s Day. This packet provides resources for Unitarian Universalist congregations to plan a worship service that honors International Women’s Day and support IWC in its mission to empower women and girls worldwide.
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Plate collections will benefit IWC’s Global Initiative for Women’s Leadership Fund
Honoring Barbara Kres Beach, the founding president of IWC, the Global Initiative for Women’s Leadership (GIWL) supports programs that provide culturally sensitive leadership training, networking opportunities and resources, as well as build capacity for sustainability and long-term success.
Culturally sensitive development happens when women team up and agree on their priorities. Training programs for the GIWL are built by women who are ready to make equality, empowerment, and community their priority, passion, and action.
Resources and support. The Global Initiative Leadership Team links in-country participants and facilitators with mentors, resource specialists, and funding match-makers. The Team—in and outside the country—plans together; identifies resources; activates the project; and finally, takes stock to ensure that goals have been reached.
GIWL focuses on program sustainability, requiring looking beyond short-term goals, toward a long-range vision: building capacities, strengthening women’s community, civil, business, and political participation, and advancing gender equity.
Projects IWC has helped design/direct, co-sponsor or raise funds for include:
- A micro-loan program in Mutundwe Village, Kampala, Uganda
- A six-module leadership school for Unitarian women and grants to local empowerment projects in Transylvania
- A six-module leadership development program in the Khasi and Jaintia Hills, India
- A violence awareness and prevention program in UU communities in the Philippines
- A violence awareness and prevention program in Unitarian communities in India
- A pilot leadership development program in Bolivia