08 Mar Why Do We Need International Women’s Day?
By: Kate Appleton | March 8, 2022
Women across Asia weigh in on International Women’s Day and why it matters
Our calendars are increasingly full of commemorative days and months, but International Women’s Day (IWD) is one of the originals, rooted in early women’s rights and socialist workers’ movements in the US and Europe. You might be surprised that the first official IWD dates back way before the social media activism era to 1911, with rallies drawing more than a million.
Worldwide celebrations on March 8th now run the gamut from marches and panels taking on the patriarchy to dining specials, shopping promotions of female-led brands, and movies to stream with your friend squad.
So how far have we come in more than a century? We put the question of “why do we need International Women’s Day” to our community across Asia—including women in tech, the arts, and philanthropy—to gauge what IWD means to them.
The perspectives shared below make a powerful case for why IWD is still relevant, from raising awareness about the gender gap to building global solidarity to celebrating progress made and inspiring female figures. They also underscore that tokenism won’t cut it. I’m impatient for a future when honouring women and breaking down biases become so engrained that International Women’s Day is just another day.
Mica F. Tan, co-founder and CEO of MFT Group of Companies
“History is full of female leaders who played a crucial role in developing their communities and promoting creativity. International Women’s Day is an empowering way to reach social justice in modern communities. The standards of a better future call for comparing competency, qualification, experience, capabilities and openness to development; not social status, colour or gender. International Women’s Day cultivates braver, more daring leaders—this strengthens the value of courage across the globe.”