The Power Of A Hashtag – #IWD16

The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is #PledgeForParity.

internationalwomensday-logo-62Q. But Ana, you’re interested in maternal health, what does gender parity have to do with it?

Answer:

The ‘female child’ for far too long has been seen as a ‘financial burden’.

Though the situation is improving, the scenario detailed below is sadly still a norm in too many countries.

Female child >> less encouraged to become educated

Female child reaches puberty >>

inadequate hygiene facilities [at school] during menstruation >>

Communal/open air toilets mean girls are more vulnerable to assault & humiliation >> less likely to complete high school education >>

earlier marriage >>

earlier pregnancy >>

heightened risk of maternal complication >>

obstetric problems & sometimes sadly resulting in maternal & fetal mortality.

This is just 1 scenario that could easily be altered if gender parity truly existed.

The aim of the #GlobalGoals includes tackling a fair few issues mentioned above:

No Poverty

Good Health & Wellbeing

Quality Education

Clean Water & Sanitation

—-

But so many are heavily tied in with

5. Gender Equality

Because how can poverty be overcome, when right now:

#povertyissexist?

—–

I’ve read numerous articles titled variations of this:

‘Millenials’ are poised to reshape the ecomony’ – Goldman Sachs

‘Generation Y : The Gamechangers, the changemakers’

‘The Rise of The Millenials – How they’re set to Change the world’

…& you know what?

Each time I do, these articles fill me with so much energy.

I’ve written about it before & I’ll say it again.

Generation Y, the ‘millenials’, whatever you want to call us:

We DO want to make a difference.

We DO realise it’s up to us & never have there been as many resources as today.

We’re not content with just the standard status quo.

The degree, the job, retire & then LIVE.

The more I chat to my peers, the more I feel proud & invigorated with our generation’s desire to do more than just exist.

We’re aware that our privileges come with responsibility & we’re willing to do good with what resources we have.

In a world that finds it sometimes easier to access the Internet than a hygienic toilet.

There is power in social media, bigger than we give credit for, like never before.

But what good does a hashtag do?

Think #nomakeupselfie >> & £8 million raised for Cancer Research.

A hashtag represents solidarity, support & strength.

As the saying goes, there’s strength in numbers; in knowing you’re not alone.

Because when we’re surrounded by like-minded individuals all investing energy into a shared cause, that’s when the magic happens.

What #PledgeForParity means to me:

  1. It means both men & women encouraging women [in all countries, not just the developing ones] to push more boundaries, to support them in all their endeavours.
  2. In challenging stereotypes in whatever environment you have influence over; be it work, home or with friends.

Like anything, change occurs first with ourselves.

-Think twice before we catch ourselves adding to harmful gender stereotypes : ‘man up’, ‘you can’t…..because, you’re a girl’.

When we challenge other people’s views and help lift up & encourage those men & women doing wonderful things for humanity.

So this Women’s Day, stand proud as a feminist & what that actually means : wanting equal rights for men & women & for wanting Gender Parity.

And on Tuesday, 8th March 2016, International Women’s Day 2016 [#IWD16] if you do happen to take a selfie…make it for a good cause & show your support using

#PledgeForParity

More?

Take the pledge.

or find a campaign that resonates with you :

I may not be the most vocal but I know I have a voice that matters & so does yours.

Until The Next Time,

Namaste | from Ananya xo

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I’m linking this post up with Lucy over at Lulastic and the Hippyshake for her International Women’s Day 2016 blog linkup. Hop over and have a read of the many varied and inspirational blog posts there.

  • Lulastic

    What a brilliant perspective – so great hearing your thoughts on what needs to change and the small things that can help!

    • Thank you so much for your lovely comment. I really do believe it starts with us, on a small level! x

  • Thank you. This was so perfectly written, Ana. Thank you for reminding everyone about the cycle that millions of girls in poverty-stricken countries still have to go through. Thank you for for outlining the name of those articles, that remind us what we want and frankly, what our duty is to our society. Thank you for linking that video that is so empowering (which reminds me, have you ever seen The Girl Effect videos? ) And thank you for stating such poignant sentiments about hashtags, I remember when pray for paris happened and Facebook profile pictures got a french flag filter I thought it was all well and good, I even wrote a post about it, but I definitely didn’t think of it from the perspective you just gave me. Thank you for this post, Ana.

    Raashi
    raashiagarwal.blogspot.com.au

    • Thanks so much Raashi. I have seen The Girl Effect videos & it’s wonderful there’s so so many more resources to help empower girls & women as well as encourage everyone to engage more in gender equality. So lovely to something in the post resonated with you! xxx