It’s today, International Women’s Day 2016. I am sure there will be lots of campaigning going on today. As there should be of course, possibly some of it being about gender equality. As is right. I guess. I don’t actually want to be equal to men if I am honest. I like that Mr B holds doors open for me, that he lets me get into a lift first but I love that women are passionately campaigning for equal rights and access to higher salaries etc.
What I like to do on International Women’s Day is celebrate women in general. Not doing things for the attention of the world, but just quietly going about their everyday lives, wherever they are or doing whatever it is they do. It is them that I want to celebrate and acknowledge today.
Those single mums who have been up all night with a poorly baby but have still got dressed and gone to work. Or done the school run and managed to remember lunch boxes and PE kit. They have even cleaned them. To the women doing life changing and stressful jobs that save lives, them. They are on my list today.
My daughters who are too gorgeous and amazing for me to even put into words (my son is too but he is, well, not a woman, clearly)
My two Team Honk founders Annie and Penny, and all the other women (and men, let’s not dismiss their support) who have supported and helped to raise so much with Team Honk in the past four years. Who have taken themselves out of their comfort zones in many cases, and pushed themselves to do something for others. Not because they were asked to do so. Or because it gave them something in return. But because they just wanted to help others less fortunate than them. Either by online social media support, or by fund raising. Today I will be saluting every one of you.
The women we have met along the way on trips abroad. Aintifar , Daed and Manar who told me what it was like living as a Syrian refugee in Jordan. Telling me how hard it really is to raise your children on such limited amounts of money, and with limited access to resources. How you can’t really call the house you are in home, but how your home doesn’t exist anymore. Women who all showed me such courage and determination and that whilst the media likes to just describe “migrants” or “refugees” these women are no different from me. You get a cup of tea when you arrive, and a hug when you leave.
In Kenya last year I met an extraordinary group of women living with HIV but determined to ensure their children didn’t develop the virus. Women who were educating the men in their families in how to stop the spread of HIV between their generation, and on to the younger members of their families. I had no idea until I met them that children of HIV positive mothers could be born without HIV. All supported by mothers2mothers:
mothers2mothers (m2m) is an African-based not-for-profit organisation leading global efforts to end paediatric AIDS and create healthy families and communities by training, employing, and empowering HIV-positive mothers as frontline healthcare workers. Since its founding in 2001, m2m has reached more than 1.3 million HIV-positive mothers in nine countries in sub-Saharan Africa with its scalable, high-impact peer approach
The most amazing group of women and it is them I will be remembering today. Those ladies just going about their way, doing what they do because they feel passionately about it.
Real wonder women. All of them. We all know a wonder woman, don’t we. She might be sitting next to you. She might be somebody you don’t get to see very often but speak to on the phone every now and then. It might be the fellow mum on the school run who you know has had a hard time recently and just by getting out of the house today makes her a wonder woman. If you fancy letting another woman know she is amongst an incredible group of Wonder Women, why not send her a wonder women card. The money from the sale of the card will help other wonder women do what they do best.