By Resisterhood Medellin (Women´s March on Washington, Sister group). International Women’s Day (Wednesday, March 8th) celebrates the social, economic, cultural, and political achievement of women. This year, it has also become a symbol for the International Women’s Strike, drawing in allies from 30 countries, including the Women’s March on Washington, calling on a Day Without Women.
For women, and all people in the United States, this day takes on special meaning in light of the afront to advancing the rights of women that our country is currently facing, and the backlash against women’s rights that is being felt across the world as a result, from cuts to US funding for women’s health worldwide to the bolstering of right wing politicians in this current political climate. The outrageous statement in the European Parliament by a Polish MEP last week who said that women should earn less because “they are weaker, they are smaller, they are less intelligent” says a lot about where we are at in terms of women’s equality.
We at Resisterhood, a group of American women living in Medellin Colombia who came together as part of the Women’s March on Washington, Sister marches, have been reflecting on ways we can participate in the strike from Medellin. We created a list of things to try on Wednesday and to help our fellow resisters living outside the USA we wanted to share it with you. Some are local to Medellin, but many can be done from anywhere in the world.
We’ve included everything from movies to see, to businesses to support, to what color of clothing to wear. Happy resisting!
GO to Crepes and Waffles. This business hires only female heads of households. How to apply it outside Colombia? Find a restaurant in your city that has made public their policies around supporting women and eat there.
SEE the movie Hidden Figures (Talentos Ocultos) about the female, African American mathematicians behind NASA’s first successful launch.
Or watch Girl Rising, a documentary highlighting the global campaign for girls’ education. The film highlights the story of nine girls from Sierra Leone, Haiti, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Peru, Egypt, Nepal, India, and Cambodia.
JOIN women around the world in celebrating women’s contributions and importance locally and globally. Let’s #BeBoldForChange as part of International Women’s Day! Be sure to register your Bold for Change action here.
JOIN A Day Without a Woman on March 8th, in one or all of the following ways (Register here):
Women take the day off, from paid and unpaid labor
Avoid shopping for one day (with exceptions for small, women- and minority- owned businesses)
Wear RED in solidarity with A Day Without A Woman
READ the 10 Actions in 100 Days by the Women’s March on Washington
EAT lunch at El Vegano Andante, a mother-daughter run restaurant in Belen, Rosales. How to apply it outside Colombia? Find a restaurant in your city that is owned by a local woman or mother/daughter team and eat there.
CHANGE your profile picture on social media.
SUPPORT the women in your city. If you are in a position to give women a paid day off from their job or other responsibilities, please do so (housekeepers, nannies, employees at your company, etc.). Explain to them the significance of why you are doing so.
VOLUNTEER your time off. If you are a business owner, plan to give your employees the day off with pay (or a couple of hours if the whole day would cause an undue hardship) and encourage your team to volunteer this time to do something in support of the women in their families or communities. Things like grocery shop for an elderly woman, offer to babysit young children, etc.
RANDOM ACTS OF KINDNESS are a wonderful way to show your support to other women in Medellin – pay for the bus fare, a metro ticket, a coffee, etc. for a woman you encounter during your day.
ATTEND a local Women’s Day event in your city, run by a local women’s organization. No matter where you are in the world, it is likely that local NGOs recognize the day in some way through talks, marches or public events. Support their work! If you are in Medellin attend the talk, “Diversidad sexual y de género: Desafíos para el sector salud en Colombia” at Auditorio Parque de la Vida, Cra. 51d # 62-42 from 2:00-5:00pm.
GIVE to the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, Women on Waves, Days for Girls, Led By Her, ERA, Domestic Violence Hotline, Girl Got Grants, or 9to5. Donate to CARE International, dedicated to building women’s and girl’s’ future through development, education, equality and proper health. Or to UNICEF, which is dedicated to girls’ futures and is one of the largest organizations in the world that funds health care, education, and equal rights for girls and women. Or to Women for Women International, which has helped more than 447,000 marginalized women in countries affected by war and conflict.
ASK women in your local community about issues they find relevant. Aim to better understand their perspective.
READ Malala Yousafzai’s inspirational biography I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban.
Or Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead, Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books or A Thousand Splendid Suns.
Did you take action?
All ARO articles are written by Americans resisting overseas, for Americans resisting overseas. If you have action ideas you want to share, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.