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Women's History Month


Women are a force. Do you feel it? It is the existence, the embrace, and the energy of women – it surrounds us. Can you hear it? It is the voices of women who have historically and still continually advocate for self through demanding respect, equity, and the dismantling of a patriarchy that has for too long cast shadows – both intentionally and inadvertently – over the extraordinary and significant personhood and contributions of women – their voices empower us. Can you see it? It is the creativity in physicality, the beauty in being, the influence of lives touched by women or bearers of light – this uniqueness uplifts us.  Do you know and believe it? The Divine at work in women; especially women – this is a blessing to us. Women are a force.

Background – Women’s History Month

            In 1981 Congress passed Public Law 97-28 which granted permission for and requested Presidential approval to declare the week of March 7, 1982 as the first ever “Women’s History Week.” This was a momentous resolution, as it sought to officially and publically recognize through celebration the noteworthy and leading contributions of “American women of every race, class, and ethnic background” to the United States of America. Public Law 97-28 details the role played by women in the procurement of women’s suffrage, “…the abolitionist movement, the emancipation movement, the industrial labor union movement, and the modern civil rights movement” in addition to what was listed earlier on in the resolution. It goes on to state that in spite of the historic contributions of women, “…the role of American women in history has been consistently overlooked and undervalued in the body of American history.” This resolution was repeatedly passed by Congress for the next five years, until the National Women’s History Project implored Congress to do more. In 1987, Congress then passed Public Law 100-9, which moved the country away from Women’s History Week and into what was pronounced then and continues to this day as “Women’s History Month.”

Women’s History Month Theme – 2024

            Each year, Women’s History Month has a named theme that honors women who have been instrumental in that particular area. This year, the theme is Women Who Advocate for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. This subject commends women who are using their voices and experiences in order to level the playing field and are lobbying for inclusion and allyship in their various career fields and areas of interest. Some of this work deals with: gender equality in the workplace, disability culture, and support of caregivers. According to the National Women’s History Alliance, this also includes exploration of “harmful social policies and behaviors” and the establishment and expansion of strategic programming across every sector – educational institutions, the military, business organizations, and federal organizations.

International Women’s Day

Within Women’s History Month for the United States, but celebrated on a global scale, is International Women’s Day. Celebrated annually on March 8th, International Women’s Day honors women’s rights, inclusive of the continued fight for: reproductive rights, gender equality, domestic violence and all violence against women. It has been said that International Women’s Day is what gave birth to Women’s History Month.  In New York on March 8, 1857, textile workers gathered in order to protest inequitable working conditions for women. On March 8th of 1908, there was another protest in which women organized and marched through the Lower East Side. Beginning in 1910, March 8th became annually known as International Women’s Day.

Similar to the theme for Women’s History Month within the United States of America, the theme for International Women’s Day is #InspireInclusion. The International Women’s Day website provides a list of ways that groups and organizations can support, include and value women:

  • forging women's economic empowerment
  • recruiting, retaining, and developing female talent
  • supporting women and girls into leadership, decision-making, business, and STEM
  • designing and building infrastructure meeting the needs of women and girls
  • helping women and girls make informed decisions about their health
  • involving women and girls in sustainable agriculture and food security
  • providing women and girls with access to quality education and training
  • elevating women and girl's participation and achievement in sport
  • promoting creative and artistic talent of women and girls, and
  • addressing further areas supporting the advancement of women and girls.

Moving Forward

As we celebrate and uplift women during Women’s History Month 2024 and International Women’s Day, may we continue the fight toward equity. May we explore the spaces that continue to fall short of respecting and honoring women in order to tear down structures that no longer work and implement safe spaces. May we be brave enough to practice inclusion and confident enough to raise our voices against mistreatment and degradation. May we all be aware that women are worthy simply because. May women continue to pave the way and walk boldly in authority while accepting rest that does not have to be earned nor asked for. Happy Women’s History Month!

Women's History Month, International Women’s Day, Moving Forward


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