Annually, since 1975, the United Nations has recognized March 8 as International Women’s Day. This day is an opportunity to stop and reflect on the progress (or lack of progress) made, and to celebrate the accomplishments of girls and women around the world. Each year, there is a different theme for International Women’s Day. This year, the theme is the “Time is Now: Rural and Urban Activists Transforming Women’s Lives”.

International Women’s Day is also a time to call for change and action on inequities and injustices. Given our focus on access to and success in education here at Minute School, we wish to raise awareness around the barriers girls and women face in their educational paths – both locally and around the world. To better understand what these barriers are, have a look at the UNESCO eAtlas of Gender Inequality in Education, which provides data country-by-country and an overview of the ongoing issues girls and women experience when trying to get an education. 

With the intent to fight social, environmental, and economic disparities, the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals offer direction and hope for ensuring better lives for girls and women around the world. Opportunities for equal access to education are highlighted through Sustainable Development Goal 4 – “ensuring inclusive and quality education for all and promoting lifelong learning”; and Sustainable Development Goal 5 – “achieving gender equality and empowering all women and girls”. Increasing equitable access to quality education, at all levels, has significant impacts on the lives of girls, women, as well as their families and communities. Nationally and globally, these impacts are felt too when more girls and women are contributing to the advancement of social and economic development.

Consider how you will contribute to the progress of girls and women – locally and globally; today on International Women’s Day and beyond. Share this blog post on your social media channels, using the hashtags #IWD2018 and #TimeisNow to raise awareness and to celebrate International Women’s Day.

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