International Women’s Day

Each year around the world, International Women’s Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8. Hundreds of events occur not just on this day but throughout March to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women.

The history of this day goes back to  1910 when an International Conference of Working Women was held in Copenhagen. A woman named Clara Zetkin (Leader of the ‘Women’s Office’ for the Social Democratic Party in Germany) tabled the idea of an International Women’s Day. She proposed that every year in every country there should be a celebration on the same day – a Women’s Day – to press for their demands. The conference of over 100 women from 17 countries, representing unions, socialist parties, working women’s clubs, and including the first three women elected to the Finnish parliament, greeted Zetkin’s suggestion with unanimous approval and thus International Women’s Day was the result.

Success of the first International Women’s Day in 1911 exceeded all expectation. In 1913 International Women’s Day was transferred to 8 March and this day has remained the global date for International Women’s Day ever since.

On International Women’s Day, let us continue to advocate that women of all ages will know what they can and should expect in terms of cancer risk, diagnosis, treatment, recovery and support in order to improve early detection rates and survival rates.

To celebrate International Women’s Day, watch Kelly Corrigan’s video  Transcending: Words on Women and Strength (link above)