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International Women’s Day: History, Significance & Theme

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    International Women's Day

    Did you know that women make up over half of the world’s population? Yet, they continue to face various challenges in achieving equal opportunities and representation across numerous sectors. International Women’s Day serves as a crucial reminder to bridge these gaps and empower women for a more inclusive future. This day is celebrated globally through rallies, conferences and campaigns. People share International Women’s Day quotes on social media to spread awareness about the day. Events are organised that highlight women’s achievements and raise awareness about the challenges they face.

    In this article, we will get into International Women’s Day history, importance, and theme, tell you how to celebrate International Women’s Day and much more.

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    When is International Women’s Day celebrated? 

    International Women’s Day is observed on a grand scale on March 8th annually. This day serves as a global observance to honour the achievements of women in various spheres, including social, economic, cultural, and political domains. 

    Rooted in early 20th-century labour movements, has become a global phenomenon championing gender equality and women’s rights. It spreads awareness about the challenges women face and galvanises support for initiatives that strive to achieve parity between genders. It shines a light on the ongoing struggles for women’s equality, igniting action towards a world where genders stand side-by-side.

    International Women’s Day History

    International Women’s Day history is very old. It has roots in India that precede the early 20th century, gaining wider recognition during the period of active participation by Indian women in the struggle for independence from British rule. When was International Women’s Day celebrated for the first time? The 1st International Women’s Day was celebrated in 1911. It emerged as a pivotal moment during a period of intense advocacy for women’s suffrage, better working conditions, and gender equality. 

    Inspired by movements for women’s rights and labour activism, the 1st International Women’s Day was observed in Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland. The International Women’s Day celebration served as a platform for women to voice their demands for better treatment and representation in society. It symbolised unity and solidarity among women from diverse backgrounds, cultures, and socio-economic statuses. Since then, International Women’s Day has been commemorated annually on March 8th, following a decision made during the Socialist International meeting in Copenhagen in 1910.

    Celebrating International Women’s Day involves various activities ranging from marches and rallies to seminars and cultural performances. It serves as an occasion to honour the achievements of women throughout history and to highlight the ongoing struggle for gender equality. It’s also a time to address pressing issues such as gender-based violence, discrimination, and unequal access to opportunities.

    Over the years, International Women’s Day has evolved into a global movement, with millions of people participating in events and initiatives worldwide. It continues to inspire activism and advocacy for women’s rights, serving as a reminder of the progress made and the work still to be done toward achieving gender parity and empowerment for all.

    International Women’s Day History in India

    International Women’s Day history in India dates back to the early 20th century. The movement gained momentum as Indian women began actively participating in the struggle for independence from British rule. One of the earliest recorded celebrations of International Women’s Day in India dates back to 1917 when women in Bombay (now Mumbai) organised a protest demanding the right to vote.

    In India, International Women’s Day has become deeply woven into the social and political fabric. Each year, the day is marked by vibrant events and initiatives that all share a common goal: empowering women and achieving gender equality. During the pre-independence era, women leaders like Sarojini Naidu, Annie Besant, and Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay played pivotal roles in advocating for women’s rights and participation in the freedom struggle.

    After independence in 1947, the focus shifted towards addressing socio-economic disparities faced by women in India. The government introduced various policies and initiatives to promote gender equality, such as the establishment of women’s commissions, reservation of seats for women in local governance bodies (Panchayati Raj Institutions), and legislation to protect women’s rights.

    In recent decades, International Women’s Day celebrations in India have expanded to include a wide range of activities, including rallies, seminars, panel discussions, cultural events, and awareness campaigns. These events highlight issues such as gender-based violence, women’s health, education, employment, and political representation.

    Beyond national observances, India has seen a surge in local, women-driven efforts. These grassroots movements tackle the specific challenges faced by women, particularly in rural areas. Organisations like the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), founded by Ela Bhatt, have played a crucial role in empowering women through economic self-sufficiency and collective action.

    Furthermore, International Women’s Day serves as a platform for recognising the achievements of Indian women across various fields, including politics, science, arts, sports, and business. It celebrates their contributions to society and inspires future generations to break barriers and pursue their dreams.

    Despite progress, challenges remain, including gender-based discrimination, violence against women, unequal access to education and healthcare, and limited representation in leadership roles. Far from a symbolic gesture, International Women’s Day in India acts as a powerful driver for progress. It inspires individuals and organisations to join forces in building a society that values equity and inclusion for all genders.

    International Women’s Day Theme

    The International Women’s Day theme serves as a guiding principle for the annual celebration, providing a focal point for discussions, activities, and initiatives aimed at advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment worldwide. Each year, the theme reflects current issues and challenges faced by women globally while also highlighting achievements and progress made towards gender parity. The 

    International Women’s Day theme serves as a rallying cry for action, inspiring individuals and organisations to come together and advocate for positive change. It amplifies the voices of women, particularly those from marginalised communities, and calls attention to their unique struggles and experiences.

    The theme for International Women’s Day 2024, “Invest in women: Accelerate progress,” emphasises the crucial role of investment in advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment worldwide. This theme underscores the importance of allocating resources, implementing policies, and fostering environments that support women’s rights and opportunities.

    By investing in women, societies can accelerate progress towards achieving gender parity in various spheres, including education, employment, healthcare, and leadership. This extends beyond just financial resources. It encompasses investments in education, skill development, entrepreneurship, and ensuring equal access for both women and girls to resources and opportunities.

    Furthermore, the theme highlights the multiplier effect of investing in women, as empowered women contribute to the social, economic, and political development of their communities and nations. It calls for a holistic approach to investment that addresses systemic barriers and inequalities while promoting women’s agency, voice, and participation in decision-making processes.

    Ultimately, the theme “Invest in women: Accelerate progress” serves as a call to action for governments, businesses, civil society organisations, and individuals to prioritise gender-responsive investments and policies that unlock the full potential of women and girls, driving sustainable development and prosperity for all.

    International Women’s Day Events

    International Women’s Day is celebrated on a grand scale on March 8th. The day celebrates the remarkable accomplishments of women while urging progress towards a future where genders stand on equal footing. Across the world, a diverse array of events and activities take place to mark this important occasion, ranging from educational seminars to vibrant cultural celebrations.

    One of the most common International Women’s Day events is panel discussions and forums. These events bring together experts, activists, and community leaders to discuss pressing issues related to gender equality, such as women’s rights, economic empowerment, and political participation. Panelists often share their insights, experiences, and strategies for advancing gender equality, sparking meaningful dialogue and inspiring action.

    Other International Women’s Day events include Workshops and training sessions. These events aim to provide women with valuable skills, resources, and opportunities for personal and professional development. Topics may include leadership training, entrepreneurship, financial literacy, and self-care. These workshops empower women to overcome barriers and reach their full potential by equipping them with the tools they need to succeed.

    International Women’s Day is celebrated on a grand scale globally. International Women’s Day celebrations are further enriched by a number of cultural events. From art exhibitions to film screenings to music concerts, these events showcase the creativity and talent of women artists and performers. They also provide platforms for storytelling and expression, allowing women to share their unique perspectives and experiences with a broader audience.

    Community service projects and volunteer initiatives are another way that International Women’s Day is observed. These activities focus on giving back to the community and supporting women and girls in need. Examples include organising donation drives for women’s shelters, volunteering at women’s health clinics, and mentoring young girls.

    Finally, marches, rallies, and demonstrations are powerful expressions of solidarity and activism on International Women’s Day. These events become a powerful tool for unification. They bring people of all genders together to advocate for change and raise awareness about critical issues impacting women, including gender-based violence, reproductive rights, and LGBTQ+ rights. They serve as a reminder that the fight for gender equality is far from over and that collective action is essential to drive progress.

    International Women’s Day Celebration Ideas

    For International Women’s Day celebration ideas, consider organising events that promote empowerment and gender equality. Host panel discussions and workshops focusing on various aspects of International Women’s Day celebration ideas and issues, integrating the theme of the day into each activity. Additionally, you can plan community service projects to support women in need, such as volunteering at shelters or organising donation drives. 

    Encourage mentorship programs to facilitate the growth and development of aspiring women professionals, leveraging the significance of International Women’s Day to inspire and uplift participants. To spark important conversations and raise public awareness, consider actively participating on social media by sharing stories that celebrate the achievements and ongoing challenges faced by women globally. You can also attend local events, support women-owned businesses, or use relevant hashtags like #IWD2024 and #InspireInclusion to join the global movement for gender equality. 

    By embracing these International Women’s Day celebration ideas, you can contribute to a meaningful celebration that resonates with individuals and communities alike, fostering a culture of inclusivity and empowerment. 

    Celebrating International Women’s Day is not just about a single day but about recognising the ongoing efforts to achieve gender equality and empowering women in every aspect of life. Through these activities, we can honour past struggles and achievements while paving the way for a brighter, more equitable future for women worldwide.

    How to celebrate International Women’s Day?

    One of the central elements of the International Women’s Day celebration is the delivery of an inspirational c. A leader, activist, and advocate could take the stage to address the audience, emphasising the importance of gender equality and sharing strategies for driving change. The speech often incorporates powerful International Women’s Day quotes that resonate with listeners and inspire them to take action. From Happy International Women’s Day quotes by feminist icons to contemporary leaders, these words serve as rallying cries for the ongoing fight for women’s rights.

    Here are some Happy International Women’s Day quotes you could share on this special day:

    “Celebrating the brilliance, resilience, and boundless potential of women everywhere. Happy International Women’s Day!”

    “Today and every day, let’s honor the strength, grace, and wisdom of women who shape our world. Happy International Women’s Day!”

    “Here’s to the women who inspire us, challenge us, and lift us up. Happy International Women’s Day to all the phenomenal women out there!”

    In addition to someone holding authority giving an  International Women’s Day speech, a variety of International Women’s Day activities are organised to commemorate this day. 

    You can celebrate the extraordinary women in your life by sharing heartfelt International Women’s Day greetings with them. Whether it’s your mother, sister, friend, or colleague, you can take a moment to acknowledge their strength, resilience, and remarkable contributions. Your thoughtful words of appreciation through these International Women’s Day greetings will not only brighten their day but also serve as a powerful reminder of the impact they have on those around them.

    Here are three International Women’s Day greetings you can send:

    “Happy International Women’s Day to all the phenomenal women out there! Your strength, resilience, and determination inspire us every day.”

    “Wishing you a day filled with love, laughter, and empowerment. On this International Women’s Day, we celebrate the strength, resilience, and achievements of all women. May your voices continue to inspire change, and your actions pave the way for a more equitable future. Happy International Women’s Day!”

    “Cheers to the women who break barriers, defy expectations, and make the world a better place. Happy International Women’s Day!”

    You can also spread empowerment and solidarity by sharing meaningful International Women’s Day messages on this day! This is a time to honour the achievements and resilience of women past, present, and future. 

    Here are some International Women’s Day messages that you can share on this day:

    “On International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate the achievements of women past, present, and future. Let’s join hands and create a world where everyone thrives, regardless of gender.”

    “To the trailblazing women who break down barriers, defy expectations, and light the path for generations to come: your unwavering courage and resilience inspire us all. Happy International Women’s Day!”

    “Today and every day, let’s honour the contributions of women in our lives and communities. Happy International Women’s Day to the fierce, fearless, and fabulous women who make the world a better place!”

    Additionally, brands utilise the power of social media to celebrate International Women’s Day by engaging with their audience through various creative initiatives. One popular approach is conducting quizzes or polls that highlight women’s achievements, history, and empowerment. These quizzes not only educate and raise awareness but also encourage participation and interaction from followers. They may take to Instagram stories to ask their followers questions like “When is International Women’s Day celebrated?” or “What is the international women’s day date?” “When was International Women’s Day first celebrated?” and more.

    Additionally, brands often share inspiring posts featuring stories of influential women, motivational quotes, and messages of support for gender equality. These posts serve to amplify the voices of women and promote positive dialogue surrounding women’s rights and empowerment. By leveraging social media platforms, brands can spark meaningful conversations, foster connections, and contribute to the global celebration of International Women’s Day.

    International Women’s Day Activities

    International Women’s Day activities offer a diverse spectrum of events to celebrate and empower women. From thought-provoking panel discussions and workshops to inspiring art exhibitions and film screenings, these activities all share a common goal: raising awareness about gender inequality and advocating for women’s rights. Participants engage in discussions, share experiences, and learn from one another, fostering a sense of solidarity and empowerment. These International Women’s Day activities serve as sources of inspiration and encouragement.

    Sending International Women’s Day wishes, messages, and greetings is another common way to celebrate International Women’s Day. People use this opportunity to express their appreciation for the women in their lives and to acknowledge their contributions to society. 

    Happy International Women’s Day wishes and messages are shared on social media platforms, accompanied by International Women’s Day quotes that capture the spirit of the day. These messages serve as reminders of the importance of supporting and uplifting women in all aspects of life.

    Here are some Happy International Women’s Day wishes:

    “Wishing all the incredible women out there a day filled with love, laughter, and limitless possibilities. Happy International Women’s Day!”

    “May this International Women’s Day be a reminder of your worth, strength, and the profound impact you have on the world. Here’s to you, today and every day!”

    “On this International Women’s Day, may you be celebrated, empowered, and supported in all your endeavors. Here’s to smashing glass ceilings and paving the way for a brighter future!”

    Community service projects play a significant role in the International Women’s Day celebration as well. These projects focus on supporting and empowering women in need, such as organising donation drives for women’s shelters, volunteering at women’s health clinics, and mentoring young girls. Through these acts of kindness and solidarity, individuals and organisations demonstrate their commitment to advancing gender equality and supporting women’s rights.

    International Women’s Day serves not only as a celebration of achievements but also as a critical moment for introspection. It prompts us to reflect on the strides made towards gender equality while acknowledging the ongoing work necessary to create a truly equitable future. Many people use this day to update their International Women’s Day status on social media, sharing messages of solidarity and commitment to gender equality. International Women’s Day status updates often include International Women’s Day speech in English excerpts, highlighting key themes and calls to action.

    Activity Ideas for International Women’s Day

    Here are some activity ideas for International Women’s Day:

    1. Host a panel discussion on gender equality and women’s empowerment, inviting diverse speakers to share their insights and experiences. Encourage participants to explore ways to promote inclusivity and support women in various aspects of their lives. This interactive session can spark meaningful conversations and inspire action towards gender equality.

    1. Organise a mentorship program where experienced women leaders mentor aspiring individuals, providing guidance, support, and encouragement. This mentorship program fosters a supportive environment where aspiring individuals can learn from experienced women leaders, develop their skills and confidence, and receive valuable guidance as they navigate their chosen career paths. Through this collaborative journey, participants gain clarity and direction, unlocking their full potential while fostering a strong sense of community and shared purpose.

    1. Plan a community service project focused on supporting women in need, such as volunteering at a local women’s shelter, organising a fundraiser for women’s health initiatives, or hosting a workshop on financial literacy and entrepreneurship. By coming together to address pressing issues faced by women, communities can create positive change and demonstrate solidarity with those who need it most. This collective effort not only makes a tangible impact but also strengthens bonds and fosters empathy and understanding.

    By implementing these activity ideas for International Women’s Day, organisations and individuals can contribute to a meaningful celebration that honours the achievements of women and advocates for women’s rights. This collaborative approach empowers women and fosters a culture of inclusivity and empowerment in communities worldwide.

    FAQs about International Women’s Day

    • Q. When do we celebrate International Women’s Day?

    International Women’s Day is celebrated on a grand scale annually on March 8th.

    • Q. When was the first International Women’s Day celebrated?

    The first International Women’s Day was celebrated in 1911.

    • Q. What is International Women’s Day?

    It is a day that honours the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. It also serves as a call to action to accelerate gender equality and women’s empowerment worldwide.

    • Q. What are some International Women’s Day event ideas?

    Some International Women’s Day event ideas include panel discussions, workshops, community service projects, mentorship programs, film screenings, art exhibitions, and awareness campaigns.

    • Q. Why do we celebrate International Women’s Day?

    Recognising the achievements of women, raising awareness about gender inequality and discrimination, advocating for women’s rights, and promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment globally are some reasons why we celebrate International Women’s Day.

    • Q. What is the International Women’s Day colour?

    The colours associated with International Women’s Day, purple, white, and green, symbolise various aspects of women’s struggles. Purple signifies justice and dignity, white represents purity and hope for a peaceful future, while green symbolises hope and spring. These colours were adopted by the Women’s Social and Political Union in the United Kingdom and have since become emblematic of the global women’s rights movement.


    In conclusion, International Women’s Day stands as a testament to the resilience, achievements, and ongoing struggle for gender equality and women’s empowerment. From its origins in the early 20th-century labour movements to its global observance today, International Women’s Day stands as a potent symbol, both celebrating the advancements achieved towards gender equality and highlighting the ongoing journey towards a truly equitable future. Through rallies, conferences, campaigns, and social media engagement, people around the world come together on March 8th to honour women’s contributions, raise awareness about gender inequality, and advocate for positive change.

    As we reflect on International Women’s Day history, let us also recognise that the fight for gender equality is far from over. It requires sustained effort, collective action, and a commitment to addressing systemic barriers and injustices. By empowering women’s voices, championing their rights, and nurturing inclusive communities, we can build a world where all women and girls can thrive and reach their full potential.

    On this International Women’s Day and beyond, let us reaffirm our dedication to building a more equitable and just society for all genders. Together, we can accelerate progress towards a future where every individual, regardless of gender, enjoys equal rights, opportunities, and respect.

    To further contribute to the empowerment of women and girls worldwide, individuals can take action beyond International Women’s Day. One impactful way to support women’s empowerment causes is by contributing to initiatives on crowdfunding platforms like Ketto

    By supporting organisations that champion gender equality, advocate for access to education and healthcare for all, and fight against gender-based violence, we can positively impact the lives of countless women as well as girls around the world. Let this International Women’s Day serve as a springboard for continued action. Through sustained advocacy, unwavering support, and tangible efforts, we can build a world where inclusivity and equality are the cornerstones for everyone. Happy International Women’s Day!

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