International Women’s Day (IWD) is Monday, March 8 and will be celebrated under the theme ‘Choose to Challenge’. While the hugely popular Flair event, The Distinguished, will not be held this year, a special Women of Distinction publication will hit newsstands this Monday.
Locally, celebrations of IWD will be quite different this year, owning to the coronavirus pandemic and gathering restrictions. Still, quite a few virtual events are happening, before and after the day as we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month. This year, IWD is all about spurring change, choosing to challenge ideas, beliefs, norms and structures, to create a more gender-equal world. It is an opportunity to celebrate women’s achievements, raise awareness against bias and take action for equality.
Women’s Leadership Initiative ‘Choose to Challenge’ Forum
The Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI) will mark IWD with a ‘Choose to Challenge’ forum. Speakers for the virtual event include Susan Taylor, celebrated editor-in-chief emeritus of Essence Magazine who is transforming young lives in the United States with her National CARES mentoring programme; Justice Carol Sharpe, the Jamaica-born, newly elected justice of the Supreme Court of New York and Eva Lewis, the first female bead of Citibank Jamaica.
There is also a panel discussion with six female business owners who are blazing a trail of entrepreneurship in their chosen fields. They are Brittany Singh Williams, founder, Spark Education Limited; Nadine Spence, managing director, SIXT Rent A Car; Dr Dahlia McDaniel Dickson, CEO, Charlie’s Pharmacy Limited, Medicine Chest Limited and Medicine Chest Health Centre Limited; Ozette Wright, owner, Brayhorn Company Limited; Kimala Bennett, managing director, The LAB and Melanie Levy, CEO, Candy Craze Candy Bar and Creamery. The interactive virtual forum, powered by Jamaica News Network, will allow participants to interact with presenters to ask questions and make comments.
- When: Sunday, March 7 at 4 p.m.
- Where: Online, via Zoom, click here to register
WAND, Pink Parliament Cross Country Dialogue
The University of the West Indies Open Campus Women and Development Unit (WAND) and Pink Parliament will host their second cross country dialogue with youth on Tuesday, March 9. The discussion, dubbed ‘A Cross Country Dialogue with Youth on Challenges for Women in Political Leadership and Development in the Caribbean’ will focus on the challenges women in political leadership face. Lisa Hanna, member of parliament for St Ann South Eastern, is the guest speaker for the event.
- When: Tuesday, March 9 at 6:30 (5:30 p.m. in Belize and 7:30 p.m. in the Eastern Caribbean)
- Where: Online, via Zoom
- How: Register here
EU, UN Women in Leadership Virtual Panel Discussion
‘The Women in Leadership: Achieving an Equal Future in a COVID-19 World’ virtual panel discussion will get an early 8 a.m. start on Monday. Organised by the European Union and the United Nations, the event will be moderated by Kemesha Swaby. Panellists include Juliet Cuthbert-Flynn, state minister in the Ministry of Health and Wellness; Senator Donna Scott-Mottley, deputy leader of opposition business and spokesperson for justice and gender; and Professor Opal Palmer Adisa, university director, Institute for Gender and Development Studies, UWI.
- When: Monday, March 8, 8 a.m.
- Where: Online, via the social media pages of the Jamaica Information Service, United Nations Jamaica and the European Union in Jamaica
Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries Agriculture, RADA In Bloom Series
The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries and Rural Agricultural Development Authority will observe IWD with a series of technical workshops. The Agriculture in Bloom series will look at emerging opportunities in agriculture in three areas: mushroom, turmeric and castor oil production; tower farming, aquaponics and micro-green production and livestock, plant doctor clinic, social services and home economics.
- When: Monday, March 8 – Wednesday, March 10, 10 a.m.
- Where: Online, via Zoom, click here for codes
Jamaica Stock Exchange Ring the Bell for Gender Equality
The Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) is hosting a hybrid event for IWD. Ring the Bell for Gender Equality will occur on Monday, from 8:45 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. at the JSE’s Multi-Purpose Centre. The event will be moderated by Dr Terr-Karelle Reid and will feature Marlene Street Forrest, managing director, JSE; Tonni Ann Brodber, United Nations Women representative; Olivia Grange, minister of culture, gender, entertainment and sport; Marisela Alvarenga, head of the Financial Intermediaries Division at IDB Invest; and Phadra Saunders, director, People Business Partner, FLOW Jamaica.
- When: Monday, March 8, 8:45 a.m.
- Where: Register here for this hybrid event
Jamaica AIDS Support for Life Virtual Symposium
The Jamaica AIDS Support for Life, with the support of the EU, will host a virtual HIV, law and human rights symposium under the theme ‘Unmasking Violence Against Women with the context of HIV and AIDS’. The event, which Emily Shields will moderate, takes place Monday at 10 a.m. Ambassador Marianne Van Steen, head of delegation, European Union to Jamaica, is a special guest.
- When: Monday, March 8, 10 a.m.
- Where: Online, via Zoom, click here to register
International Women’s Day Morning Brew and Conversation
In celebration of IWD, Fujitsu Caribbean will host a special virtual panel discussion on March 8 with female leaders defying stereotypes and achieving excellence. IWD Morning Brew and Conversation will be hosted by Sandra Jones, Fujitsu Caribbean’s vice president of marketing and communications. Panellists include Danielle Jones-Hunte, global head of employee advocacy and engagement, BP Global; Arlene Amitirigala, author and global communications leader and Sheree Martin, general manager, customer experience and organisational health, National Commercial Bank.
- When: Monday, March 8, 10:30 a.m.
- Where: Online, click here to register
Planning or attending an IWD event? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.