Women’s Stress Women’s History Month Week 2: How to Celebrate Women’s History Month
What once was a local small celebration of women, has grown and expanded to celebrating the entire month of March. As we give thanks and show gratitude for the amazing women who have made significant strides in our communities and the world, we can give back to our own community and inspire our daughters to do the same.
Here are some easy ways to honor Women’s History month and continue to inspire, encourage and empower our young women to live for their dreams and never look back.
1. Become familiar with current women’s issues. This doesn’t just mean nationally, but also within your community. Mary Tape was an activist in San Francisco who won a landmark case against the Board of Education to guarantee Chinese children the right to public school education. Who is in your neighborhood fighting for better healthcare, education or human rights? Research and find out and then see how you can support the cause too. Women still fight to gain equal pay. There are still stereotypes and profiling on Black and Latina women. Hate crimes against Black trans women is still very prevalent in all communities. There are still reproductive rights and workplace harassment issues that women face each and every day. Discrimination against women during a hiring process is still a big issue, especially within the STEM fields. We can help support these areas with our strengths, wisdom and support. Find one of these areas today that resonates with you and help them.
2. Explore and share your knowledge. If you have enjoyed a book, article, podcast or TEDTalk from an amazing woman, share it with your family and friends. Keep note of the accomplishments of women who share your passion for specific areas and pass along the information you find. Here are some books highly recommended for women:
a. No One Belongs Here More Than You by Miranda July
b. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
c. Bad Feminist by Roxane Gay
d. The Awakening by Kate Chopin, published in 1899 and ahead of her time.
e. A Woman Is No Man by Etaf Rum
f. The Moment of Lift: How Empowering Women Changes the World by Melinda Gates.
g. Hood Feminism by Mikki Kendall
h. The Marrow Thieves by Cherie Dimaline
3. Donate to charities revolving around women’s causes. Look for your local charities that will support those within your community. Find one that resonates with you and volunteer or donate to their cause. If you are not sure what is in your area try these:
a. Population Action International (PAI)-they expand global access to reproductive health care and family planning.
b. Incite!- focuses on ending state violence against women of color.
c. A New Way of Life- helps formally incarcerated women with housing, legal services and other support.
d. Women’s Earth & Climate Action Network, International-tackles the global climate crisis and socio-economic differences.
4. Find and attend virtual events for women. Throughout the month you can find local, national and international events happening virtually so you can join from anywhere and support so many different events.
a. The National Women’s History Museum will be putting together several different events https://www.womenshistory.org/womens-history/online-exhibits.
b. The UCLA Planetarium will honor women astronomers and their work within the space field. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yRGZby3uNvc
c. The National Museum of American History will offer an exhibit on the history of women’s right to vote. https://americanhistory.si.edu/creating-icons
5. Support women musicians. Seek out local artists in your area and find out when they perform, either in person or virtually and watch and listen. Buy their downloads, CD’s or Vinyls. Tip them when they are performing virtually and share their music with your friends and family.
6. Support women entrepreneurs in your community. Find the restaurants, boutiques, flower shops, coffee shops etc. who are woman owned and visit them often. Refer their services to your friends and family. Buy gift cards from them and give them to your friends.
7. Seek out movies, TV shows, theater shows directed and produced by women. More and more women are expanding from just acting to producing and directing. Find them and watch their productions. Find theaters owned by women and those who create, direct and produce theater shows. Look for dancers who specialize in specific dance. Google and watch these incredible African American ballerinas:
a. Precious Adams
b. Lauren Anderson
c. Aesha Ash
d. Debra Austin
e. Olivia Boisson
f. Karen Brown
g. Janet Collins
h. Misty Copeland
i. Michaela DePrince
j. Chyrstyn Fentroy
k. Virginia Johnson
l. Alicia Graf Mack
m. Anne Benna Sims
n. Llanchie Stevenson
o. Sydney Magruder Washington
p. Raven Wilkinson
8. Find and watch documentaries, TEDtalks, Podcasts that explore women’s issues. Google search different areas of women’s rights that you are interested in learning about and look for the documentaries. Here is a good list to start with:
a. She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry
b. The Death and Life of Marsha P. Johnson
c. Brené Brown Podcasts
d. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie https://www.ted.com/speakers/chimamanda_ngozi_adichie?referrer=playlist-10_talks_by_women_that_everyon
e. Melody Hobson
f. Meera Vijayann https://www.ted.com/speakers/meera_vijayann?referrer=playlist-10_talks_by_women_that_everyon
9. Choose to Challenge. What speaks to you? What resonates with you? Challenge it and champion the cause. Spread awareness about gender pay gaps. Dedicate an entire day purchasing from different women-owned businesses and restaurants. Be intentional about what changes you would like to see happen in your community and take part in supporting, walking and speaking up. Share your monetary donations too and inspire others to donate to causes they resonate with too. My new favorite non-profit helping women in my community is www.Periodkits.org. They provide a 90-day supply of tampons, pads and underwear to those living in poverty.
Don’t be shy with how you support women in your community! Post on social media using the hashtag #ChoosetoChallenge.