United Nations celebrates Women’s History Month

Alyssa Lobue , Reporter

March 1 marked the beginning of Women’s History Month. It was made to highlight the contributions of women from history to present day. Although the acknowledgement of Women’s History used to be a week, it now ends Tuesday, March 31. The world also has an official International Women’s Day, listed as March 8. Although the first International Women’s Day was in 1911, it became recognized as a United States holiday around 1987.

The theme for the 2015 Women’s History Month has been named Weaving The Stories Of Women’s Lives. According to NWHP.com, this theme presents the opportunity to weave women’s stories- individually and collectively- into the essential fabric of our nation’s history.

“The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights,” Gloria Steinem, American feminist, writer and social as well as political activist said.

International Women’s Day also has an official 2015 theme titled, Make It Happen. This theme encourages action for advancing and recognizing women.

“When I started working on women’s history around 30 years ago, the field did not exist. People did not think women had a history worth knowing,” Gerda Lerner, author of Women and History said.

The first women’s rights convention was held July 19,1848 in Seneca Falls, New York and was led by Elizabeth Cady Stanton as well as Lucretia Mott. In 1908 Great Britain chose purple, white and green as the official Women’s History Month colors. These colors chosen represent dignity, fair-mindedness and plight of the Suffragettes.

Seneca Falls has also been named home of The National Women’s Hall Of Fame, which was founded in 1969. The Women’s National Historic Park also resides in Seneca Falls.

“I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples,” Mother Teresa said.

On International Women’s Day, March 8, the United Nations released a statement acknowledging the strides made by women for education, politics, and employment. It also called for an end of violence against women and recognized the amount of progress still needed to advance worldwide women’s rights.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon admitted that the world had seen necessary advancements for gender equality over the past twenty years due to women’s political participation has raised, maternal mortality has lowered, and the gender gap for basic education has been permanently closed.      

“To be fully transformative, the post 2015 development agenda must prioritize gender equality and women’s empowerment. The world will never realize one-hundred percent of the goals because of fifty percent of the people cannot realize their full potential,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon said.

Another movement made by The United Nations for International Women’s Day was a live video segment broadcasted on multiple social media platforms by UN Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson. This is the first campaign of its kind at the UN: we want to try and galvanize as many men and boys as possible to be advocates for gender equality. We don’t just want to talk about it, but make sure it is tangible. I was appointed six months ago and the more I have spoken about feminism the more I have realized that fighting for women’s rights has too often become synonymous with man-hating. If there is one thing I know for certain, it is that this has to stop. For the record, feminism by definition is the belief that men and women should have equal rights and opportunities. It is the theory of the political, economic and social equality of the sexes,” Watson said.