The World Economic Forum has reported a significant slowdown in achieving global gender parity. Their Global Gender Gap Report 2015 estimates it will take until 2133 to completely close the gender gap. No, that isn’t a typo, they are saying 117 years until men and women are completely equal! We just can’t wait that long and this is why International Women’s Day (IWD) 2016 is calling for a #PledgeForParity.
Through our artisan program, Anchal strives to take purposeful action everyday to empower our artisans with training, sustainable employment, education opportunities and health benefits. The goal is to elevate the status of these women within their families, as well as within their communities, so they can become agents of change.
This year, like every year, we plan to celebrate International Women’s Day. It is important for Anchal to recognize and celebrate dedication, courage and achievements of the artisans in our program. The day is not only meant to reflect upon the progress made, but to recognize there is still work to be done in order to achieve equal rights for women across the globe.
With the help of Jaimala Gupta, our partner at Vatsalya & Anoothi, Anchal artisans plan to celebrate this year’s International Women’s Day in Pushkar. This is very special for the women to be able to be taken somewhere special, away from their place of work. They will be joined by Anoothi women who are members of Self-Help-Groups by Vatsalya. Some of these women will be stepping outside of their village for the first time to make the trip from Jaipur!
We will share photos and stories from the celebration after March 8th, but here is a peek at the schedule for the day:
11am: Registration and distribution of special gifts to each of the artisans. Chai and samosas will be provided to the women upon their arrival and registration.
12pm: A presentation showcasing the achievements of all of the artisans over the last 5-6 years. New possibilities for the artisans will also be shared, encouraging them to continue their hard work and dedication. The Anchal team in Louisville has sent a special video message to all our artisans telling them how much they mean to us and how proud we are.
12:30pm: A total 15 orange belt level girls of Vatsalya will demonstrate karate to the group. After the demonstration, these girls will discuss how their participation in karate has changed their thinking and attitudes.
1pm: Anchal artisans will be allowed to stand up and bravely share their stories of struggle and success with the group.
1:30pm: We are so proud to announce that 2 Anchal artisans will be receiving a monetary award and recognition for their top performance in the program- Masquda for her excellent work, teamwork and dedication to the program and Laxmi for her hard work, confidence and understanding for quality and design of Anchal products.
2pm: The celebration will continue with singing and dancing by all the women!
3pm: Before ending for the day, the group will make a visit to to Dargah Sharif.
We invite you to take action now and on International Women's Day! Make your #PledgeForParity and find an IWD event to attend near you!