This is everything you need to know about International Women's Day

Wednesday, 4th March 2020, 12:47 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th March 2020, 12:49 pm

This weekend (Sun 8 Mar) marks International Women’s Day, an event during which countries across the globe highlight the social, economic, political and cultural achievements of women.

First celebrated over a century ago in 1911, International Women’s Day is an opportunity to challenge stereotypes and is a focal point in the movement for women's rights. Each year, organisers choose a different theme to draw people's awareness to and a variety of feminist events are hosted worldwide.

When is International Women’s Day?

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Every year, International Women’s Day is celebrated on 8 March. This year, the event will occur on Sunday.

What is the theme this year?

The 2020 campaign theme is #EachforEqual, which raises the issue of gender equality. The idea is drawn from the notion of “collective individualism” in which our individual actions, conversations, behaviours and mindsets can have an impact on our larger society.

The organisers say, “An equal world is an enabled world. Individually, we're all responsible for our own thoughts and actions - all day, every day.

“We can actively choose to challenge stereotypes, fight bias, broaden perceptions, improve situations and celebrate women's achievements. Collectively, each one of us can help create a gender equal world.”

The campaign also specifically looks at gender equality in the workplace.

It says, “The race is on for the gender equal boardroom, a gender equal government, gender equal media coverage, gender equal workplaces, gender equal sports coverage, more gender equality in health and wealth, so let's make it happen. Let's be #EachforEqual.”

How can I get involved?

The #Each for Equal campaign doesn’t end on International Women’s Day, it runs throughout the year as well.

You can get involved on social media. Post your #IWD2020 message on social media with your "hands out" equal pose for a strong call-to-action for others to support #EachforEqual also.

#IWD2020 International Women’s Day is this Sunday 8th March. This year’s theme: #EachForEqual pic.twitter.com/f38AUj8VBk

— hello leo (@byhelloleo) March 3, 2020

There are a number of other ways you can get involved, including attending events and activities.

Which events are running across the UK?

WOW – Women of the World Festival, London

Celebrating 10 years since its launch, the WOW – Women of the World Festival - returns this year to explore the state of gender equality and celebrate women and girls across the globe.

This three day event, which is set to coincide with International Women’s Day 2020, will see well-known guests like Naomi Wolf, Scarlett Curtis, Edward Enniful, Sandi Toksvig and Shazia Mirza, talking big ideas and analysis of gender equality today.

You can attend this event at the SouthBank Centre in London from 6 to 8 March.

WomenBeing Festival, Edinburgh

WomenBeing is a Scotland-based independent feminist magazine, and this March it is hosting the second-ever international interdisciplinary conference on gender studies and the status of women at Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh.

The programme promises to address the challenges facing women in today’s society, on the issues of gender equality and women’s rights around the world.

The event will feature talks, workshops, networking and more to “showcase diverse female role models to inspire women and girls to view entrepreneurship as a career option”.

This event will be held at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh from 8 to 11 March.

#SheStartedIt Live, London

The second year of #SheStartedIt live will see yet more amazing speakers, workshops and meditation classes, in celebration of female empowerment.

This year's guests include Pippa Murray, founder of Pip & Nut, Serena Guen, founder of SUITCASE magazine, Shola Kaye, a public speaking coach, and former Great British Bake Off star Kimberley Wilson (who is also a chartered psychologist).

The festival runs over two days and aims to give guests inspiration and advice on everything from your career, your goals, potential side-hustles, family plans, finances and self-love.

You can attend this event in Clerkenwell London from 13 to 14 March.

You can also search for other events on the International Women’s Day website