This IWD, let us reflect on how we can support women and girls throughout the year
Every year, at the beginning of March we see brands, corporations, non-profits, universities host panels for women’s day. We see several op-eds on the lack of women in decision making and in leadership roles and how we need to empower them to achieve gender equality. This is an opportunity for us to reflect on the status of women and take stock of what we need to be doing for the rest of the year. Here are few things that we aim to do at Kuviraa, and hope more of you contribute in your own ways:
Highlight and amplify women (cis and trans) as role models: While growing up how many of us studied women freedom fighters or women who were critical in drafting our constitution? How many women scientists do we learn about ? We need to teach our children a bit more about the contribution women have made in the society we live in today. A great example of this is Rebel Girls, a digital media company that focuses on biographies of inspirational women from across the world. We need to have something more India focussed, highlighting all the amazing women that have got us here so far. This is key as we have seen through the “role model of effect”. The role model effect explains that the presence of women in important leadership roles itself helps girls and women challenge prevalent stereotypes and increase their aspirations, including educational aspirations.
Do you know women or girls that inspire you? Who are your hype women? Share their work, tell a friend! At Kuviraa, we aim to amplify women and non-binary political leaders through our work.
Build communities for young girls and women: Women need the support of other women, there is enough room for all of us . We need to create support systems where we have each other’s backs and can learn from each other. We see some great examples of clubs and networks in India such as the leap club, a network with a mission to have more women in leadership positions. We are hoping to build a community for young girls across India to connect with each other and build a safe space where they can talk about politics and their opinions without worrying about being trolled.
Design spaces for young girls and women: One of our favourite authors Caroline Criado Perez often talks about the “gender data gap” which states that
the data our society collects is often about cis men’s experiences and not other genders.
We think it is extremely important to collect perspectives from women and it to feed it into how we design and organise around. For example, how can we design political parties or rallies keeping women at the center of it? How can we design public spaces and transport for women? Let us demand that people in power are not gender blind while designing policies.
As we celebrate women today, our request today is to work on building aspirations of the next generation of women, so they have it much better than we have had.