As a woman-owned company that takes pride in supporting various causes and organizations that support women, International Women’s Day is especially near and dear to our hearts. So what makes this day so important? Why should we all take a moment to reflect on the symbolism of this international holiday?

We still have a long way to go.

Since the first International Women’s Day rally in 1917, we have made lots of progress as a society, to be sure. In the United States and much of the world, women can vote, own property, and get an education. However, discrimination in the workplace, domestic violence, and gender bias are still common even in the most developed countries. In the United States, women still earn 20% less than their male counterparts throughout a lifetime, and are underrepresented in political spheres and leadership roles throughout our society.

It’s an effective way to get things done.

History shows us that large groups of determined women have been successful in forcing policy change. In 1917, women in Russia showed up in in such large numbers that the Czar was forced to abdicate his position and gave all women the right to vote. The suffragette movement in the United States in the early 1900s led to women obtaining their right to vote by 1920. The same idea persists today — viral movements like #metoo and #timesup give women a platform to share their experiences and let their voices be heard.

Your support matters.

This day isn’t simply about feminism. It’s about helping to make the world a better place for everyone. Raising awareness about important women’s issues means we can work together to empower women and young girls to gain access to things like education, and statistics show that education has the power to drastically reduce unwanted pregnancies and generational poverty —  not to mention increased work opportunities in a labor force that still favors men with opportunity and wages. Outside the workforce, educated mothers are better at providing proper nutrition to raise healthy kids, and education and well-being are linked as well.  

It’s an opportunity to celebrate the important women in your life.

No matter who you are, you have women to thank for your success and survival – mothers, sisters, colleagues, and everything in between. You are a product of their love, hard work, and affection. The best way to honor that fact is to use this day to acknowledge their sacrifices to make sure that the world is a better place for future generations.

It’s fun!

Who doesn’t love a good excuse to do some socializing and celebrating? Positivity is contagious and should be shared with friends, family, and total strangers at every opportunity. Rallies, charity events, fun runs, and community celebrations happen every March 8th across the globe. If you find yourself unable to attend events, using hashtags like #pressforprogress or #IWD2018 are easy ways to connect with others on social platforms and voice your support for the cause. Find out about the International Women’s Day events that may be happening near you.

International Women’s Day isn’t just about women — it’s about demanding basic human rights for all people. That’s what makes today so special — men and women can stand shoulder-to-shoulder to make a change in the world without using violence or focusing on negativity. And most importantly, it’s a day to reflect on how far we’ve come and how close we are to actually becoming the change we wish to see in the world.