“When women come together, collaborate and unite is when we create change.”
With the rise of the #Metoo movement and domestic violence at a high during sporting events like the AFL Grand Final in which prevalence rises by 40.7%, three mothers are tired of seeing people left behind and are taking a stand. They are launching Australian Women’s Day on Saturday the 22nd of September, the first of its kind in Australian history.
At the heart of Australian Women’s Day is a day of conversation, connection and cultural celebration of the women and girls of Australia. The core values of Australian Women’s Day are inclusivity, diversity, community, and collaboration. It’s an opportunity to celebrate Australian Women and their contributions, share stories and give voice to the diversity of women across the country. The day is about bringing Australian women together to support and celebrate each other and come back into community with one another whilst igniting a conversation around our cultural identity and acknowledging the wisdom that’s here on our shores, amongst the women of Australia, and providing a framework for collectively envisaging the future, both for ourselves and for our children. These three mothers are campaigning for Australian Women’s Day to become part of the national calendar and will produce an annual report on the state of Australian women.
Mother of two and CEO of Australian Women’s Day, Samantha Nolan-Smith spoke to Ananke about the day. Samantha sees Australian Women’s Day as “a chance for the nation to let our women and girls know how valuable they are. Despite there being equivalent females and males in Australia, women’s representation in public life isn’t equal. Women are significantly under-represented in Parliament, in ASX 200 companies, in speaking roles in movies, in sports coverage on television, in history books, in literary awards, in the music industry, and in by-lines of major newspapers. Australian Women’s Day is an important step in redressing that and Ms Nolan-Smith hopes it will become a catalyst for further collaboration.
Australian women’s day has set out a philanthropic goal and for 2018 the event aspires to raise a $15,000 Australian Sistership Grant which will be used to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and girls. Australian Women’s Day is made possible by Sistership Pty Ltd, a social enterprise focused on bringing women home to themselves and to each other. Sistership’s aim is to raise all women to the fullness of their potential and worth. Sistership believes to do that we need to create a village around her. A support network of people who can help her through the tough times and cheer her on when she’s striving for more. That’s what Sistership has been established to provide. Sistership Pty Ltd manages AWD in association with The Australian Women’s Day Trust (the AWD Trust). The AWD Trust decides the annual theme of the day, ensures cultural diversity in the management and operation of the day, and oversees the distribution of 100% of the monies collected on the day.
Women can get involved in any of the featured events around the country. In total we have 11 events happening in places like Melbourne, Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane, Adelaide, Byron Bay, Bellingen, and the Sunshine Coast. Or they might choose to celebrate with family and friends. We’ve included lots of suggestions for what you could do on the website.
To find out more about Australian Women’s Day and how you can get involved, please visit: http://australianwomensday.com and to find out more about the events around the country, please visit – http://australianwomensday.com/events/