Too often, we’re told an incomplete story of human accomplishment. This International Women’s Day, 8 March, we are acknowledging women’s leadership, achievements, and contributions to our world by telling the whole story. We’re celebrating the tremendous efforts by women and girls around the world who are working to save lives and defeat poverty.
We’re telling the whole story of these change-makers and fearless leaders, whose work is helping save lives and defeat poverty:
Fira – Indonesia
Fira lost her husband and her five-year-old son during the 2018 tsunami in Sulawesi that claimed 1,500 lives.
In the months that followed, Fira dedicated her time to help others recover. Because she knew women and girls were most vulnerable in the aftermath of the crisis, she volunteered at a women friendly space where women could find privacy, and report instances of abuse.
“I wanted to show that I can rise after the big fall. I want to help others. I want to help other women to be stronger.”
Sallyn – Papua New Guinea
Sallyn is a passionate supporter of gender equality, and has spearheaded a women’s group which grew from 46 female members to 1700 men and women.
In 2016, CARE helped fund improvements to the grounds where she now leads a coffee farming cooperative, and the training is being delivered by role model farmers to community members.
“I’ve been a community development person all my life. I’m an agent of change. Building bridges, making linkages, helping people succeed in life.”
Julia – Vanuatu
In April 2020, when Cyclone Harold tore across the Pacific, thousands of people were injured and made homeless.
Julia sprang into action and managed teams across multiple islands, coordinated distribution plans with team leaders, and provided logistical support to the response teams to ensure that relief supplies went to those who needed them most.
“I feel that it is really important to empower women affected by disasters and ensure that they are supported, heard and involved in the decision making.”
Marie – Vanuatu
After Cyclone Pam hit the Pacific island nation of Vanuatu in March 2015, Marie didn’t know if her family were dead or alive.
In the midst of uncertainty, Marie did what she does best – she packed a bag and went out to help people.
She hopped on the first charter flight to one of the worst hit islands, Erromango, where she distributed food and other lifesaving essentials.
Weeks later, Marie was finally able to make that phone call back home to find out if her family survived.
Not only was her family fine, but without even being there in person, Marie’s foresight had helped her family and neighbours survive. On Marie’s advice, her family had stockpiled food and firewood. It was lucky they did, because they soon had 30 mouths to feed.
This International Women’s Day, celebrate the accomplishments of women like Fira, Sally, Julia and Marie, and help us #ShareTheWholeStory today.