First celebrated in 1911, International Women’s Day is now acknowledged world-wide. March 8th stands as a symbol of the many struggles women have undergone to gain equal rights and serves as a reminder of how far there is still left to go. Thousands of events occur to celebrate women’s social and political achievements and rallies and protests take place to raise awareness towards the gender inequality women in all parts of the world continue to face. We may not all be able to take part in protests but we can all do something whether it is appreciating and supporting the women in our lives, or educating ourselves of the issues that women face, or even raising awareness about women’s issues or key women figures in history, through social media.
Another way that all of us can celebrate International Women’s Day and make a difference in the lives of women is by donating to a charity or organization aimed at aiding women. The following is a list of a five charities or organizations that help make lives better for girls and women globally.
1. Breast Cancer Research Foundation
Breast cancer is the most common type of cancer in women worldwide and the second leading cause of cancer death in women. Founded in 1993, the Breast Cancer Foundation works to prevent and find a cure for breast cancer through funding cancer research world-wide.This non-profit organization has raised over half a billion dollars to help find new preventative methods and treatment. 88% of all proceeds goes to research and 3% to goes to raising awareness, which makes this an excellent charity to donate to. To learn more, click here.
V-Day works to end violence including rape, incest, female genital mutation, sex slavery, and battery against girls and women from all parts of the world. This organization raises awareness and money for anti-violence groups through creative campaigns. The V-Day movement has raised over $100 million dollars, since it started 17 years ago. 93% of all funding goes towards programs. To learn more, click here.
3. Plan International
Plan International was founded over 75 years ago and currently works in 50 developing countries over the world. Plan’s “Because I am a Girl” campaign aims to help millions of girls get access to education and works to tackle issues such as child marriage and gender-based violence which prevent girls from going to school. To learn more, click here.
4. Women for Women International
Founded in 1993, this organization helps women from war-torn countries and those that have survived war by offering the necessary support and skills needed to get out of poverty and improve health. Women for Women International currently operates in eight countries: Afghanistan, Bosnia, the Republic of the Congo, Iraq, Kosovo, Nigeria, Rwanda, and South Sudan. In the past, Women for Women International has also operated in Croatia, Bangladesh, and Pakistan. To learn more, click here.
5. Acid Survivors Trust International
The victims of acid violence (use of acid to attack another person) are primarily women and children. Acid attacks leave victims disfigured and blind and in need of medical treatment and support that is not easily or readily available. Acid Survivors Trust International strives to eliminate acid violence and help victims of acid violence receive the care they need to lead independent and fulfilling lives. Based in England, this organization has partners in Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Uganda. To learn more, click here.
Please consider making a donation to one of the above women’s charities or one of your choosing. If you are unable to donate or prefer to help locally, try donating food, clothes, or your time to a local women’s shelter. When you invest in girls and women, you are investing in a better and brighter future for everyone.
Happy International Women’s Day to all of you strong, beautiful, and resilient women!