Women’s Day means different things to different people. To some it is a day to reflect on the struggles of the women who have helped bring us to where we find ourselves today, to others it is a day to celebrate the women in our own lives, their unique attributes and the sacrifices they have made for us; and for yet others it just means a day off.

Whatever the meaning, what cannot be denied or ignored is the fact that women’s struggle for equality has been a long and difficult fight, perhaps unimaginable for the current generation who only see the position women hold in society today. It is for this reason that we should celebrate the achievements in all the different arenas be it social, political, cultural or economic.

Yet with all that we have achieved, the fight goes on because we cannot be content with where we are as long as inequality between men and women still exist, whether it is in the workplace, our homes or in the country; and for as long as women have to live in fear of men, the fight goes on.

It helps that there are more women in critical decision making roles nowadays thus ensuring that the women’s perspective is taken into account because history has revealed that women can change the world and perhaps women empowering women will bring equality on all levels for women to fruition. This is the vision we have and strive for daily, where abuse by their male counterparts should not even be a thought let alone a reality in the lives of women.

If we look at women of today, we are able to take on and manage multiple duties and responsibilities on a daily basis as opposed to that of primarily being a housewife and mother. Women have evolved and continue to evolve and adapt successfully to the ever changing environment. Over time women have realised that they too matter -their dreams, their aspirations- and have started focusing on themselves also. Perhaps what makes women stand out and worth celebrating is that no matter where she goes and how much she achieves, she does this all whilst still holding on to her historical roles and duties of being a daughter, wife, mother, etc.

Being a woman of the 21st century allows women to be stronger, much more advanced and self-sufficient than ever before. Those who fought for women’s rights in the past would be proud to see the achievements of the women today through exercising those rights.
The strength of a woman enables her to manage all the roles she takes on in her life. With so many different roles to choose from, perhaps the most significant role a woman can take on is that of holding another woman up. Too often we find women viewing other women as their competition. It would be wise to remember that each of us is on our own journey with the same goal. If we can help each other overcome obstacles, we can achieve more because every step we take in the right direction towards the goal, will help future generations of women in their journey.

This Women’s Day let us honour, celebrate and salute all the women in our lives, especially those who quietly go about making a positive difference in the lives of those around them without any fanfare or seeking any recognition. On a personal note, I would like to acknowledge my mum and my sister as two of the strongest, most remarkable and inspirational women l have been blessed to share my life’s journey with.

Happy Women’s Day.

Article by Sherry Mahabeer
Midlands Hindu Society