2010 Women’s Month Programme Launches

PRETORIA – South African Minister of Women, Children and Persons with Disabilities, Noluthando Mayende-Sibiya will on Monday, 02 August 2010, launch the 2010 Women’s Month programme. Minister Mayende-Sibiya will also introduce the theme for the month and report on progress made since 1994 with regards to women empowerment.

This is a folloup to the International Women’s Day (IWD) which is marked every year on the 8th of March. IWD is a major day of global celebration of women. In different regions the focus of the celebrations ranges from general celebration of respect, appreciation and love towards women to a celebration for women’s economic, political and social achievements.

Started as a Socialist political event, the holiday blended in the culture of many countries, primarily Eastern Europe, Russia, and the former Soviet bloc. In many regions, the day lost its political flavour, and became simply an occasion for men to express their love for women in a way somewhat similar to a mixture of Mother’s Day and St Valentine’s Day. In other regions, however, the original political and human rights theme designated by the United Nations runs strong, and political and social awareness of the struggles of women worldwide

are brought out and examined in a hopeful manner.

Th first IWD was observed on 19 March 1911 in Germany following a declaration by the Socialist Party of America. The idea of having an international women’s day was first put forward at the turn of the 20th century amid rapid world industrialization and economic expansion that led to protests over working conditions[citation needed]