Reflecting on International Women’s Day

Yesterday was International Women’s Day.  International Women’s Day is a global day celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future.  Suffragettes campaigned for women’s right to vote through the 1900’s and since 1911 International Women’s Day has honoured the work of the Suffragettes, celebrated women’s success, and reminded of inequities still to be redressed.

Yesterday I received several mentions in the social media for being an inspiration and a leader.  As much as I appreciate these accolades I can’t help but think about others that are more deserving.  I think of women who have suffered as a result of inequality and the fight that they have endured to regain what they lost.  Self esteem, confidence, health, a position in society and family. I’m thinking war, natural disasters and abuse.

I am abhorred by the abuse of power that (some) men inflict upon women.  I do understand that this is in the minority and that it goes both ways but I’m a women and I feel stronger advocating for my side.  I can’t help but think about the Delhi gang rape that so violently killed one of our very own colleagues, the school girls abducted in Nigeria, there are many examples. I feel utterly helpless.

On a lighter note, I think of women (and men) who are trying to become physiotherapists or physical therapists in countries where the profession isn’t yet well established.  Their fight for knowledge, an education and the independent ability to care for their patients. The more that we can help them the stronger our global profession will become, the larger the voice we will have and the more we will be able to contribute to global health.

I am a huge advocate for inspiring women who are disadvantaged in any way to be strong, independent and successful.  For several years I sponsored women who have been marginalised in countries affected by war and conflict through the charity Women for Women International.  Now my efforts go completely into Physiopedia.  If I can make a small contribution to the education and networking of people who are otherwise struggling to learn and to define themselves as physiotherapists and physical therapists then I will be happy.  I will have made a difference.

My advice to all women worldwide, be strong.