Happy Women’s Day Donegal

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In this Women’s Live’s, Women’s Voice’ feature a Donegal woman shares her thoughts on why we should celebrate International Women’s Day, highlighting the importance of reflecting on achieves made in advancing women’s equality but also recognising the work that still has to be done and remembering those women whose voices go unheard and are excluded from realising their full potential.

 


 

Sunday 8th March is International Women Day, a day to mark the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women worldwide. The overall purpose of this day is to draw global attention to gender inequality and violence against vulnerable women. International Women’s Day is an opportunity to reflect on progress, change and to celebrate those acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities.

 

Imagine a world where everyone has equal rights and opportunities, where gender equality is the norm. Men and women sharing the care work at home and getting paid equally for work of equal value.  Picture equality on factory floors, corporate boardrooms and in political leadership. Women would have an equal say in decisions that affect their lives, their bodies, their policies, and their environment.


 

It’s easy to dismiss International Women’s Day as a day just for women and why it’s needed. If we look at the typical life of a woman in a country like Ireland, you might be slightly cynical as to why it would be necessary. After all, women can do what they want here – they have the vote, can work where they want, receive the same education, everything on the surface seems straightforward.

 

But it’s important to remember that International Women’s Day is over 100 years old. And here in Ireland no less than 50 years ago, women had to leave their job in the civil service if they got married. Women were not permitted to own property outright and were also prevented from collecting child benefits – it had to be paid out to the father.  And while there has been much improvement within the last 50 years or so, regarding Irish women’s position in society, this is not the same in every country.


 

We must look back as well as forward, and remember the struggle that women faced throughout the centuries in gaining fundamental rights.  The rights that are often taken for granted in western countries, and are urgently required in many developing ones, for instance, the right to vote, own property, and to have an education.  Those rights were required in a hard fought battled against those who sought to deny them.

 

International Women’s Day is a further opportunity to honour the incredible achievements that women have made throughout the world. All too often women have been erased from the history books, and this particular occasion is a great opportunity to experience the wonderful literature, music and scientific discoveries as well as all the contributions for which women have never been accredited.


 

Women like Nurse Elizabeth O’Farrell (1883-1957) who was a member of Cumann na mBan, and a dispatcher during the Easter Rising for the rebels. She was a midwife and a fierce Republican who stayed in the GPO throughout the rising caring for the wounded.  However, Nurse O’Farrell was ‘airbrushed’ out of history when her shoes were all that remained in a photograph of the 1916 surrender, in which she appeared alongside Padraig Pearse.

Elizabeth O farrell 1916


Also women like, Jenni Wyse Power (1858-1941) who is one of the better-known female figures in the Rising and politics of the 20th century. She was an activist, feminist, politician and businesswoman, a founder-member of Sinn Féin. She was appointed to the first Seanad, and used her position to campaign for women rights. Stories such as these are commonplace, and therefore it is important that women are remembered for their contributions to society.

 

Ireland is imperfect to the law of equality, for example, the wage gap disputes and also the vast inequality in politics. However, we need to recognise that events like this are an essential step of active solidarity for many women around the world. We, therefore, must reflect on the work that still has to be done and remember those women whose voices go unheard and who continue to be excluded from realising their full potential.

This is why International Women’s Day is essential – it provides otherwise silenced women with a voice, which is a vital step in the right direction.

 

 We are #GenerationEquality

 

 


NCCWN Donegal are always looking for women to share their stories and looking for women to write features on topics of their choice which we will profile as part of our Women’s Lives, Women’s Voices’ series.

 

Mighty Women

Mighty Women

 

“The more you know of your history, the more liberated you are” Maya Angelou

 

On 1st February NCCWN Donegal Women’s Network held the county’s  first Herstory event in support of a  national women’s storytelling movement to tell the stories of women past and present. The event  brought women together to share stories through a creative process and created a space to reflect on the importance of ensuring women’s everyday lives, contributions and stories are both told and included in our history.

 

As part of this day Julie Griffiths an Artist and facilitator from Donegal Changemakers a development education project lead a unique workshop entitled ‘Mighty Women’ commemorative plates a creative way of talking about and celebrating the women who have influenced and enrich our everyday lives.

 

We are delighted the Commemorative Plates created by the woman on the day will now been on display in Donegal Town, giving others the opportunity to see these unique piece and read about the women who influenced their creation. These unique plates will be on display in Simple Simon, Donegal Town from Thursday 5th March in celebration of International Women’s Day.

 

We would like take this opportunity to thank all the woman who participated in this event, the  stories their shared are inspiring and highlight why it’s so important women’s lives and voices are both valued and heard. And to Julie Griffiths and Simple Simon for organising and facilitating the display of these unique plates. We invite the community to stop by and see them 🙂

 

NCCWN Women’s Health & Well-being Statement

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We aim to provide empowering activities for the health and wellbeing of women. NCCWN-Donegal Women’s Network holds women’s well-being as a core value. Ourselves along with our 16 other NCCWN sister women’s projects also work from this value.

Please check out our-well being statement developed by
National Collective of Community Based Women’s Networks because we believe that supporting the health and well-being of women is vital in bringing about change and enriching women’s lives, families and communities.

 

PDF copy of this statement can be downloaded here Wellbeing Statement final 2.3.2020

This entry was posted on March 4, 2020, in 2020, health.

Women in the Home, New Beginnings course on offer in Letterkenny

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“When one door closes, another opens”

 

NCCWN-Donegal Women’s Network are pleased to be taking bookings for Women in the Home, New Beginnings course. This is a FREE 8 week course commencing on 24th March in Letterkenny and will be facilitated by the fabulous Emilywhelancoaching, Leading Life Coach & Motivational Speaker.

The aim of this course is to support women in life-long learning opportunities. Promoting personal development, well-being and positive mental health.


Who is this course for?

  • Women who left the workforce and did not return, for example women who left to start a family

  • Women unemployed and seeking only part-time work

  • Women in unpaid work in the home

  • Women who are unemployed and not looking for immediate paid work, for example, someone full-time at home looking after a young family and/or other dependent

  • Women getting a disability payment

 


Here is a snippet of the great feedback the course has received from past participants to-date:

“During the class I felt I could forget my problems, and instead used the time to get clarity on my thoughts, goals and plans for the future.”

 

“I am more confident and I’m thinking good thoughts. Positive things are coming to me. I’ve started doing flowering arranging and I can’t believe people want to buy them from me. This could be a business! I’m exploring many new things, and now I’m never at home!”

 


If you are interested in participating in this programme please fill in this form HERE and someone will be in contact with you. For further information please contact NCCWN Donegal Women’s Network by email on donegalwomensnetwork@gmail.com or 074 9722790. Booking is essential, book early to avoid disappointment.

Venue: Donegal Women’s Centre, Letterkenny
Dates: Tuesday 24th, 31st March 2020
7th, 21st, 28th April
5th, 12th & 19th May
Time: 10.00am-1.00pm

 


This course is funded through DLDC under the under SICAP.

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