This year AHF’s activities commemorating the International Women’s Day (IWD) were as diverse as the challenges many women face in accessing health care and HIV services around the world. On March 8, our teams across 12 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas organized events to empower women to stand up and demand that their voices and needs be acknowledged and addressed.
The mood of the events ran the gamut from cheerful to serious. In Nigeria, for example, a group of about 20 women gathered in a park for a day of conversation, games and dancing, as a fun diversion from their busy schedules and a way to talk about wellness and women’s rights. In Nepal and Peru, AHF teams visited women’s prisons and offered HIV testing and educational services to a population of women who are especially vulnerable to HIV and TB.
In China, several HIV positive girls from the Shanxi Linfen Red Ribbon School spoke about their experiences to college students at the Tsinghua University. In Uganda, activities focused on women bartenders and waitresses in the slums. In South Africa, AHF engaged students at the Creative Arts college to express their experiences with gender inequality through dance and hip-hop.
There were many more, remarkable and inspirational activities dedicated to the commemoration of the IWD, which underscore the need for the international community to direct more resources, attention and political will toward programs and policies that allow women and girls to protect themselves and take charge of their health. We invite you to take a look at all of our IWD activities here.