by Hilary Alexander, President of the NDC Women’s Arm in commemoration of International Women’s Day 2021
It is my pleasure as the President of the Women’s Arm of the NDC to address you as we commemorate International Women’s Day. I am delighted to be here, and I thank God for His grace and mercy.
As I stand here, I remember a great woman in the book of Judges CH. 4 – Deborah, the greatest woman Judge and Prophetess of Israel at the time. Her role was to speak to the Nation of Israel as God directed her. She was a very powerful woman who judged without fear or favour. She sat in Parliament as many women today. Her mission was simply to declare truth and stand for justice.
It is from this backdrop I fully embrace the theme chosen to celebrate International Women’s Day 2021, “Choose to Challenge.”
Challenge – A task or activity that is new and exciting but also difficult. It also means to call someone to take part in a contest or to show their ability or strength.
This theme is so appropriate in this time, as there are so many issues and injustices that confront our women today that we need to challenge. As women, we must stand up and challenge all forms of abuse and inequality that are meted out to our sisters in society.
International Women’s Day is celebrated on 8 March worldwide, observing the political, social and economic achievement of women. Over the years, the objective of International Women’s Day celebration has evolved as a celebration of appreciation, respect and love towards women. Our women can gain respect when they empower themselves, to gain confidence to stand up and lobby for what they want and secure the conditions under which they work and live.
UN Woman Executive Director, Humzde Mlamb Nycuka said, “We need women representation that reflects all women and girls in all their diversities and abilities across all cultural, social, economic and political situation. This is the only way we will get real social changes that incorporate women in decision making as equal and benefit all.”
This theme is appropriate in this time, as there are many issues and injustices that confront our women that need to be challenged. As women, we must stand up and challenge all forms of abuse and inequality that are meted out to us.
The traditional role of women as homemakers has changed, as we embark on higher education and pursue non-traditional professions.
Women are at the forefront of battles in many instances. We are on the frontline in the fight against Covid-19 as frontline workers, scientists, doctors and caregivers.
When women lead we see positive results. The most efficient and exemplary responses to the Covid-19 pandemic were led by women. Take Jacinda Arden the Prime Minister of New Zealand.
Women, I encourage all of us to continue to press on in our efforts for better lives for ourselves and our families. I admonish you to be strong, positive and determined. Do not be daunted by challenging circumstances. Do not allow your situations to define you. Do not be daunted by negative small talk. As women, we must recognise that challenges make us stronger and so, together we can achieve great things. Let us continue to support each other and lend a hand wherever we can to lift up each other
As we celebrate today let us take the opportunity to salute the strength, resilience, sacrifice and achievements of all women the world over and here in Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique.
We remember at this time some of our NDC women who have served in politics and in the public service. We are motivated by them. Women like Sister Joan Purcell, Ann Peters, Sister Gloria Payne Benfield, Pauline Andrew, Margaret Neckles, Franka Alexis Bernadine, Ann John and Claudette Joseph.
We are extremely happy for the privilege to come together in this manner to celebrate, women. As we interact and socialise, let us do so with love and harmony and let us Choose TO Challenge!