I wished my six-year-old daughter a Happy International Women’s Day before she slept, and she asked me from her bed if that meant it was a day for her.
And I said yes.
Of course yes.
And she asked me if we should have a party. She likes a good party.
She also likes spinning out bedtime.
But it got me thinking, International Women’s Day is a day for celebration of women’s achievements, of all our successes, but also all the sacrifices women have made so that we can enjoy the lives we lead now.
It can also be a marker in the sand to see how far we have come since the last IWD.
Looking back over the last 12 months, it has been a complete shit storm of abuses of power, cover-ups and collusions.
From Harvey Weinstein to Kevin Spacey to Max Stafford-Clark, women have, for decades, been compromised and abused in the pursuit of their careers by men in power.
The #metoo campaign gave people a voice to come forward and out men who have got away with this for far too long. And women did come forward. In their hundreds, thousands, to share their stories and gather strength from one another.
But where do we go from here?
How do we continue to strive forward, to gain momentum, to feel like things are getting better, becoming fairer, more transparent?
It’s starting to happen. Women are forcing things to happen.
A group of women have taken the power back when a majority female investor group bought the Harvey Weinstein company. Weinstein won’t receive any of the $500 million sale of company assets, and despite taking on about $225m worth of debt, the women are setting up a $90 million victims' compensation fund.
Another group of women are campaigning to buy the Theatre Royal Haymarket theatre with the aim of making it a venue that showcases female-led work, making it a supportive space for women to create work.
As women we need to support each other. To celebrate each other.
Because there is nothing stronger, more terrifying, more powerful, than a fucking incredible group of women who look after each other, who listen, who protect, who nurture each other.
Who celebrate each other’s achievements, and support each other through the shit times.
The women who have gone before us have fought for our places in the world now.
We owe it to them and our daughters and granddaughters to finish this.
To not turn a blind eye, to not accept that things are so because it is ‘just how it’s always been.’
Let’s support each other and know that our voices are louder when they are in chorus.
So deep breath.
Put your best fighting foot forward…
And Happy International Women’s Day brilliant women.
Thank you for being in my life.