What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

By 2022
International Women's Day

As we recognise and celebrate International Women’s Day we asked some of our team to give us their thoughts on what International Women’s Day means to them. Here’s what they had to say.

Christine Espinosa-Erlanda, Senior Associate

International woman’s day is a celebration to uphold and celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of women all throughout the world. It is also a platform to promote awareness where boldness is encouraged to highlight the difficulties and focus on solutions that needs to be addressed on gender stereotypes and support equal representation on this day, I can be who I am and be who I am with confidence, knowing that my contributions as a woman are valued and appreciated by everyone around me, not just my female peers.

Successful businesses do not conform to gender or race, and the proof can be seen in the achievements of women worldwide. The more we speak and support and elevate women, the closer we bring ourselves to a future where we will have an equal representation of men and women acting and deciding on the future of cities. We can significantly impact our future when we are free of preconceived notions and biases and as well create communities where gender norms do not define a child’s future or women’s potential.

As an architect mum I have to balance the demands of the company with the needs of my family.  I have to be incredibly flexible dividing my time efficiently between the office and home. Gender really is of little importance when it comes to delivery, it is all about individual performance.

Safa Saleem, Assistant Architect

International Women’s Day to me is a celebration of the essence of a woman and the many roles that she takes on as well as her achievements in innumerous fields. Whether it is the love and affection of a mother, the selfless nature of a woman as a caretaker, the strong presence of a meticulous working woman. There aren’t any limits to the roles women take up daily.

Every strong woman out there has a great story that has inspired me and made me want to push myself further at different points in my life. Every woman who I’ve met has taught me an invaluable lesson in patience, resilience, and hard work. Every woman I’ve met has made me want to inspire, educate and be a strong influence to the younger generation because I believe it is extremely important for young girls to recognise their own self-worth and learn the importance of financial independence.

That is what International Women’s Day is about to me, celebrating every woman out there and their role that shape the foundations of a better tomorrow.  

Swati Rokade, Associate

International Women’s Day is about inspiration and awareness. It’s about equality and empowerment and it’s about sisterhood and solidarity.

“The most important thing one woman can do for another is expand her sense of actual possibilities. Every woman’s success should be an inspiration to another,” Adrienne Rich.

Celebrating International Women’s Day is just the same. By acknowledging and commemorating the incredible achievements of women in different fields, it serves as a platform of inspiration. By highlighting issues which reflect the plight of women, violence against women and discrimination, it serves as a platform of awareness. By bringing forth issues related to equal rights and pay parity, it serves as a platform of equality.

Do we need one day to celebrate women? No. Womanhood can be celebrated every single day.

But a day that can spur a thought process towards an equal society, is worth celebrating.

International women’s day started as an idea/ a strategy to promote equal rights for women in the early 20th century, especially the right to vote. From those origins, it has gradually evolved to encompass other related issues which focus on women’s rights, domestic abuse, violence against women and discrimination.

And while we have seen progress in many avenues, we still have a long way to go. Our world is hugely diverse made up of different countries, societies, social constructs. There are still societies where women still do not have equal rights, are still subjugated and face discrimination. Only when we can acknowledge a problem, can we aim to find a solution.

A day that makes people aware of this is worth celebrating.