UN Women announced the theme for today’s International Women’s Day as being “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world”. This year’s theme celebrates the tremendous efforts of women and girls around the world in shaping an equal future and recovery from the COVID-19 global pandemic.
In a recent article, UN Women stated that this year’s theme is also aligned with the priority theme of the 65th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, “Women’s full and effective participation and decision-making in public life, as well as the elimination of violence, for achieving gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls”, and the flagship Generation Equality campaign, which calls for women’s right to decision-making in all areas of life, equal pay, equal sharing of unpaid care and domestic work, an end all forms of violence against women and girls, and health-care services that respond to their needs.
Around the world many women have stood, and continue to stand, on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis, as health care workers, caregivers, innovators, community organizers, full-time mothers turned teachers, and as some of the most exemplary and effective national leaders in combating the pandemic.
Women leaders and women’s organizations have demonstrated their skills, knowledge and networks to effectively lead in COVID-19 response and recovery efforts. For instance, Heads of Government in Denmark, Ethiopia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, New Zealand and Slovakia have been widely recognized for the rapidity, decisiveness and effectiveness of their national response to COVID-19, as well as the compassionate communication of fact-based public health information.
Yet, women are Heads of State and Government in only 20 countries worldwide.
“In addition to persistent pre-existing social and systemic barriers to women’s participation and leadership, new barriers have emerged with the COVID-19 pandemic. Across the world women are facing increased domestic violence, unpaid care duties, unemployment and poverty. Despite women making up a majority of front-line workers, there is disproportionate and inadequate representation of women in national and global COVID-19 policy spaces.
To uphold women’s rights and fully leverage the potential of women’s leadership in pandemic preparedness and response, the perspectives of women and girls in all of their diversity must be integrated in the formulation and implementation of policies and programmes in all spheres and at all stages of pandemic response and recovery.” – UN Women
Bringing relevance to the Wigmore Association and what International Women’s Day and ‘women in leadership’ means to us as an association. Our purpose as an association is to ‘work together to help our families thrive’ and it will come as no surprise that so many families we work so closely together with include strong female leaders and figures. More than one of our Wigmore firms continue to focus on ‘women of wealth’ and make it a goal to ensure that their voices and stories are not only heard but understood.
It is our belief as an association that female leadership can come in all shapes and sizes, from the importance of the role of a mother imparting family values upon the next generation and creating a nurturing environment in which for her wider family to flourish, through to female entrepreneurs and family business ‘heads’, who continue to innovate, inspire and progress their respective businesses.
The theme for this years’ International Women’s Day is incredibly strong and reflects the ever-developing world in which we live. The importance of the myriad of female roles in a family, only two of which are mentioned above, is something that we will continue to reflect in our individual and collective strategies, through the support, education and empowerment of our client families, of all generations.
Throughout this next year as an association, we will look forward to sharing some of our firm’s recent work on the topic of women of wealth and the varying types of ‘female leadership’.
Additional information related to the United Nations Observance of IWD 2021 is available on UN Women’s website.
 As of 8 November 2020. These data are compiled by UN Women based on information from UN Permanent Missions; only elected Heads of State are taken into consideration
Source: UN Women: https://www.unwomen.org/en/news/stories/2020/11/announcer-international-womens-day-2021