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Women’s Day: Taking stock in equality and safety


International Women’s Day is now an official holiday in Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, China (for women only), Cuba, Georgia, Guinea-Bissau, Eritrea, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Madagascar (for women only), Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Nepal (for women only), Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Vietnam and Zambia. Men have an International Day as well. November 19 marks International Men’s Day, promoting boys’ and men’s health, gender equality, gender relations, and highlighting positive male role models.

Every year onMarch 8, people around the world observe International Women’s Day. Festivities around town and around the world celebrate women’s achievements while calling for greater equality and safety. The Prescott-Russell’s Coalition to End Violence towards Women held their third International Women’s Day celebration at theRoyal CanadianLegion in Hawkesbury onMarch 5, offeringmultiple free activities, yoga, scrapbooking, ameal and information on personal care and local services. Organizations highlighting women’s safety, health, fitness and well-being were on site to give information, advice and free samples. Necessary services such as Valoris, Victim Services, Maison Interlude, Centre Novas, and many more were handing out pamphlets and giving information on their services. The event also housed several health and wellness booths from local establishments such as Pour Elle, a women’s gym that will be holding an open house onMarch 15 and 16; Le Chenail Cultural Centre; Chakaura, which offers a number of self development programs and workshops; Reflexology, offering cancer coaching, massage, and wellness; L’Amie de la santé; naturopath and rejuvenation therapy; and more. “Different organizations put together a committee to put this event together,” said Linda Smith from Victim services. “We put on four or five different events each year, includingMarche des Hommes andMarche des Femmes. Today, we invite women to come enjoy free drinks, a free dinner, as well as information on what is available for women in our community.” The last hour of the evening was celebrated with the Chorale de l’Amitié de L’Orignal. Celebrating since 1911 The first International Women’s Day occurred on March 19, 1911 in Austria, Denmark, Germany, and Switzerland. More than one million women and men attended rallies campaigning for better rights for women including giving them the opportunity to vote, hold political office, better training, and safer working conditions.

Anne Jutras from Centre Novas, Sylvie Gravel from Maison Interlude, Rachel Lamoureux fromPrescott-Russell’s Coalition to End Violence towards Women, and Linda Smith from Victim Services, at the International Women’s Day event at the Legion in Hawkesbury, March 8.

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Anne Jutras from Centre Novas, Sylvie Gravel from Maison Interlude, Rachel Lamoureux from Prescott-Russell’s Coalition to End Violence towardsWomen, and Linda Smith fromVictim Services, at the International Women’s Day event at the Legion in Hawkesbury, March 8.

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