On Friday March 8, people of all genders, ages and backgrounds around the globe will celebrate and champion the experiences, achievements and perspectives of women for International Women’s Day (IWD). The day has been recognised for well over a century, highlighting the cultural, economic, social and political influences of womankind, while encouraging gender equality.
We’ve come a long way as a global society since the first 1911 IWD gathering, but we've still got a way to go in making a more inclusive, equal world for women. The theme for the 2019 event is #BalanceforBetter, which reigns in the focus on gender balance across industries, political representation and experiences. To explore these ideas more thoroughly, you can check out the many events happening around Sydney to mark the occasion.
The big ticket for the weekend following IWD is All About Women (Mar 10). As the name suggests, this long-running day of talks, workshops, panel discussions and live podcast recordings covers a broad spectrum of social, political and economic issues, investigating how these affect and are effected by the female-identifying population. Get ready for change-making speakers, intriguing real-life stories and creative hands-on activities at the Sydney Opera House.
Illustration: Aurélie Garnier
Looking to meet other innovative female business folk? The Loft (Mar 8) will connect entrepreneurs with an evening of talks, networking activities and one-on-one mentoring sessions at the CBD co-working space WeWork. Talk shop and get inspired by leading business women across media, finance, event management and creative industries. But before you get stuck into swapping business cards, you can toast to these hard-working women with a strong latté at the International Women's Day Breakfast (Mar 8) in Manly. The event recognises the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women and will feature a guest talk by Walkley Award-winning Australian journalist Tracey Spicer. You'll find more local champions of equality speaking about our society's progress and modern day challenges faced by women at the Sydney International Women's Day March (Mar 9). The inclusive walk starts at the Archibald Fountain in Hyde Park at 11am.
If you’re excited by the business of fermentation and distilling, join the women making some of Australia’s best booze at Meet the Makers: Women in Beer, Wine and Spirits (Mar 8-9) for a tasting session at Australian Technology Park. And if you’re hungry after the tipples, head to Rag and Famish (Mar 8) in North Sydney. They’re offering people who identify as female a 22 per cent discount on all food and drinks at the pub from 5-7pm in an effort to raise awareness about the gender pay gap. Want to make it dinner and a show? Settle in at Golden Age Cinema (Mar 8) for a night of indie screenings by female filmmakers.
For insights into women’s experiences of culture, identity and parenthood, listen to the diverse line-up of speakers at the Casual Powerhouse’s free event Girls Talk Women’s Work (Mar 7). To delve even deeper into the creative world, head to the North Sydney Community Centre for a day of talks by multidisciplinary artists and performers at In Conversation: Creative Women (Mar 9). Continue your artistic investigation at the Cooee Art Gallery in Paddington at the opening night for their new exhibition Women in Colour (Mar 8). The collection is made up of 60 pieces by Indigenous female artists which explore the roles and experiences of First Nations women in contemporary Australia.