International Women’s Day

Celebration of International Women’s Day, March 8, 2016: The Government of Senegal, Civil Society Organizations and UN agencies jointly mark this special day

Date: Thursday, March 17, 2016

Minister of Women, Family and Children, Mrs Mariama Sarr, at the official ceremony on March 8, 2016 at the Grand Theatre in Dakar.
Photo credit UN Women / Hamet Diop

"I am certain that with this great mobilization of gender equality advocates and the ongoing support from partners, we are on the right track to achieving the targeted goal of "Planet 50:50 by 2030". With these words and by wishing all women in Senegal and across the world a happy International Women’s Day (IWD), the honourable Minister of Women, Family and Children, Mrs Mariama Sarr, ended her speech at the official ceremony on March 8, 2016 at the Grand Theatre in Dakar.

In addition to the main event, UN Women supported and organised several other side-activities during the IWD celebations: On March 7, at the eve of the International Women's Day, UN Women, the Ministry of Women, Family and Children, UNIC (United Nations Information Centres), UNESCO and UNFPA organized a joint press conference to propagate the messages given by the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and UN Women Executive Director Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka. Further, the conference served as a platform to inform the media about engendered statistics and relevant accomplished advances, barriers as well as future projects linked to the theme of the day "50/50 Planet by 2030: Step it up for gender equality”.

On behalf of UN Women, Mrs Marie Pierre Raky Chaupin, the Coordinator of the Senegal Country Programme delivered a speech on behalf of the Technical and Financial Partners. She commended the Senegalese Government for the initiatives undertaken to enhance gender equality and she congratulated all women for their engagement and numerous attendance of the IWD official ceremony.

In the morning of March 08, a high-level panel was chaired by UNDP and UN Women on two key issues: (i) Gender equality in the SDGs and the existing barriers; (ii) Opportunities and obstacles to gender equality at a global level and in Senegal. This panel brought together 250 people, including several representatives from United Nations agencies, representatives of key line ministries, and civil society members.

Participants of the panel discussed the significance of International Women's Day, linking it to the SDGs and the Planet 50:50 goal within the context of Senegal.
Photo credit UN Women / Hamet Diop

Participants of the panel discussed the significance of International Women's Day, linking it to the SDGs and the Planet 50:50 goal within the context of Senegal. The recommendations of this panel, which were conveyed to the honourable Minister of Women, Family and Children, will be part of Senegal 's contribution to the next Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) that will be held in New York on March 14, 2016..

The HeForShe campaign was also present...
Throughout the day, on 08 March, a special stand was dedicated to the HeForShe campaign. A group of HeForShe ambassadors provided information to visitors, especially to men, on gender equality and women's rights. During the event, 92 men committed themselves in the HeForShe campaign.

Women entrepreneurs were given the opportunity to showcase their different products in the foyer
Photo credit UN Women / Hamet Diop

In the foyer where the official ceremony on March 08 was hosted, Women entrepreneurs were given the opportunity to showcase their different products. This facilitated networking opportunities amongst the women as well as enabled entrepreneurs to promote their products, ranging from fish processing, horticulture products, to paint, tannery and artisanal crafts.

Louga celebrated the IWD!
In Louga the activities to celebrate International Women’s Day started on Sunday, March 06 already. Free medical consultations were provided, which continued until Wednesday, March 09. These free cancer check-ups included breast cancer screenings, cervical and uterus cancer screenings, blood donations as well as general and paediatric consultations.
Moreover, a panel was organised to discuss "the challenges and issues of women’s participation in the development process". The panel was chaired by the Deputy Governor and enjoyed strong participation by local authorities.