March 8 marks International Women’s Day, a holiday celebrating the successful journey women have taken in the pursuit of equality. But as we saw in January’s Women’s marches, we’re not quite finished yet. The holiday also serves to plan where the ambitions of women should be headed next, and you can (and should!) be involved.
If you’re looking for a way to support women’s health, but don’t have the opportunity to get out to a planned march or event, we’ve rounded up the best organizations that are in need of your helping hand.
Women For Women International
This organization focuses specifically on marginalized women in countries experiencing war by providing health, business and legal support. You can Sponsor A Sister this IWD, which provides a woman in need with food and clean water, while educating her about nutritious and sustainable health practices. The sponsorship will also provide your sister with a support group to begin the healing process from the horrors of war, physical abuse and sexual violence. And as a special bonus, you get to exchange photos and written letters with your new sister — you give a human connection, rather than just a check.
By working with local churches, World Relief helps to build sustainable communities by providing immediate financial and educational support and by working to instill the values of equality and respect within its people. This IWD, their goal is to create a better world for women; World Relief vows to support women with proper health care and knowledge of their health care rights and to train women to be future health educators for their community. So your donation’s impact has the potential to grows exponentially.
ONE is running a campaign specifically for IWD with the goal of providing an equal education to women in impoverished countries. Beyond what it would mean for her financial security, an education also provides a young girl with the promise of a healthier life; in fact, along with the independence that can come with sexual health education, ONE’s research suggests that children who finished secondary school are seven times less likely to contract HIV. With this campaign, you can simply sign a letter to show your support or make a donation toward a specific cause, such as the alleviation of infectious diseases or the support of maternal and child health.
This organization is working to establish worldwide standards of gender equality to ensure every woman has and is aware of her human rights. When it comes to women’s health, UN Women uses donations to provide services to particularly vulnerable women, which include protecting and emotionally supporting survivors of sexual violence while facilitating injured women’s access to police and medical care.
Global Fund For Women
These champions for equality have the goal of making sure women know exactly what their rights are and ensuring that countries and communities honor them. Their scope includes providing women with a life free of fear and violence — including domestic abuse, sexual assault and genital mutilation — along with the sexual health care necessary for a safe pregnancy and childbirth. You can make single or monthly gifts to the future of women worldwide.
And of course, after helping a woman in need, take some of those feel-good hormones and do something good for your own health. Make that doctor's appointment. Go on a walk to destress. Bask in the power of women helping women and the unmatched healing it brings.