2022 Women’s History Month theme

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Women's History Month

We all have women in our lives that have made a difference and of course, a special one that gave us life. While we may recognize the individual women that have helped to shape us, many women in history have been overlooked. As a reminder of the importance of women, we celebrate Women’s History Month every March in the United States. Let’s take a look at why we honor women, past themes of the month, and ways to appreciate women! 

What is Women’s History Month?

Women’s History Month is a celebration recognizing the contributions women have made throughout history. It’s an opportunity to reflect on the women who influenced everything from science to politics, leading to change and progress. March has been the official month of observation since 1987.

Why do we celebrate Women’s History Month?

International Women’s Day preceded Women’s History Month, and the idea was conceived at the Second International Socialist Women’s Conference in 1910. Clara Zetkin, a German activist, proposed Mar 8th as International Women’s Day in 1921. From there the idea of a day celebrating female workers became popular in Europe and then later caught on in America.

In 1978, the Sonoma, California school district organized a weeklong celebration of women’s contributions. This women’s celebration came out of the desire to recognize how women have impacted history, culture, and society. It was a watershed moment for recognizing women in the United States. 

Theme for Women’s History Month for 2022

The National Women’s History Alliance chooses a theme each year for Women’s History Month. 2022’s Women’s History theme is “Providing Healing, Promoting Hope”. This year’s theme is a tribute to the work of caregivers and frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic and recognizes the many ways women provided healing and hope throughout history.

Even in ancient times, women were healers that worked to end suffering, while giving hope to a better future. This year’s theme encourages communities to honor local women who are counselors, clerics, artists, teachers, doctors, nurses, and others. These women in particular help ease suffering, restore dignity, and make decisions to improve our personal wellbeing.

Past Women’s History Month themes

2021: Valiant Women of the Vote: Refusing to be Silenced

2020: Valiant Women of the Vote

2019: Visionary Women: Champions of Peace and Nonviolence

2018: Nevertheless She Persisted: Honoring Women Who Fight All  Forms of Discrimination Against Women

2017: Honoring Trailblazing Women in Labor and Business

2016: Working to Form a More Perfect Union – Honoring Women in Public Service and Government

2015: Weaving the Stories of Women’s Lives

The importance of Women’s History Month

Women’s Celebrations are important even beyond recognizing the many contributions women have made to history and society in the United States. It is also a chance to bring awareness to the oppression that modern women face throughout the world.

For example, the gender wage gap between men and women leaves room for plenty of improvement. According to the World Economic Forum, large gender gaps remain in average income and many emerging jobs are deeply unequal. There is still a lot of work to do with removing barriers in the workplace and society for women. Women’s History Month is a reminder of the sacrifices that women in history made and also the injustices that still persist today.

History of National Women’s History Month

The Santa Rosa, California school was the first group to celebrate Women’s History. Starting in March 1978, the organizers wanted to encourage the contributions of women to society. They selected a week in early March to celebrate women to correspond with March 8th’s International Women’s Day.

Other cities across the country joined Santa Rosa in celebrating Women’s History Week. U.S. President Jimmy Carter declared the week of March 8th as National Women’s History Week in 1980. The week-long event became a month-long one in 1987. That’s when Congress passed a resolution that designated March as Women’s History Month. Since then, Women’s History Month has been held every March.

7 ways to celebrate National Women’s History Month

Looking for ways to celebrate Women’s History Month in 2022? Here are 7 ideas on how you can show your support.

Learn about the history of women’s rights 

This is a great time to brush up on the history of women’s rights. Use this year’s theme of “Providing Healing, Promoting Hope” to find women in history who have provided healing and hope.

Spread awareness on social media

Use your social media platforms to share articles, inspiring quotes, and other women-central content. Spreading the word is an easy way to celebrate and share knowledge in your circles.

Send a thank you to an inspiring woman

National Women’s History celebrates not only significant women in history but also the women in our lives that have made a difference too. Write a note to acknowledge your gratitude to let them know how they’ve made a difference.

Support a women’s nonprofit

To make a measurable difference, support a charity that works with women or girls in need. There are still many disparities that women face today and your contribution will help move the needle.

Shop from women-owned businesses

Women are still the minority of business owners, although the numbers are growing. Show your support to local female leaders, entrepreneurs, and service providers.

Support women artists and authors

Women in the literary and art fields have contributed significant pieces of work throughout history. Recognize their achievements by reading books from women authors or listening to music by empowering women musicians.

Educate yourself on today’s women issues

Women have made a lot of progress, but there are still many obstacles like wage gaps, harassment, and unconscious biases. Learn about these issues so that you can push for change.

Celebrating women of the past, present and future 

Women have a significant impact on our history and Women’s Celebration gives us the chance to recognize their contributions. Despite the progress, there are still disparities that we must acknowledge to overcome those obstacles. Take time to celebrate women in March by supporting one of the ideas shared here. Small actions can snowball into a wider movement that can be of historic significance.

FAQ

When did women’s history month start?

It originally started in 1978 with the Sonoma school district in California as the same week as Women’s International Day (March 8th). Congress passed a resolution in 1987 that changed it to a month-long celebration.

When did women’s history month start?

It originally started in 1978 with the Sonoma school district in California as the same week as Women’s International Day (March 8th). Congress passed a resolution in 1987 that changed it to a month-long celebration.

When is women’s history month?

Women’s History Month occurs every year in March

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