International Women’s Day: get involved

Donate, dance or dress in purple

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Sunday 8 March 2015 is International Women’s Day, which we think is the best kind of day because it’s dedicated to celebrating the economic, political and social achievements of women, and calls for greater gender equality across the globe.

As part of the International Women's Day celebrations the team behind major new film Suffragette sat for a special portrait (left) [back row, L-R: Sarah Gavron (Director), Helen Pankhurst (Great-granddaughter of Emmeline Pankhurst), Laura Pankhurst (Great-great-granddaughter of Emmeline Pankhurst), Alison Owen (Producer). Front row, L-R: Abi Morgan (Screenwriter), Anne-Marie Duff (Actor), Meryl Streep (Actor), Carey Mulligan (Actor), Helena Bonham Carter (Actor), Faye Ward (Producer)].

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‘Make It Happen’ is the 2015 theme – so action is key. If you want to see more women in leadership roles and better awareness and recognition of women’s rights globally, then make it known.

ELLE’s guide to getting involved:

DONATE

Campaigning for better education for all children globally is key to securing a better future for women. Sarah Brown’s education charity Theirworld is the charity partner of Hearst Empowering Women (an initiative that champions everyday feminism). Donate now.

Refuge is a charity that provides protection and provision for women and children suffering domestic violence. They have a network of emergency safe houses and also work to raise awareness about the violence women face at home. Donate now.

DEBATE AND CELEBRATE

Now in its fifth year, Southbank Centre’s Women of the World (WOW) Festival has become an outstanding cultural event championing women, featuring voices from all over the world. Head to the Southbank Centre this weekend to soak up the atmosphere and surround yourself with inspiring women.

DANCE

Dance like no one’s watching with Comic Relief and one of ELLE’s inspiring women, Zoe Jackson (above, an entrepreneur and founder of Living the Dream performing arts company). On International Women’s Day, 2,000 fundraisers, some instructed by Zoe, will fill Wembley Arena for Comic Relief’s Danceathon. If you can’t be at the stadium, you can pop, lock and bop along at home using the BBC Red Button.

TWEET

Shout loudly in support using @womensday and a multitude of hashtags: #MakeItHappen #womensday #IWD2015 #internationalwomensday #PaintItPurple. Our voices are loudest when we raise them together. Spread the word.

HELP CLOSE THE GENDER GAP

EY, an organisation committed to building a better working world, estimates it will be another 80 years until gender parity in the workplace is achieved. They are committed to accelerating progress with their ‘Women. Fast forward’ program. Find out more.

WEAR PURPLE

Display your solidarity by dressing head-to-toe in purple. Back in 1908, the Women's Social and Political Union (WSPU) in Great Britain chose purple, white and green to symbolise the plight of the Suffragettes. Women’s Day has singled out purple as its signature colour, traditionally associated with justice and dignity.

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