Hundreds gather to celebrate International Women’s Day Saturday

Through song, dance, ceremony, and personal stories, hundreds of women came together on the University of Wisconsin campus Saturday in support of gender parity and equality, diversity, and International Women’s Day.

“The goal is to gather to appreciate cultures from different corners of the world, and also raise awareness to issues that we need action on,” event organizer Emilie Songolo explained.

The theme of the event is “Press for Progress.” The gathering not only provided a place for healing through culture and community, but also examined the role of voice, media, and people speaking up in the fight for women’s rights in Madison and across the globe.

“There’s a circle where everyone is welcome, we are stronger together, and the campus of University of Wisconsin-Madison wants to be there to support that circle in whatever areas women need,” Women & Wellbeing in Wisconsin & the World Director Lori DiPrete-Brown said.

The day’s proceedings had a slightly different energy this year, with increased awareness for women’s issues due to the #MeToo and #TimesUp Movements.

Songolo says she sees more urgency and accountability in the world today, and hopes the sisterhood that is created on campus spreads throughout the country and the world.

“We’re hoping events like this empower women and girls, that yes, we do have a community, and we’re not alone.”

International Women’s Day is celebrated across the globe on March 8.