CORK City Council and its Women’s Caucus have announced a jam-packed programme of events to celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD) on Tuesday, March 8.
The programme will kick off with two virtual events for primary school students in the morning before the first main event at lunchtime where Cork City Library on Grand Parade will host an hour-long event titled A Dialogue with Cork City Council’s Women’s Caucus.
Caucus member, Cllr Colette Finn will read from Caroline Criado-Perez’s book Invisible Women: Exposing Data Bias in a World Designed for Men, and this will be followed by a Q&A session with members of the caucus in the library from 1-2pm.
As part of the decade of commemorations for International Women’s Day 2022, the council in conjunction with St Peter’s Cork, will make public the screening of Endurance & Engagement: Cork City Women in the 1920s.
This short documentary, commissioned by the council, looks at the lives of ordinary women in Cork city during the turbulent period of the struggle for independence and how they were impacted by the violence and unrest.
The Lord Mayor of Cork, Cllr Colm Kelleher, said the documentary “explores themes of loss, political engagement, social justice, conflicting loyalties and uncovers many of the challenging conditions endured by women in those dramatic times”.
“I wish to acknowledge the support of the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media and congratulate everyone involved in its production,” he said.
The documentary, directed by Ciara Buckley of Wombat Media and researched by Anne Twomey of Shandon History Group, Dr Helene O’Keeffe of UCC School of History, and Gerry White will be available to view on the council’s website from March 8.
Finally on IWD, a mural project, entitled Women, Past & Present will be launched at Tory Top Library in Ballyphehane.
The project, a partnership between Cork City Council and the Ballyphehane 1916-2016 Commemorative Committee, will involve a mural on the theme of the Decade of Centenaries and Cork City Council’s ground-breaking Women’s Caucus.
The caucus seeks to increase women’s engagement and representation in local politics.
Meanwhile, Munster Technological University (MTU) will host their annual celebration of Empowering Women on International Women’s Day. The event aims to send “a strong message of support, solidarity, hope, and encouragement”, from the MTU community. The online event will take place on March 8th at 1pm and will be hosted by the Republic of Work.
The theme for International Women’s Day this year is #BreakTheBias, which highlights the importance of challenging biases and misconceptions, in the interest of creating a more inclusive and gender-equal world.
MTU said: “This is a theme that resonates strongly with MTU, as a core value is to support, encourage, and nurture inclusivity, diversity, and equality within the student, staff, and alumni, community.”
The occasion will showcase three MTU graduates, who will highlight how they have managed to ‘Break the Bias’ in their chosen careers. The speakers are Dr Sarah Bullman, associate professor and a leading cancer researcher in Seattle, USA; Sarah Kelleher, a former international hockey player, Premier League, and U18 coach and director of Leading Edge; and Timmy Long of the Two Norries Podcast and managing director of ReviveMe Property Maintenance.
The event will be opened by MTU president Prof Maggie Cusack. In keeping with the student-centric ethos of the university, the MC for the event will be Orlaith McGowan, a fourth year mechanical engineering student. Students from MTU’s Cork School of Music will provide specially chosen music to fit the theme of the day. Various video messages of support from Irish people across all walks of life will also be shown.
Speaking in advance of the event, Dr Bullman said: “I am delighted to be returning to my Alma Mater to share my story of my professional journey — in the hope that it will inspire the next generation of female leaders to dare to lead in their chosen field.”
Prof Margaret Linehan, chair of MTU’s International Women’s Day steering group said: “I believe that collectively we can Break the Bias. Women’s empowerment is a critical element of gender equality, and gender equality is not a ‘women’s issue’, nor can it be advanced solely through women’s efforts. Men can participate actively in this agenda.”
The event is free of charge, but registration is necessary, delegates can register at mtuempoweringwomen.ie.