Having picked up a flyer about events celebrating International Women's Day in Cambridge, I decided to join the Women For Women International March from Victoria Bridge to Magdalene Bridge. Michela and I arrived at the start just before 12. It was a cold morning but there was a lot of enthusiasm and we got a few smiles as Michela was the only child in the march. I'm not quite sure why, a few mums stopped to write messages on the banner but they didn't join.
After a few really good speeches, truly inspirational and heartfelt (unlike a lot of trite stuff spouted on TV debates) we marched towards Magdalene Bridge, bang in central Cambridge, where we heard a few more inspired speakers and enjoyed the performance of a drumming group. Michela really enjoyed this bit and I was glad to join in the dance to warm my frozen limbs.
Talking to some women during the march made me realise that although I have lost an active interest in politics (despite my degree in Political Sciences), I was still holding on to some ideals and trying to do my bit. I have always been shy with strangers and getting involved with various projects in the local community as a charity volunteer (for NCT and Breastfeeding Network) has made me feel active and more confident at times when looking after a child felt like I had mothballed my brain away for future use.
I'm full of admiration for the speakers, women who are involved in international projects to help and protect more vulnerable women. As a speaker pointed out, in the UK we do have a level of protection and access to medical help. It might not be perfect but we don't have to fear for our lives or starve like many women and children in war-ravaged countries.
Happy International Women's Day!