Today around the world, we celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD) to note the achievements and contributions of women but also to remember the durable challenges to gender equality that continue to hamper our progress for a more just society and sustainable planet.
At CIP, among many things, we focus on sustainability of systems to produce sufficient food and nutrition for vulnerable communities. We know that sustainability with food systems rests in part on issues of access and care and representation from many different groups of people. We strongly acknowledge the key role of women in shaping more equitable and nutritious agri-food systems.
For these reasons, we embrace the UN’s slogan for this year’s IWD: Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow. Indeed, these words are embedded in all our approaches to land, food and water system transformation, and we believe, in all our work, that gender equality is necessary now to reach our goals in the future.
I have asked some of our colleagues to contribute ideas for this year’s IWD and I am pleased to share them with you here…
Sampriti Baruah, Project Coordinator, CIP India
Today is about celebrating women and the fruits of all our struggles across the globe for freedom and equity. Each success contributes to creating a new culture with hope and possibility for each one of us!
Cristina Fonseca, Senior Research Associate, Social and Nutritional Sciences
On this day, I feel proud to recognize women as the forgers of history! We reflect on what we have achieved but we also still have much to do to create a society that is equal, fair, peaceful and sustainable.
Farhana Ibrahim, Administrative Assistant, CIP Bangladesh
International Women’s Day is a celebration of the many wonderful women who have inspired and encouraged me to break down the boundaries set for us by social norms. I have been fortunate to have strong female role models in both my personal and professional life. On this day, I am reminded of my gratitude toward these women for empowering and inspiring me to be the best version of myself.
Hannele Lindqvist Kreuze, Leader, Genetic Genomics and Crop Improvement
While in some areas we have advanced, a lot remains to be done so that we, and more importantly our children, can live in a more equitable world. We need to raise awareness of the bias that exists and remove the barriers that prevent women and minorities from full participation in society.
Today, CIP and CGIAR work through the organization’s GENDER platform to collect the important gender research being conducted around the world today. Evidenced-based investigations like these will help us continue to progress toward loftier goals of gender equality, inclusive growth, and most importantly, a sustainable and equitable society for future generations to enjoy.
We have come a long way since the UN first declared International Women’s Day in 1975. But there is much work still to be done. In the meantime, we will continue to challenge inequality in all its forms and I want to thank everyone for their support and contributions to this cause.
Director General a.i.
International Potato Center