International Women’s Day 2015 - Celebrate progress, evaluate gaps that impede gender equality

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Date: 08/03/2015
Location: Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire

International Women’s Day (IWD) will be marked globally on March 8, 2015.

This year, the African Development Bank will be marking the International Women’s Day with the theme “Empowering Women – Empowering Economies: Make it Happen!” The focus emphasises how gender equality, women’s empowerment, women’s full enjoyment of human rights and the eradication of poverty are essential to socio-economic development. It also stresses the vital role women play as agents of development.

As the Bank joins the international community in marking this day, it is critical to evaluate gaps that still remain in making gender equality a reality. The Bank will soon launch the first Africa Gender Equality Index 2015 that highlights gender disparities in 52 out of the continent’s 54 countries.

The IWD is thus a time to reflect on progress made, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities in Africa.

The theme sets the stage for the Bank to assess its contribution to women across different sectors of development, with a firm belief that ignoring women, who are half of Africa’s population, is ignoring humanity.

From sanitation, conflict management, water access, infrastructure, to food security, the Bank has invested in life-changing projects that have improved standards of women and girls on the continent.