International Women’s Day will be observed on March 8 across the world including Pakistan to celebrate women’s achievements throughout history and across the nations. Thousands of events will be celebrated not just on this day but throughout March to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women.
Recognising the critical role and contribution of rural women, the official United Nations theme for International Women’s Day 2013 is “A promise is a promise: Time for action to end violence against women.” In some parts of the world, women represent 70 percent of the agricultural workforce, comprising 43 percent of agricultural workers world-wide.
Estimates reveal that if women had the same access to productive resources as men, they could increase yields on their farms by 20-30 percent, lifting 100-150 million out of hunger. The majority of the world’s 1.3 billion absolute poor are women. On average, women receive between 30 and 40 percent less pay than men earn for the same work.
Women also continue to be victims of violence, with rape and domestic violence listed as significant causes of disability and death among women world-wide. In 1975, during International Women’s Year, the United Nations began celebrating March, 8 as International Women’s Day. Two years later, in December 1977, the General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming a United Nations Day for Women’s Rights.