Happy Women's Month!

Happy Women's Month!

The yearly observances of the Women’s Role in History Month mandated by Proclamation No. 227 s. 1988, the first week of March as Women’s Week and March 8 as Women’s Rights and International Peace Day mandated by Proclamation No. 224 s. 1988, and March 8 of every year as National Women’s Day mandated by Republic Act (RA) 6949 s. 1990 seeks to emphasize gender equality and further bring the significant and indispensable role of women in society to the fore.

According to the Philippine Commission on Women or PCW, "the 2024 National Women’s Month Celebration aims to capitalize on the recurring theme “WE for gender equality and inclusive society,” introduced in 2023. This theme launched to renew commitment to the advocacy, builds upon the accomplishments under the 2016-2022 theme, “WE Make CHANGE Work for Women.” The earlier theme stressed the importance of compassionate and harmonized networks towards gender equality and women’s empowerment (GEWE)."

For 2024, the sub-theme is "Lipunang Patas sa Bagong Pilipinas: Kakayahan ng Kababaihan, Patunayan!" This year's NWMC calls for a Bagong Pilipinas, where women are given equitable opportunities and not hindered by gender biases and discriminatory stereotypes. It also aims to showcase and harness the full potential of women and girls in actively engaging in and reaping the benefits of national growth and development.

When an inventory of the third-level officials of the Department of Education in Region III was informally conducted, it was discovered that out of the 21 Schools Division Superintendents, 11 women are occupying the said position, slightly outnumbering the male officials. This is an indication that equality in terms of opportunities for leadership roles is very much established given that the journey to become a full-fledged Schools Division Superintendent is indeed grueling as it requires certain eligibilities and skills.

In the PCW website, it is stated that "in the 2023 Global Gender Gap Index (GGGI) Report by the World Economic Forum (WEF), the Philippines maintains its status as the leading Asian country in narrowing the gender gap. The country has attained 79.1 percent gender parity, securing the 16th position out of 146 countries globally—a rise of three places from its previous ranking. In the East Asia and the Pacific region, the Philippines holds the second spot among its neighboring countries, trailing only behind New Zealand. Notably, it stands as the sole Asian nation within the top twenty, with Singapore following at the 49th position. The Global Gender Gap Index evaluates gender equality and progress across four crucial dimensions: Economic Participation and Opportunity, Educational Attainment, Political Empowerment, and Health and Survival."

On a lighter note, numerous jokes and memes about women having the upper hand in relationships have surfaced through decades, such that "batas", "kumander" and "palaging tama" have become generic labels to wives and girlfriends. While we can take this as a funny matter, it is true that maybe, men were designed to please women because in a traditional set-up wherein a gentleman courts a lady, he shows that he is willing to do everything that the latter wishes or desires just to be able to win her heart. In that context alone, it can be established that women should be taken with high regard and that men should please them and ensure that they are comfortable and satisfied.

And now that women like us have become empowered in such a way that we can prove that we can do the things that men do, we can say that in the traditional and modern contexts, women are to be respected, valued, and recognized for the many wonderful things that they can do.

To quote Michelle Obama: "There is not limit to what we, as women, can accomplish."


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