CELEBRATING
108TH INTERNATIONAL WOMEN'S DAY  
WITH OVER 108 MESSAGES FROM AROUND THE WORLD

“International Women’s Day 2021, on March 8th, is a reminder to US about ‘WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP’.  Achieving an EQUAL FUTURE in Covid -19 world.


You & me, let’s ‘CHOOSE TO CHALLENGE’ for Justice Dignity Hope. Since 1913, every year is a constant reminder for Gender Equality with these Challenges. We should be celebrating the achievements of Women who across cultures band 🤝 together for Parity & happier Womanhood.

My ideal is MAYA ANGELOU. Whose expression & inspiration to overcome discrimination was through powerful writing & literature.


Why do Women have to remind the world every year on March 8th?

This should be a Celebration of Womanhood, who is the Epitome of LOVE SHARING CARING PURPOSEFUL POSITIVE LEADERSHIP Qualities of an ENLIGHTENED BEING.”

Anita Choudhrie, Path to Success, London


                                                                               

“In my opinion every woman is empowered . .. all depends upon how she wishes to use that. I admire the woman who cooks, cleans and also goes out to work so that she can give her children the education that she probably lacks. The woman who keeps our skies secure for us and the one who walks shoulder to shoulder with her army colleagues to keep our borders free of enemies. Here’s to every woman of the world.💐🍸💐” 

Neelam Vedehra, New Delhi


                                                                                

“May it be the Celebration of Life for all, of which every woman is the most apt metaphor and the most poetic and relevant expression. May it be the Celebration of Love and Positive Energy. May it be the Celebration of Harmony! This is my sincerest and greatest wish in occasion of Women’s Day on March 8th. Because harmony represents the culmination. It represents balance achieved, it represents having the right relationship with the world around us, it represents the feeling of proportion that allows us to walk through life with the necessary strength and required levity.

There are many and myriad ways to achieve harmony. They are both within and outside of us. Everything that diminishes dignity or expresses oppression moves in the opposite direction to harmony. The path to achieving it is complicated, yet I believe that the drive towards it represents an excellent compass for our choices in our everyday lives.

I would like to wish you a “Women’s Day” that is filled with positivity, responsibility and commitment. A day that celebrates listening, trust, passion, action and collaboration: all pieces of the same mosaic that we women know all too well, because we are called upon to create it every day, whether at work or in our families.

I hope that all women, as well as all men – as all of us are children of the same Father – always pursue equal dignity, equal opportunity and equal respect in everywhere way can, yet do not fall into the trap of denying diversity. Because the latter have value. I hope that every woman may identify her own role in society and fully understand her crucial strengths: not in competition with men, but standing side-by-side, so that we may all express our potential to the fullest.”

Veronica Berti

                     

                 

“Running a business with a women workforce I believe the celebration of women lies in Us believing in Us. It is imperative that we remember that the strength of women only lies in standing together and recognising our strength is our mental tenacity and not a matter of muscle.”

Shafali Deewanjee, India



“This day is no different to any other. As women at every juncture and every day have to rise above themselves to live and survive in conditions much above what is humanly possible.

I dedicate this message to all those who have played a personal role in my life, the most important being my sister Hanit Mangat. A woman with such immense dignity and depth, who has helped everyone in her orbit to be the best and strongest version of themselves.”

Neelu Singh, India



“Fighting injustice, rising above your circumstances, these are words which were used for the previous generation. Today it is doing all of the above and empowering those around you so that we can build a world with equality and justice for everyone.”

Surina Narula MBE, London

“The beauty of female empowerment lies all around us if we look...

Feel the beauty of that inspiration inside and out and know we are designed to be strong but always stronger together.”

Victoria Cook, London


“Every woman is a woman of substance. Each one’s journey, and striving to be a better version of herself, makes her strong and spectacular. To every woman reading, I’d like to say that the power of gratitude and hard work; of prayerfulness; and of a zest for life - no matter what happens - can truly transform you, and those around you.  Spread the Love ❤️ “

Jyotika Jhalani New Delhi India



“Mother Teresa, after a life dedicated to charity and humanitarian work, she is regarded as one of the most selfless people to have ever lived, and her efforts were recognized in 1979 when she won the Nobel Peace Prize. However, one of the most admirable things about Mother Teresa is that she wasn't doing it for the recognition – she spent nearly 30 years of her life helping others before anybody even knew who she was. She believed in doing whatever was possible to help, whether big or small, with her philosophy being; "If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one."

If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one.-  Mother Teresa”

Abby Ghafoor, London


“Women’s empowerment is to give women the tools to take control of their own lives.

So that they can have equal opportunities and make their own choices at home and in the workplace. Choice for a woman with substance Melinda Gates.”

Asha Khilnani, London


“In our lifetime, New Zealand’s Prime Minster, Jacinda Ardern should be considered an absolute exceptional Leader.  Her party won the highest percentage of the votes in more than five decades, Leading her country swiftly and effectively specially during the Pandemic. Arden has given a glimpse of a different kind of leadership, one that puts kindness at the top of her agenda.


A very powerful personality, loving wife and a caring mother. A great Female Leader of our time and she is the real WOMAN OF SUBSTANCE.”

Veena Malhotra, New Delhi

“My Woman of Substance is Amanda Gorman who spoke for the dreams of young people when she addressed the world at the US president’s inauguration.” 

Phil Hall, London


“My WOMAN OF SUBSTANCE is my beloved my mother. Although she left my world last month, she taught me so much through her expression of unconditional love, selflessness, devotion to giving to others without attachment, spirituality, resilience, never giving up when times are tough and always being kind and helpful to everyone. Kindness to others is what the world needs today and her life has inspired me to follow this path.”

Minal Popat, London



“My ideal is Rosa Park. Rosa Park   Stood up for her right against racism and for equality when she refused to give up her seat on the bus to a white person. “You must never be fearful about what you are doing when it is right “(Rosa Park) The U.S. congress called her "the first lady of civil rights" and "the mother of the freedom movement".

Anita Ramjas, NY



“My ideal is Anne Besent born 1897. She was a women’s activist, socialist, theosophist, educationist and philanthropist. she was an active supporter of Indian self rule, and one of the founders of the Benaras Hindu University. She was also part of the India Independence movement. What a woman!”

Neelam Khanna, New Delhi



“We aim at providing women with opportunities, so that they are economically secure and empowered.  CWF feels that education will be sign of this new found status of women in days to com.”

Chanana Welfare Foundation, New Delhi



“…. and I said to my body, softly, “I want to be your friend.”  It took a long breath. and replied “I have been waiting my whole life for this” by Nayyirah Waheed

Nina Nehra, New Delhi


“My woman of substance is ROZ DONNELLY who, for her entire life, has selflessly pursued a myriad of charitable endeavours, most importantly bringing many along the way in support.”

Peta Bistany - London


“Ordinary women aren’t really ordinary at all

I will take this opportunity to talk about myself-

Being a woman, I can proudly say how I have evolved as a strong and confident woman from a simple -normal girl.

From a messy girl to a structured wife, from a super lazy daughter to a super active lady taking care of the household and much more. There is no need to be Perfect to inspire others. Let others get inspired by how you deal with your imperfections!! “

Rima Bahl - London


“Something that’s really important to me is equality, and when I talk about equality I mean in terms of all walks of life, from gender, to disability to race, the list is endless. To me, we all deserve kindness and to feel valued and everyday I strive to ensure those around me feel this way. I’m proud to be a woman and to have achieved what I have done so far, despite the many physical and psychological barriers I may have faced. I would just like to say to all the young women out there on this day, remember what makes you unique, is your super power. Don’t be ashamed of your differences, be proud of who you are and strive to be the best version of yourself you can be. You’re strong enough to overcome the challenges life throws at you and don’t let anyone make you feel like you don’t matter. You matter, work hard so you can play hard and embrace every opportunity which comes your way.”

Louise Hunt, UK


“My woman of substance is Amrita Sher-Gil (1913 - 1941). Considered among the greatest avant-garde women artists practicing in the early twentieth century, she carved an indelible niche for herself in her tragically short 28 year lifetime. A pioneer in the history of modern Indian art, she has single handedly influenced generations of Indian artists.

Her freedom of mind and spirit was inspirational and revolutionary at a time when such privileges were not common for women. She broke stereotypes both as a woman and as an artist, blending Western and traditional art forms. Her art represented women in a unique way, ahead of her time and inspirational beyond her short lifespan.”

Shalini Bharadwaj – London

 

“I chose Melinda Gates who has addressed daunting barriers faced by women during Covid- 19, and who is focusing on how the world can emerge from this Pandemic more equal than the one we entered by putting women at the centre of recovery efforts and by rebuilding the economy in a more sustainable way that Recognises the informal infrastructure of care-giving as the backbone of economies. Her book, The Moment of Lift is truly inspiring.”

Ruhi Grover, London



“Stay positive, work hard and make it happen!”   Choice of woman: Maria Sklodowska Curie”

Danuta Handzel, London



“Women power…..I often wondered why God was so discriminatory about giving that muscle strength to a Man and denying women more physical power!!”

Many decades down many lanes travelled, I think I may have understood part of His bias..

A woman is really a natural powerhouse of all strength. and adding muscle to it would have

really upset the power balance.! between men and women!

I have watched the changes from a housebound grandmother to a more vocal and outgoing

Mother and to the Now Woman who is an amalgam of tradition, powered by a force. One that

propels her to the status of being a Woman whose tensility keeps stretching.

Once in my college days I was asked

'SO DO YOU BELIEVE IN WOMEN'S LIB TOO?’

I Looked at the pretty male face and asked 'From whom?’

That’s the crux.

Women adjust on all levels, ''thanks to an inherent intelligence.

That makes her child.. woman ..girl lover mother, entrepreneur all par excellence.

Women are empowered naturally with compassion, with vision, with a strength that befits all

three attributes of the Goddesses she worships.

She is Lakshmi Durga Saraswati my Hindu deities rolled into a delicate female gender.

She needs no encouragement to empower herself..

She only needs to love herself more and realise what a powerhouse of emotional and spiritual

energy she stores within her, and to not let any muscle or obstacle ever let her feel less…”

Veenu Nikam, Mumbai


“To all the women in the World Just Wake up and feel your inner strength. Women are known to have better intuition, patience, emotional focus, compassion and networking ability. The list of female strengths is endless.


Throughout history, the world has witnessed many great women of strength who managed to tap into their Everyday Power to leave an indelible mark on society. You can inspire many more to become strong woman themselves who approach life with confidence.

It is said You educate a woman you educate a generation.”

Rita Jetley, New Delhi


“To all my fellow women, to all the little women and to all the little girls who are at the threshold of this journey through life, I can only say that women must support and uplift other women. The world celebrates us on the 8th of March and we must celebrate each other every day.


Let's bring up strong girls who have the confidence to be equal to men in every way and strong boys who respect and understand and do not feel threatened by this equality.”

Ashi Burman, New Delhi


“I propose SUSAN B. ANTHONY. A woman who stood for compassion, respect, responsibility and honesty. Her words are echoed in today’s world “I declare to you that women must not depend upon the protection of man but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand.”

Leigh Punj, New Delhi



“To All of us everywhere in the world we are dynamic and powerful.  Wishing us all together a fantastic beautiful International Women’s day xxx”

Chila Burman, London

“The hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world”

As women, we have the unique, tremendous power to actually mould those who people the world; which in effect means, cod controlling the world.”

So, our first duty is to recognise this power &, our second duty is to utilise this immense power in the right way. For, we have in power, as mothers, to create either monsters or saints or anything in between.


We must raise our children with unwavering solid, good values, confidence & strength; strength in their own principles & strength to stand for & do what is right in all circumstances, no matter what.

Stand for goodness, have empathy & humility.


And so, to make the world a better place.”

Vandana Choudhrie Mehta, New Delhi


“Know who you are. Know what you want. Know what you deserve. And don’t settle for less.”

Chiraz - Alicante, London, Frankfurt



“My Inspiration as a child was always Mother Teresa of Calcutta (1910-1997), one of the greatest religious leaders of the twentieth century, courageously went against the trends of her time. her as a role model was the foundation of my upbringing ...


Mother Teresa was deeply aware of her mission: to be a mother to the very poor, to share their inner loneliness, their feeling of abandonment. Teresa realized that she was called to testify before the world about the immeasurable love of God for every person. "A beautiful death," she said, "is when people who lived like animals die like angels - with our love”.


Mother Teresa is an example of generosity (she had a dream and a mission), humility (her whole life was a service to humanity) and courage (she was faithful to her mission to the end).”

Anya Zakharova - United Kingdom/ Russia



“International Women’s Day is a celebration of the great women who have come before us, and who will continue to come after us. Let’s continue to empower women globally through education, support, and working collectively towards equality🙏Embody your divine feminine energy, women of the world when we all come together, beautiful things will happen.”

Karina Choudhrie, London



“Professor Sarah Gilbert led the Astrazenaca/ Oxford team that developed the AZcovid vaccine.

While the rest of the world was panicking or sitting at home watching Netflix she quietly worked with her team without seeking any publicity. She should be remembered as someone who helped save the world.”

Vinatha Reddy, London



“Feminism, discusses humanity and equality. It’s ideals point towards fairness and equilibrium in society.

Historically, Women have strived for respect, rights and acknowledgment. As we move towards better understanding of this issue, a lot remains unresolved.

WOMEN’S RIGHTS ARE HUMAN RIGHTS. It’s not a niche issue that society can dip in and out of as convenient. I strongly believe in the quote by Brigham Young “You educate a man; you educate a man. You educate a woman; you educate a generation.”

As an artist and a mother, my struggles have been exactly as of, many other working women of my generation. Being an artist and a woman has served as an act of rebellion in my career.

At times, immeasurable courage and resolve was required of me to maintain my status as professional. The best way to further the feminist cause is be a living example of it yourself.

I hope, more women unite on, pivotal platforms to support and galvanise the feminist cause.

I dedicate my struggle to great literary giant Virginia wolf. Her ground-breaking commentary on women right with books like ‘A room of ones own’ made substantial contribution towards the feminist conscious.

Let us raise our daughter as women determined to support other women. Ameen”

Faiza But, London

 

“My choice for a Person of Substance on Women’s Day March 8th, is Arundhati Roy.

My reason for choosing her is as follows:

  “Arundhati Roy’s guts and courage to speak out fearlessly on issues of discrimination and inequality in a hostile environment are worthy of admiration. One may or may not agree with her views, but her courage cannot be denied. Wish there were many more such individuals in today’s India, where dissent is frowned upon.“

Chandrika Baji-Pathak, India



“It’s hard to pinpoint one woman of substance. I am always surrounded by many. As a kid I was in awe with my mother, the way she dressed up and the way she looked after us and in my growing up years it was my mathematics teacher, she just knew how to make maths so easy to understand.  In my art field I recently stumbled upon Princess Fahrlinessa Zaid, she is termed by Tate modern as "one of the greatest female artists of the 20th century". And she has been a total inspiration especially when I’m hitting a low in producing something. And now exactly this moment it’s my grandmother who is 93 and lives a life full of grace even with all her limitations.” 

Radha Reddy, UK/ Malaysia



“How can I chose one? All women hold substance.I am woman. I am strong. I am love. I am comfort. I am strength. I am trust. I am here. I am warm. I am confident. I am independent. I am successful. I am healthy. I am authentic. I am vulnerable. I am smart. I’m real. I am genuine. I am capable. I am life. That’s who I want to be. I am woman. My women of substance are women around the world. Women I look up to, women I want to be and women who I inspire to be. In the words of Gloria Steinem, “some of us are becoming the men we wanted to marry.” Happy international women’s day!”

Kat Patterson, USA



“My woman of substance is fearless. She leads with her heart and inspires those around her. She empowers others with her energy and empathy. She is the best example of strength and grace.”

Misha Goleh, USA



“I propose SUSAN B. ANTHONY, A woman who stood for compassion, respect, responsibility and honesty. Her words are echoed in today’s world “I declare to you that women must not depend upon the protection of man but must be taught to protect herself, and there I take my stand.”

Kum Kum Talwar, New Delhi/ India



“This International Women's Day my message of women empowering women is for Samanta Bullock. Samanta continues to work hard to change society's perception of disability in the fashion industry and sport. Continue to empower and inspire women around the world!”

Serena MacLoad, Canada & UK



“My woman with substance knows that she is complete and doesn't need someone else to complete her.  She is not afraid to set goals that scare her and believes in the beauty of her dreams.”

Jaspal Dhani, London



“At a time when the world was less equal, Lady Ada King, Countess of Lovelace (Ava Lovelace) was admired by mathematicians and scientists for her incredible ‘mathematical powers and peculiar capability’ and was trusted to dedicate much of her life to creating the first computer programme. She was a highly intelligent woman with desires to succeed and didn’t let anything stop her from fulfilling her dreams. I think lots of young women today can relate to her, by letting nothing get in the way of their dreams and passions.”

Lucy Robinson, UK



“Williams has won a record of 13 Grand Slam singles titles on hard court. Williams holds the Open Era record for most titles won at the Australian Open and shares the Open Era record for most titles won at the US Open with Chris Evert. She also holds the records for the most women's singles matches won at majors with 362 matches and most singles majors won since turning 30-years-old .


She is an idol of perseverance. She overcame the racism and achieved a high level in tennis. She is a fantastic role model for women.”

Dr Azin Amiri, Cambridge



“My women of substance for this year is Kamala Harris. Her grace, intelligence and passion to overcome prejudice to become the first female and African American Vice President of the US is inspiring. Such a such a ground breaking achievement and will provide inspiration for all those girls who can now aspire to be president or vice president. She is gracious, humble but also fiercely  intelligent and not afraid to hold people to account. Although she is the first, she hopefully won’t be the last.”

Sara Massey, London


“Circa 1479 –  1458 BC there was the Pharaoh Hatshepsut, the monarch of ancient and powerful Egypt.  During the Tang Dynasty in Imperial China, Wu Zetian reigned between 618-907 CE as only female emperor of China in her own right and prior to that, as de facto ruler for 25 years. Then of course there is Elizabeth the 1st who reigned between 1558 –1603 during one of the most glorious periods of British history.  Despite the controversy of their reign as women and rulers of exceptional powerful empires, what is indisputable is that they were very effective in politics, administration and trade.


Although, there are no more empires in today's modern world and New Zealand is far from those great sprawling empires of the past, my woman of substance is  the 40 year old Jacinda  Ardern who is  Prime minister since 2017. She has lead her country successfully through the challenge of Covid-19, whilst navigating the political and economical minefield of East and West because of iNew Zealand's location in the Pacific. In that, she has done so much better than all the other politicians of “superpower” nations with much less impressive track record of handling Covid-19. I am glad that she is continuing the tradition of great leadership that has been demonstrated by the great women leaders of nations of the past.”

Angelina Chua, UK

“Women’s Empowerment is something I strongly believe in and have been inspired by several women of substance who have fought for women’s rights. We have come a long way from the time that women did not even have the right to vote. Emmeline Pankhurst was the leader of the Suffragetes in Britain, who was considered to be the most famous among them. Ruth Bader Ginsburg who in her tenure as Supreme Court Justice was widely regarded as a feminist and was the founder of the Council of the Civil Liberties Unions for Women’s rights in America. Gloria Steinem and Germaine Greer were  also spokeswomen for the feminist movement in the late 60’s. These are just a few who have been voices for our cause and there are so many others all over the world. As women we are growing stronger and there have been several women who have been elected presidents, prime ministers and Vice Presidents . The most recent being Kamala Harris. So we really have come a long way. But there’s still a long way to go to achieve a level playing field for future generations of women.”

Asha Framji, India



“Education, motivation, character, vision, tenacity and the opportunity to dream big--if you endow and empower one little girl with these ingredients, she will conquer the world....my mother and two remarkable women friends have helped mold me to achieve my full potential and still continue to push me to be the best I can ever be.”

Ferha Saghal, USA


“My Woman of Substance is

Audrey Hepburn

As Encyclopaedia Britannica states

“A woman renowned for her beauty style and sophistication ...charming innocence and tireless efforts to aid children in need."

Despite her fame beauty and success her quality of compassion and ability to reach out overrides. She was a humanitarian and spent the latter part of her life helping under privileged children and mothers through UNICEF.

Amongst her many quotes the one I remember most is

"FOR BEAUTIFUL EYES LOOK FOR THE GOOD IN OTHERS.

  FOR BEAUTIFUL LIPS SPEAK ONLY WORDS OF KINDNESS

  AND FOR POISE WALK WITH THE KNOWLEDGE THAT YOU ARE NEVER ALONE"

Ruxana Noon, UK



“I choose my dear friend Radhika Seth as a woman with substance. She inspires me with her ability to forge ahead and overcome obstacles without losing her ambition and determination to live life unapologetically on her own terms.”

Farzana Baduel, UK


“My woman of substance is Jamie Chadwick as she’s making progress in the very much male dominated area of motor sport.”

Rebecca Bedford, UK

 

“My message this International Women’s day goes to all of the mothers struggling with keeping their children safe, secure and happy during the global pandemic. As well as keeping their own careers afloat, the added pressure that mothers have come under this year is enormous.”

Abby Graham, London


“Aung San Suu Kyi is my Woman of Substance. Her fearless, resolute and relentless fight for her people simply amazes me.”

Corine Lee, London

“Arundhati Katju, along with Menaka Guruswamy won a historic 2018 Indian Supreme Court case decriminalizing homosexuality, declaring Section 377 unconstitutional and ending the 155-year-old colonial law. Katju, an Indian lawyer, practiced law for 11 years before receiving an LLM in 2017 from Columbia University, where she was a Human Rights Fellow and a James Kent Scholar.


She represents qualities of Women of Substance: strong empathetic individuals, utilising her stellar education that broadened her own minds not just to make their own mark, but making impact in making a better world. Arundhati Katju for me is the voice and representation of women who are often marginalised and young girls who can look up to her as role model.”

Tina Saighal, New Delhi


“A successful woman is the one who can build a firm foundation with the bricks thrown at her” (author unknown) AND “No one can make you feel inferior without your consent “ (Eleanor Roosevelt)


I read these two quotes as a student. They have greatly inspired me. So here’s to us women. May we continue to live life with strength, wisdom and laughter.”

Manju Amar, New Delhi


“My pick of a Woman of Substance, my hero, is my grandmother, Roop Kaul. She was born in 1914 in Bahraich, a provincial town in Eastern Uttar Pradesh, into a family of lawyers. She was home schooled, became proficient in English, Hindi, Urdu and Farsi and privately took the Matriculation examination. She was married at age 15, to my grandfather, the son of the Auditor General of the Eastern Railways, a person of immense prestige in Calcutta with a title of Rai Bahadur. His four sons, my grandfather included, were rich and spoilt – fond of gambling and the races and being gentlemen at large. By the time my grandmother was nineteen, she had 3 sons, who were being brought up in a joint family, where nobody worked seriously, except my great grandfather.


With immense grit and determination, she set out on a well thought out, focused plan to salvage the situation. She first passed her B.A. examination privately, taught herself to speak, read and write Bengali, completed her teachers training and started teaching in a school of which she eventually became the Principal.


Despite belonging to a wealthy family, it was imperative for her to work to be able to finance the education of her 3 sons in boarding school in Allahabad and later at Allahabad University. Though my grandfather also worked with the Indian Railways, he was not careful with his money. An immensely proud woman, she never asked her wealthy father for financial help, nor depended on her husband for the educational needs of her sons.


My grandmother was determined to distance her sons from their uncles and cousins. It wasn’t easy. She led by example, and inculcated in her three sons, a solid work ethic, the value of honesty and hard work and a never-say- die spirit.


Little wonder that they rode on her slender shoulders and reached the very pinnacle of their chosen careers.


My father rose to the top of the Indian Bureaucracy, and served as Commerce Secretary, Defence Secretary, Finance Secretary and Cabinet Secretary, Government of India. He finally retired as the Indian Ambassador to the United States. My second uncle joined the board of Union Carbide India Limited. The youngest of the three, became Air Chief Marshal of the Indian Air Force and is a highly decorated officer, being the recipient of the second highest gallantry award – the Mahavir Chakra and the PVSM.


In her old age, she lived with my parents but continued to give back to society by doing social work with a government agency dealing with children. She was deeply spiritual and was inducted into the order of the Rama Krishna Mission in Belur Math, Calcutta.

For me, her granddaughter, she was a deeply inspiring figure.

The lessons I learnt from her are what she called the 3 mantras of her life.

1. To always have clear goals, with the grit and determination to achieve them.

2. To always have a positive attitude and to adapt to changing times.

3. To always be grounded in spirituality, as that gives you the inner strength to conquer all odds.

The fortunate position that I am in today, is thanks to the power of that extraordinary woman.”

Vandana Haksar, New Delhi


“Here's to the strong women of the world. I like the quote by Geena Dunne under the pseudonym G.D. Anderson "Feminism isn't about making women stronger, women are already strong, it's about changing the way the world perceives that strength”. As well as being a feminist writer Geena is the founder of an Australian charity, The Cova Project, which helps women around the world gain access to menstrual products. I think she can be admired for not just talking the talk.”

Alexandra Adam, London


“Michelle Obama is one of the women I admire the most. She came from a modest background but went to Princeton and law school. She educated herself and after marrying Barack Obama she became the First Lady of the United States. She conducted herself with dignity and poise in a very difficult and demanding position. To be the first black lady in the White House was amazing. I love her famous quote “when they go low we go High!!!


She has proven that a woman can achieve anything if she is determined and applies her mind. Women can achieve great heights so long as they are determined. She has shown the way forward for women empowerment and maybe one day she could even be the first black lady president!” 

Rajni seth – London


"Inspiring woman of the decade, Ms Jacinda Arden in my view - a blend of authentic leadership, charisma and true to her people. Tested by adversities but stood strong in the face of the pandemic and keeps up the good work to inspire us all around the world. Someone to aspire to and look up to."

Bhama Pudaruth, London

On March 8th let us celebrate and remember all the women that have sacrificed so much to provide a better future for women today. And let us not forget that for many, such as the kidnapped girls in Nigeria, the struggle continues today. Deborah Ross, London

“To all the women, never doubt that you are valuable and powerful, and deserving of every chance and opportunity in the world to pursue and achieve your own dreams. Feminism isn't about making women stronger. Women are already strong, it's about changing the way the world perceives that strength.”

Pooja Malhotra, USA

 

"Today I want to celebrate every woman and girl child on the planet.  To give us hope comfort love ambition courage and Strength. The woman of substance for me is kamala Harris who has broken barriers crossed a landmark to achieve what woman in other countries have already done, high political office and hopefully will encourage others to do the same in her country and around the world.

Also I want to remember my mother Doctor Param Bhinder who in her own way for her generation of women was well ahead of her time she did a Masters in public health on a scholarship in 1961 at  Berkeley university in California and then worked for the ministry of health in India and after for the world health organization  specialising in women and child health  for thirty years. 

Kirat Young, France


"Michelle Obama has long been an inspiration - of course for all of the firsts, the wisdom and the grace but also for reminding us all that in pursuit of greatness, an authentic way to serve and a greater understanding of the world around us, we must ensure that we forever keep on ‘becoming’."  

Karen Cummings-Palmer, London


“My women of substance are Arianna Huffington and off course Anita Choudhrie”

Cecile Reinaud, UK



“My woman of substance is my mum, Parkash Kaur Dollay. She is and has always given the most selfless and unconditional love a woman could give to her children. She gave up her teaching career when she moved from the Punjab to London to look after her three children. She taught us the value of education and hard work as way to be independent from any man. She’s supported me all the way from my GCSE days though to dental school and post graduate exams. I’ll never forget the day she held my first baby so I could sit my post graduate exams and nurse him in between vivas. As she slows down now, her love is still pure. I wish I will be half the mother and a woman of substance to my boys that she has always been to me.“

Dr Nina Dollay


“Let us celebrate international women's Day on march 8th by recognising the amazing bravery of Malala, her fight for girls' rights to education and taking on the tyranny of the Taliban and their like. "If one man can destroy everything, why can't one girl change it?"

Adrienne and Rosanna Wilson, UK



“In March 8th let us celebrate successes of women who have overcome adversity and unite to pressurise governments who still oppress women. Let us not forget the girls who were kidnapped in Nigeria and those that are held against their will in forced marriages.

Amanda Moss, UK



"Rather than the celebration of my gender or title, International Women's Day is to remember the efforts of the powerful and diligent women in all generations that gave me the freedom I have today. What I learned from my mother is that we have to fight everyday. We have to think and we have to educate ourselves and even more importantly, we have to feel, support and understand each other. As a woman in technical sciences, where masculinity of the system is almost impenetrable, I learned to use my voice as loud as possible on a daily basis to reflect the flawed picture directly back to the management. From south to north and from east to west, we have a long way to go for a more equal world but my mother proved me that nothing is impossible and no matter how hard, we have to wake up everyday to make a difference."

Dr Saghar Motarjemi



My Woman of Substance is Ruth Bader Ginsburg. She  was a powerful example of a woman who stood for what she believed in and wasn’t afraid to fight to uphold those beliefs. She achieved so much by a simple motto “Fight for the things that you care about. But do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”

Radhika Seth, London


“For far too long decisions affecting the advancement of women is taken by men. This has to stop. It is time for women to be at the forefront of all decision making process. This will go someway in achieving equality of opportunity for all. It is time we achieve this reciprocity.

I nominate all women refugees across the world who have suffered so much.”

Lord Navnit Dholakia, UK



“I think of all the wonderful, strong and inspiring women out there who are unique in their own beautiful way. Thank you for encouraging me on my journey. I hope to inspire other women as much as they have inspired me. Together we can do great things!”

Anna Acerbi, London


“As Woman International Day is approaching in this extraordinary existential time we are living in, my thoughts unravel to all us Women as messengers or better say vehicle for love.

My dedication goes for all those courageous & inspiring new Mothers who have embodied in this pandemic the Will for Life in the shape of our collective revelation for tomorrow, a tomorrow with no name but with the ancient certainty that we heard our Mothers hearts from inside ♥️ That shall remain with us forever.”

Paola Titiksha Terzolo, London


“All women have substance.  We lead multi-facted, complex lives; we are the keepers of the most precious elements of life and the ones who most often nurture growth and development - allowing members of our families, communities and colleagues to spread their wings and soar.  "I also..." are words frequently used when describing what we do - whether those be additional roles in the workplace, a volunteering commitment, meeting a family or community need or a focussed drive towards excellence in a particular field.  We are trusted with feelings of hope and despair, aspirations, desires, secrets, faith and have a shared determination to challenge, improve, change and make a difference - all woven into our every day substance and being - wherever we are in the world.  Let us celebrate all those things and continue support those around us - with light, optimism and tenacity.”

Jenny Smith, St Albans


"There is no better show of unity and message of positivity than women empowering and supporting other women, the power lies in collective action and in community, as women connecting and uplifting each other benefits not just womanhood as a whole but all of mankind universally".

Ratika Puri Kapur, UK


"Where does one begin to talk about empowering women!? By looking into the lives of women who fought for women’s rights and achieved unimaginable goals.... a firebrand who in her 80s became a legal, cultural and feminist icon ...Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.... Supreme Court justice of the United States. She was the architect of the legal crusade for women’s rights in the 1970s.... after she was refused a place by all the law firms in spite of graduating at the top of her law school class. This determination to end this discrimination against women no doubt paved the way for women like Kamala Harris to become the first female Vice President of the United States. Sadly there are still  many regions all over the world where women are struggling to exercise basic humanitarian rights.....where injustice to women is taken as a norm of life...but this must end. United ... women could win this overpowering crusade...fighting and helping other women to achieve their goals and secure a respectful place in society. That day hopefully will come soon as long as Governments also play an active role in changing legislation in favour of women become the champions of abused and distressed women all over the world!!!"

Nazli Jafferjee, London

“We are Goddesses... sources of light!

Let us embrace, foster and share our strong yet tender, fearless yet vulnerable, gentle yet fierce magic with the world!”

Kary, London


“There are many amazing women in the world who are Women with Substance, but I don’t want to look far in time and far in distance.  My Mother is my Woman with Substance.  With her force of willpower, unconditional love and determination, going through hardship of war and challenging circumstances, my parents immigrated across the world for a better life for their family.  She is kind, humble, wise, supportive, fair, modern thinking and has thought us many valuable lessons in life to follow.”

Nasim Malhotra, London



‘If women can be railroad workers in Russia, why can’t they fly in space?’ - once said Valentina.

In 1963, Valentina, a former textile worker from the Soviet Union became the first woman in space, orbiting the earth forty-eight times. She put the previous four American astronauts – all male – to shame with their combined total of thirty-six. Not only that, she logged more flight time than the total combined times of every American astronaut who had flown before her. She was only 26 years old. Right on, sister"

Tati Orlova, Russia          

 

“The woman who inspired me the most was my mother as she was an open minded, resilient woman who believed that Education is key to emancipation of society. She was a woman who was way ahead of her peers.”

Poonam Patnaik, London


“I have been very fortunate to come across inspiring women all throughout my life from teachers to friends and mentors. Whenever I’m down I think of all the amazing women artists who overcame extreme adversity, continued their resistance and showed great resilience. For the 108th International Women’s Day, I nominate the Brazilian artist Anna Maria Maiolino who continued in the face of political hardship and extreme poverty”.

 Adia Wahid, London



“There is always light. If only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we’re brave enough to be it.”- Amanda Gorman. These beautiful words spoken by this young poet should be a reminder to all of us women to believe in ourselves, lift each other up and shine a light even in the darkest of times. Bravery is not commonly associated with being a female attribute; but on this International Women’s Day I hope for all women to be brave enough to truly be themselves.”

Navi Badyal, London



“I dedicate the 108th International Women’s Day to my mother as the being most inspirational person in my life. Though, not famous in the conventional sense, she was unique in her very own way. She became a surrogate mother to her eight younger siblings at the tender age of 21, when both my grandparents passed away and was essentially looking after 11 children ranging from new born to 17 yrs of age whilst also being a wife and a daughter in law.

She taught me to be respectful, kind, stoic and smile in the face of adversity.

Despite a multitude of responsibilities, she always found time to read and expand her knowledge of the world events and could hold an audience with great aplomb. Much of what I am today is my mother’s gift to me in giving me the values that I hold dear and the authenticity with which I conduct my life. As I write this message, I hope that there may be more mothers like mine, who may not be celebrities but shape the lives of all those that they touch.”

Neelu Kaul, Mumbai


“My Woman with Substance is a woman with Positive influence, beautiful soul and a pillar of strength.”

Sh. K., UK

                                     


“To my mom, my anchor, my friend, my source of strength with her unconditional love.”

D. Hashemi, Sweden


"Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, First Lady of Ghana is a passionate advocate

for the well-being of Ghanaian women and children in the areas of education, health, and women’s economic empowerment.


She has contributed immensely to maternal and child health in Ghana, by building an ultra-modern Mother and Baby and Paediatric Intensive Unit and a Paediatric Intensive Care, Neonatal Intensive Care and High Dependency Units, at Ghana’s two premier teaching hospitals.

Her Foundation executes Because I want to be, to keep girls in school and train drop-outs. Her women’s economic empowerment initiative, Terema, provides skills training and business assistance to women in Ghana.

She is also a strong advocate for women’s rights, equality and gender parity and organizes the First Lady’s International Women’s Day Programme with a week long line – up of activities geared at ensuring gender parity.  


“I wasn’t blessed with waking up and knowing what my purpose in life is. But I am blessed with the will to continue to discover it. Try this, try that. Try try try until something sticks!”

Claudia, Canada



 “always be true to yourself, listen to your heart and intuition, that’s where all the real answers are” 

Johanna, London



“My woman with substance is Rachael Burford: former England player, captain of Harlequins and World Cup winner. When I started the website ‘4thelove of sport’, it was to promote sportswomen, women in sport and to inspire women and girls to take an interest, hopefully take part in sport. Rachael is not only an inspirational leader on the pitch but also off the pitch with the Girls Rugby Club which (in normal times) holds rugby camps for girls across the country. At the moment they are doing online sessions. She also co-hosts the Women's Rugby Pod with commentator Johnnie Hammond. I jokingly told her once that she is my hero and we laughed but she actually is. I was lucky enough to go along to one of the rugby camps when a niece of mine attended - I have never before seen so many happy smiling girls, who were clearly encouraged and inspired by the day. It was wonderful.”

Jennie Powell, UK


“Women are underrepresented in so many areas of life from boards to political positions and management roles yet are the backbone and glue holding families, children and homes together particularly in poorer communities. Time to change this 🙏🏽

Camille Wekesa Nanyuki, Kenya

“Far more important than looks, love your intuition, love your wisdom, love your morals – love yourself. To be a woman is a beautiful, beautiful thing. And most importantly, it is something to be proud of, all you have to remind yourself is life is tough, but so are you.”

T. Malhotra, San Francisco

 

"She is gracious, strong, smiles when distressed, fighter, only knows to love, adorable, perfectionist, irreplaceable and many more. We call her mother. My strength and my idol is my mother. Cheers to all ladies who plays vital role in shaping the future of the world with their selfless act. Happy Women’s Day !!"

Veena Nair, Mauritius, India



"Even in the face of adversity, women’s voices have continued to shape business and help societies thrive. Today more than ever, we all need to join in support of each other, because the more voices we bring into decision-making conversations, the faster we can close the gender gap."

Sabrina, London



“I live and work on my terms” is a good starting point for every woman to negotiate with her life.

I have never ending dreams and unstoppable desire to make them come alive. That intense wish to excel keeps me plotting to create and celebrate my womanhood."

Mira Kaushik OBE



"Every woman’s place should be in the what?

Every woman’s place should be exactly where she wants her place to be. Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a woman of substance said: “Women belong in all places where decisions are made, it shouldn’t be that women are the exception“. When women support each other then incredible things can happen #strongertogether"

Neeta Naidoo, UK


“Be the true Woman to Fix another woman’s crown and be hard to break and impossible to forget.”

Ayesha Chopra, Dubai


“The world would be a colourless and insipid place without us! Every single woman I know has her own unparalleled strengths. Their multifaceted personalities and abilities are inspiring. I have looked up to, admired and tried to emulate so many. And they never cease to amaze me, whichever generation they may belong to. My only wish is for women to support and encourage each other in moving forward, growing and flourishing and continue to keep the world looking vibrant.”

Ratika, Chennai



“For all the women in the world, my message is - wear your strength as beauty. We are born with the innate strength of the universe to grow upwards and onwards. Embrace this power to nestle everyone around and don't shy away from channelling your voice against the wrongs. We are the change, and it begins with one step at a time.”

Jayshree Burman, New Delhi/ India


“My admiration goes to Women in Paralympics, who in spite of various challenges, inspire many of us and the next generation of Female Paralympic Athletes. They are my role model, removing many barriers, generating HOPE, INSPIRATION, DETERMINATION and SKILL to overcome Barriers. Let’s raise World awareness for these amazing Women, who in spite of uncertain times of Covid 19, have navigated the obstacles and are preparing their PATH TO TOKYO 2021.

Lady Katrin Hoare, UK



“Today more than ever let’s stand tall, be loud, bold, proud about our achievements and let’s broadcast our talents and abilities. Let’s be confident, let’s follow our intuition and let’s pad ourselves on the back when we are satisfied with what we have done. Let’s also pad ourselves on the back when we have chosen to take care of ourselves, or to just have fun and take a leisure break. We must stand together now more than ever and be our own cheerleaders.”

Wendy, London


“Women are inherently sensitive, intuitive and compassionate by nature. One such lady is Dr. Rani Bang. In her simple cotton sarees and a bindi on her forehead, she has sacrificed all the glory and fame of becoming a renowned doctor in a city to shifting to rural India so that she can serve the poorest of the poor.

Loosing an infant patient due to lack of medical facilities haunted Dr. Rani Bang for many years thereafter. This incident was to change her life. She realized that healthcare was not always about facilities or the medicines, but also to make it sensitively accessible.

Since then Rani and her husband have dedicated their lives to social and educational upliftment of areas in the tribal district of Gadcaharoli, Maharashtra. Rani said that you can earn the most prestigious accolades and awards, but true satisfaction can only come from selfless women doing work for the larger good.“

Radhika Sheth, Mumbai


“Ruth Bader Ginsburg though small in stature was a giant in the US court system.  Throughout her life she worked tirelessly to tear down barriers to equality for men and women.  Her brilliant writings, her endurance and her devotion to fighting discrimination inspired me. She has served as a role model for myself and for so many other women.”

Dr Donna Mancini, NYC,USA


“I have always found Marie Curie to be personally inspirational as she strove to accomplish remarkable discoveries in a scientific community which had set numerous roadblocks in her path. Despite the limitations which were attempted to be placed upon her, her brilliance was recognized with a Nobel prize in her lifetime.”

Dr Nancy Wolfin, NYC, USA


“So there’s probably two wonder women I would love to champion both are in the media industry but both at different stages of their career. The first is Sophie Morgan because she’s a really great role model for girls and women wanting to get into broadcasting because of how many glass ceilings she’s already smashed. When I saw her on TV as one of the lead presenters of Channel 4’s Rio Paralympics coverage actually doing what I was dreaming about doing as a journalism student it showed me there was a place in the media and sports reporting world for somebody who looked like me and saw the world from a wheelchair users point of view. The second is an up and coming journalist who started her career around the same time as me. She’s called Lydia Wilkins and she’s doing great things on her Instagram and her own blog Mademoiselle Women to raise awareness about life as an neurodiverse woman, I think she’s even writing a cookbook now - so go follow both of them please they are doing great things”

Gemma-Louise Stevenson, UK


“I would say a female athlete inspired me into sport and I wouldn’t be in this position if she hadn’t of inspired me 😊”

Lottie McGuinness, UK



“My woman of substance is Ellen Pompeo. As an established actress, she has used her platform to advocate for many important topics particularly, racial justice and feminism. Attending protests and speaking out on social media have allowed her to spread awareness as well as educate people on the impropriety that exists in our society. Recently, her support for the Black Lives Matter movement, for example taking a knee and discussing it in interviews, has encourage many of her followers to do the same and has inspired many. Her role as a feminist and activist continues and she remains a powerful and inspirational woman.”

Annika M., London


“My Woman of Substance is my dearest friend Shamilka. She has faced the hardest of obstacles with great courage and determination, and has never let her strength of character falter. She also shows a great sense of loyalty to those who are nearest and dearest to her, but also gives charity and shows kindness to anyone that needs it. She is a true inspiration to me, and someone I am proud to call my friend......”

Aina Suterwalla, London



"I am indelibly inspired and continue to be inspired by all the Disabled women who have come before me. Those who have gone unrecognized in their achievements; those who have significantly altered our history with their powerful efforts and who have created the inclusionary frameworks so that we benefit from their resilient work. I am inspired to continue their legacies by creating more impactful leadership opportunities for and with Disabled women and girls by always centering our expertise and the lived experience of disability."

Karin Korb, USA



"We are working so that the world can become more aware. In order to have this path, we need to open our eyes to diversity, to understand that we are part of these differences and that, precisely because of this, it is natural. Diversity is not about dividing into groups: it is a fact. And the fact, applied to reality, is what we call inclusion."

Samanta Bullock, Brazil/UK


“My woman of substance is Indira Nooyi. Moving to the US as a student from a humble upbringing, she was recognised by Forbes, as one of the 100 most powerful women, by simple grit and determination, She beat all the social, cultural and gender challenges that she came across in her rise to be the CEO of one of the most well known snack empires, PepsiCo. Being an immigrant myself, I feel that she has and will be an inspiration to me and many others like me for a long time.”

Swetha Reddy, UK/India



“I salute all women for everything we do and, in all circumstances, From Boudicca to Michelle Obama all recognised for different reasons. Celebrate women on this day and everyday.”

Laura, Buckinghamshire



“As a female athlete during the Covid pandemic I think it is especially important to shout about international women’s day this year. So many women have gone before us and positively shaped the sporting landscape and we must continue to do the same in this era to make sure that women’s sport comes back stronger after the pandemic”

Lucy Shuker, UK


“I would like to celebrate her this woman's day - Usha Soman, 81 year old woman, who is giving all the fitness enthusiast a run for their money.  She is a retired professor of biochemistry and started trekking at the age of 60 to follow her passion. She has been in the news for various landmarks like running marathons, walkathon, planking, push ups and what not. She does this all wearing sarees - her choice of comfortable dressing, which is also breaking barriers of orthodox mindset around traditional clothing.  Recently, she climbed up to the base camp of Mount Everest, and Mount Kilimanjaro. She makes the saying actually true that "age is just a number". Usha Soman is an inspiration for all women and men, especially in their so called "2nd innings" of life, to not hesitate or be afraid of taking up something new.”

Nivedita Mital, New Delhi


"Ann Wild OBE, retired British Wheelchair Basketball Player, is a powerhouse on court but with a heart of gold, she has time for everybody and has helped to break down barriers for females in wheelchair basketball,

Maggie Alphonsi MBE, is also my hero for rugby, she’s an incredible athlete who has worked incredibly hard to break down barriers for females in sport and after sports, in her presenting career.

Both women are incredibly inspiring athletes but also hero’s for women in sport, not only breaking barriers and stereotypes, but leave the door open for women in the future too!"

Freya Levi, UK

“Women are tearing down the curtain and taking their place outside the home, in the world, with the power to make real change. Often we’re in a minority in the domains of money and influence and power, shouting to be heard in a din of male voices, underfunded, undervalued, underestimated. When we’re given the chance, when we have a real and equal opportunity to compete, we so often win and win again. Watch out world - don’t get in our way!”

Ayesha Vardags, London

“Women hold the key to change the world! This women’s day let’s celebrate this facet of women’s personality. Let’s raise our daughters with the belief that they can own their life and their world and bring about a much needed positive change. Let us also teach our boys to value the women around them and rejoice in their success and achievements. Let’s together empower the world by empowering the women!”

Shiba Singh, New Delhi



“The women in the ‘developed world’ should make a pledge to support women in the ‘developing’ world with free schooling so that they develop into independent women who have a voice.”

Sian, Birmingham

yes, YOU CAN HAVE BOTH!!

Society and its age old structures create hurdles in your pursuit for happiness with family and success in career.

A woman trying to excel at both is often told its not possible to have it all.

Not true! Seek support from your family and colleagues. It’s not a favour but their duty to help you succeed.

So don’t give up! Make it happen - make sure you get the support you need.

Own your success - its yours!

Aparna Kala, New Delhi