Happy International Women’s Day!
The awareness day falls on March 8 every year and aims to celebrate women and girls.
So to mark the occasion, we’ve rounded up 100 inspirational ladies that have been making a positive mark on the world.
There are dozens of brilliant role models in the line-up – including current Miss England winner Dr Bhasha Mukherjee.
Not only did she become the the longest-serving winner of the prestigious pageant competition, she’s also been working on the coronavirus frontline.
Last April, she answered the government’s call for junior doctors to return to help the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.
Other women who we’re honouring this International Women’s Day include lockdown hero Jackie Weaver, who famously got the nation laughing when she took control of a parish council meeting.
She was branded a national treasure after the Zoom call went viral – and musical legend Andrew Lloyd Webber even wrote a song about her!
We’d also like to show our support for Anna Saccone Joly who bravely opened up about her miscarriage in January.
Meanwhile, inspirational women like body confidence advocates Katie Parrott and Nelly London have also made our top 100 list.
IWD was originally called International Working Women’s Day and was first celebrated on February 28, 1909 in New York City.
It was a remembrance of a 1908 strike when 15,000 workers of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union marched to demand political and social rights.
The IWD as we know it now was first held in 1914 on March 8.
The day was chosen because it was a Sunday, a day many women would have free which meant they could participate in the marches.
According to the United Nations (UN), it’s, “a day when women are recognised for their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political.
“It is an occasion for looking back on past struggles and accomplishments, and more importantly, for looking ahead to the untapped potential and opportunities that await future generations of women.”
There has been a theme assigned to each IWD day by the UN since 1996.
This year’s theme is #ChooseToChallenge, which encourages people to create an inclusive world.
The IWD website explains: “A challenged world is an alert world.
“Individually, we’re all responsible for our own thoughts and actions – all day, every day.
“We can all choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality.
“We can all choose to seek out and celebrate women’s achievements.
“Collectively, we can all help create an inclusive world.”