In celebration of International Women’s Day 2014, our President and CEO Mary Ellen Iskenderian was featured on Huffington Post’s ImpactX page reflecting on ‘invisible’ women who need access to finance. Excerpt:
Today we celebrate International Women’s Day. Admittedly, this day is not as well-known or as loudly celebrated as many of our commercial American holidays. But International Women’s Day was actually founded by a group of visionary women who wanted to make noise. In the early 1900s, women’s oppression and inequality spurred women around the world to become more vocal and active in campaigning for change. The founders of International Women’s Day came together to draw global attention to the quest for women’s equality. They spoke out for the right to vote, work, and earn an equal wage, no longer accepting women’s invisible position in society.
International Women’s Day provides an opportunity to celebrate our shared experience as women. As women today, in some way or another, we are all caregivers, we are peacekeepers, we are leaders, we are innovators, we are providers. As I reflect on these commonalities, however, I cannot help but reflect on the vast disparity in the resources available to women to fulfill these responsibilities. As a working woman in New York City, I am fortunate to have financial resources, and more importantly, access to the tools to manage those resources. But what about the woman farmer in rural Tanzania who is miles from the closest bank and cannot take out a loan or open a savings account without her husband’s signature? And she is, by no means, alone — over 1 billion women around the world don’t have access to these basic financial tools.
Link: “On International Women’s Day, ‘Invisible’ Women Need Financial Access”