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With Women’s History month and International Women’s Day falling in March, we felt strongly that our first quarter should be centred around Gender Equality.

We all know the stats - a lack of women in leadership positions (20% of board positions are held by women), a lack of funding awarded to female entrepreneurs (according to the FT all female founded teams got less than 1p in every £1 of UK VC investment in 2019), the list goes on... it’s all very disheartening! When researching the latest on gender equality, much of the media comments praise the latest figures because they are significant increases from recent years… hmmm, it’s still pretty dire in our opinion.

Much of the inequality experienced in the Western World is centred around economic issues. The reality is much more grim for other parts of the world. With women and girls having to face realities such as child marriage, female genital mutilation (FGM) and sex trafficking. Unicef reports that 1 in 5 young women are married as children. We dream of a world where a little girl faces the same opportunities and rights as a little boy born in any part of the world, why should it be any different?

For this reason, we have chosen Equality Now as one of our charity partners this year as well as our focus charity for Q1. Interestingly, they concentrate their work around legal systems:

A country’s laws set the tone for how it treats its people, and how its people treat each other. When women and girls have fewer rights than men and boys, violence and discrimination are legitimised and ignored.’

In many countries, laws are not set to benefit genders equally. By changing the law and criminalising things that should be punishable, they believe this sets the tone for the behaviour and culture of a country which could, in turn, transform many lives by giving women and girls a fair chance at justice. They have a team of expert lawyers and campaigners working hard to build a world where women and girls receive equal legal representation and treatment. 

Examples of their work are using the law to make things like FGM and child marriage illegal and punishable. Imagine living in a country where these rights are taken away from you or where you or a friend is assaulted or exploited but it’s not seen as a ‘crime’ by your local justice system. It’s incomprehensible to many of us to imagine that reality but it is in fact a reality for many women and girls in the world.

We are proud to be supporting Equality Now’s work towards bringing justice to victims subject to these horrific acts.

You can find out more about Equality Now and the work they do on their website here...

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