The theme for International Women’s Day in 2023 is #EmbraceEquity.


Not to be confused with equality, equity recognises that each person has different circumstances and allocates the exact resources and opportunities needed to reach an equal outcome.


Recently there has been a rising in awareness of the ‘mental load’ often carried by women to recognise and celebrate events such as IWD (on top of their existing workload).  Last year I spoke of the disproportionate amount of the mental load on both emotional labour at work and at home. I have always celebrated IWD its been a pivotal part of my narrative to celebrate womens achievements and increase visibility.


However, IWD as a time for cupcakes and celebration is far from its revolutionary roots or any meaningful discussion that is promoted through trends such as the commercialisation of IWD. Whilst it does allow for a narrow set of problems to be addressed such as the gender pay gap and the lack of female representation in decision making. IWD in its current form can negate the discussion of the nature of power under patriarchy and how the relationship of the power dynamic might genuinely be transformed. In our environment we have made some fantastic steps this past year, however in our work each day we see the most pervasive forms of inequity which is why this year we are bucking the trend.


We often talk about what we stand for, what and who we show up for – So rather than asking people to ‘organise a morning tea’ or take out and ad in the local paper, this year we donated $150 per site (Mildura, Bendigo, Geelong, Preston, Swan Hill, Echuca/Kyabram) to a charity which focuses on supporting and building better lives for women.


“The Story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist, nor to any organisation, but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights” – Gloria Steinem 



About the author
Trudi Ray
CEO, Haven Home Safe
Bio:Trudi’s extensive knowledge of the housing and homelessness sector, coupled with her deep regional connections and commitment to social justice drives Haven Home Safe’s successful delivery of homeless support services and housing.

Trudi Ray


15 March 2023

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