BE BOLD FOR CHANGE. That’s the motto for this year’s International Women’s Day and we’ve figured out five beautiful ways to help women, around the world and close to home, any day and every day.
1. Donate Your Used Clothes & Fund a Girl’s Education
Simultaneously get rid of some of your winter clothing in time for spring cleaning and be a badass feminist by standing #withMalala. The Malala Fund has teamed up with Schoola to create a user-friendly donation process, which let’s be honest, often hampers charitable giving. Simply request a pre-paid (!) shipping label, pack a box with your clothes for the organization to sell, and be assured that 40% of the money raised from your donation will be given directly to facilitate girls’ long-term education in Pakistan, Nigeria, Kenya, and more recently, for Syrian refugees. You can shop their online collection and share the sale link with friends to help fund raise as well!
2. Make a Kiva micro-loan.
As they say, ‘Dreams are universal; opportunity is not.’ Making a micro-loan is one of the easiest ways to leverage the power of your capital, which is immense comparative to international situations. A well established organization with a 4-star rating on Charity Navigator, Kiva operates in 82 countries and has already helped 1.6 million individuals. You can choose to give a loan as little as $25, choose which woman you’d like to help specifically or what causes to support, like fulfilling tuition fees. Kiva lenders reportedly raise an average of $2.5 million in loans each week, creating a unique, renewable pool of funds that is reshaping access to financial services around the world. The site’s research indicates that on average, women reinvest 80% of their income in the well-being of their children, giving you moral fortitude in knowing you are directly affecting multiple generations and communities, at the point at which values are instilled.
3. Wear Your Heart on Your Sleeve..and Chest
The #WaronWomen has now been dubbed The Resistance and thus, you have all types of justifications to go out and buy some new wear and swag to support the cause. Check out this: ‘Future is Female’ shirt from OtherWild and this ‘Pussy Grabs Back’ shirt from Female Collective that supports RAINN, the nation’s largest anti-sexual violence organization.
Be sure to also check out The Outrage, a new feminist clothing brand that sold apparel to support transportation for those in need to the Women’s March in D.C. As part of their business practice, they still pass on 15% of their proceeds to organizations supporting women’s rights. Bold, unique typography and modern design makes each item a prize statement piece.
4. Organize a tampon drive!
Taking a note from some of our Fierce Women like Nadya Okamoto, founder of Camions of Care and Chelsea VonChaz of #HappyPeriod, you can organize a local tampon drive and collect menstrual hygiene products for women in need. Over 40 million women in the United States live under the poverty line making tampons and pads prohibitively expensive, especially for homeless women and young teens, since they cannot be bought with food stamps. While almost 300,000 women are homeless, meaning they don’t have the resources to adequately clean or take care of themselves, shelters report having negligible supplies for women as they are less commonly donated and not highly prioritized for funding use.
5. Support Women’s Healthcare
Tell congress that women are important; birth control and access to medical care are on the chopping block. You can sign a petition, call your representatives to let them know your opinion, make signs and art that spread your message to the world on social media, or donate to an organization whose work you support; use this Charity Navigator resource to guide your search of whom to donate to.
Regardless of your opinion on abortion access, there’s no doubt that Planned Parenthood as an organization protects women’s health and provides services to those in need, often without insurance. They once saved my life and there are countless stories out there of women who depended on them in their most dire moments.
How are you supporting women this month? Share your stories of compassion, charity, and contribution with us and let us know how you make International Women’s Day a day of impact.