Celebrating Women Who Move America Forward

Seonseray Oates, YW Boston intern

As we end February’s celebration of African-American achievement, we begin March and celebrate the achievements of American women.

The origins of March as Women’s History Month began when President Ronald Reagan proclaimed the week of March 7, 1982 as the first Women’s History Week.

After being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project in 1987, Congress then designated March as Women’s History Month, beckoning Americans to celebrate and honor the achievements of women.  However, have we truly answered that call?

If you didn’t know that March was Women’s History Month you are not alone. Women’s History Month has been an existence for longer than I have been alive, yet this is the first year I’ve known about it. I am spreading the word and you should too.

Throughout American history women have made enormous contributions to society in this country and all over the world. As President Reagan said in his first Women’s Proclamation, “American women of every race, creed and ethnic background helped found and build our Nation in countless recorded and unrecorded ways.”

American women have succeeded in every human endeavor. They are doctors, lawyers, judges, teachers and so much more.  In a growing number of American households, women wear the figurative pants, the literal act of which was legally prohibited in America and remains illegal in many other countries (France just this past month  revoked its 214-year-old law prohibiting women from doing so!).

Despite contributions that equal those of men, few women are treated, rewarded, or paid as if they are. And few of America’s trailblazing foremothers are recognized by history. Raising awareness of women’s accomplishments will help many realize how important women are and why we deserve equal treatment, respect, pay and reward.

 Women are our mothers, aunts, sisters, cousins, and friends. They protect us by fighting in the army, they teach us, they lead us, and they even make our lives easier with their inventions that are used by many of us every day. Did you know that a woman invented the windshield wiper? The refrigerator? Eye glasses?

Innumerable female achievements have been overlooked for far too long. Since the beginning of time we have learned “HIStory.” Now it is time to begin to honor amazing women by spreading HERstory. Women’s history is everyone’s herstory and it should be told!

Here’s how you can help: Please join us on Twitter (@ywcaboston  Hashtags: #whmtrivia #herstory #womenshistorymonth) and test your knowledge of remarkable American heroes who just happen to be women. Play with your friends and family, and spread the word!