The Public Affairs Section of the United States Consulate General in conjunction with Access Bank Plc and Idea Builders Initiative launched the 2015 International Women’s Month on Thursday March 5, 2015 at Access Bank Head Office Plot 999c, Danmole Street Off Adeola Odeku, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria.
Theme: MAKE IT HAPPEN – Women as Civic & Political Leaders
US Consul General, Jeffery Hawkins
Olajumoke Adenowo – CEO, AD Consulting & Founder, Awesome Treasures Foundation
Adesuwa Onyenokwe – CEO, TW Magazine
Fela Durotoye – Founder, Gemstone
Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji – Founder/CEO of RISE GROUP
Theatrical Production Directed by: Ifeoma Fafunwa
International Women’s Day, is observed annually around the world to celebrate women, to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played extraordinary roles in the history of their countries and communities.
This event was aimed at encouraging advocacy for women’s progress in every way and for challenging the status quo for women’s equality.
Jeffrey Hawkins, U.S. Consul General opened the event with remarks focusing on women’s role as civic leaders and political actors.
He said that Nigeria will be a better nation if women are given more opportunities to participate in governance at all levels. The Public Diplomacy Officer, Rhonda Watson introduced a film about Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman to run for the office of President of the United States.
The program also featured a panel discussion session with the following speakers: Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji, Olajumoke Adenowo, Adesuwa Onyenokwe, Fela Durotoye, Amaechi Okobi and Ope Wemi-Jones, Access Bank executives.
Renowned motivational speaker, Fela Durotoye gave remarks on gender inequality in the corporate environment, organizations that practice gender equality produces the best result. He also said that as women, we must know our worth and demand for it.
Akerele-Ogunsiji, as one of the panelists, I spoke about older women in the society mentoring and grooming the younger women. The younger generation of women must also submit themselves to such mentoring opportunities and respect the grace upon the older women.
Mrs Adenowo lamented about the economic constraints negatively impacting women and discouraging them from taking the lead on the political scene while Mrs Adesuwa talked about Women as nation builders and agents of societal change.
Access Bank Plc. co-sponsored the event as part of its ‘W’ Initiative, which demonstrates the bank’s commitment to enhancing the economic and lifestyle status of women in Africa and expanding the services threshold to encapsulate what matters most to women, thus promoting financial inclusion.