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In Nov. 2021 after ten years of our evolving mission and impact, we changed our name to Gathering Ground. You may still find reference to our old name Creative New Jersey in posts created prior to Nov. 2021.

Celebrating Women’s History Month

As we reflect on the significance and importance of Women’s History Month, we are compelled to delve into the ongoing dialogue surrounding feminism, equity and fairness, and the various paths towards women’s empowerment.

In a New York Times opinion piece titled “Have You Wished Your Mother a Happy International Women’s Day Yet?” by Kristin Ghodsee, Ghodsee challenges us to broaden our perspective as we celebrate women, urging us to move beyond traditional notions of motherhood and recognize women in all their roles – as friends, sisters, workers, and comrades. She highlights the importance of honoring women’s diverse experiences and contributions, emphasizing that International Women’s Day is a time to celebrate solidarity and collective action.

At Gathering Ground, we echo Ghodsee’s sentiments and are committed to fostering an inclusive environment where all women are valued and celebrated, regardless of their roles or societal expectations. We are committed to amplifying the voices of women and advocating for meaningful change on issues that matter most.

Women’s History Month is a time to celebrate the achievements, resilience, and contributions of women throughout history, while also recognizing the ongoing struggles for gender equality and justice.

While we celebrate the accomplishments of trailblazing women who have shattered glass ceilings and paved the way for future generations, we must also acknowledge the persistent inequalities and injustices that continue to impact women’s lives today.

Pay Disparity: despite decades of progress, women continue to earn less than their male counterparts for the same work, with women of color facing even greater income disparities. This disparity not only undermines women’s economic security but also perpetuates broader inequalities in our society. It’s time to address this injustice and ensure equal pay for equal work.

Reproductive rights are another critical area where women’s autonomy and dignity are at stake. Access to comprehensive reproductive healthcare, including contraception and safe abortion services, is essential for women’s health and well-being. Yet, these rights are under constant threat, with efforts to roll back reproductive rights gaining traction in various parts of the world. We must fiercely defend women’s right to make decisions about their own bodies and futures.

Additionally, birth equity remains a pressing issue that disproportionately affects marginalized communities. Women of color continue to experience higher rates of maternal mortality and morbidity compared to their white counterparts. Addressing systemic racism and ensuring equitable access to maternal healthcare are critical steps towards achieving birth equity and safeguarding the health and lives of all mothers and babies.

As we celebrate Women’s History Month, let us honor the achievements of women past and present, recommit ourselves to the ongoing pursuit of gender equity in all spheres of society, and critically engage with the systemic barriers that continue to impede progress.

Let’s also applaud the remarkable women who make an impact in our daily lives – the nurturing guidance of our mothers, the unwavering support of our sisters, the camaraderie of our friends, the collaboration of our colleagues, and the wisdom of our mentors. Their presence lights the way and enriches our paths, reminding us of the profound impact and invaluable contributions of women in shaping our world.

Their strength, resilience, and passion serve as beacons of inspiration for us all. It is in their stories of perseverance and determination that we find the courage to pursue our own dreams and aspirations. By celebrating their achievements and acknowledging their struggles, we honor the indomitable spirit of women everywhere.

We encourage you to read Kristin Ghodsee’s insightful opinion piece here (you may have to create a free account to access the article) and join us in honoring the women who enrich our lives and communities and continue our work to advocate for women’s rights and issues that matter.

Together, we can build a future where all women are empowered to thrive and lead fulfilling lives.

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“The Orange Call to Collaboration ushered in a period of increased collaboration among the municipality, school district and nonprofit and community-based organizations.”

– Robin Gordon – Director of Administration, HANDS INC. (Orange)