Celebrating ELBA’s Inspirational Women

 In News

We are looking forward to celebrating International Women’s Day on the 8th of March with the rest of the world. It is one of many occasion to celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievement of women. We’ll be bringing you inspirational stories everyday during the week of 8th March from the women we work with to understand their fight to overcome the barriers of inequality, and their achievements in inspiring others and reaching their goals.

ELBA works with the private as well as the charity sector and local authorities, and we hope that by celebrating women across these areas, we can promote gender equality and cross-sector women’s empowerment #PressforProgress.

Victoria Atkins, the recently appointed Minister for Women, has called for more female participation on boards, a figure which is currently at 25%.(1) According to her recommendation, women should constitute a third of board directors in the UK’s largest listed companies by 2020. In the charity sector, just over 400,000 charity trustee positions in the UK are held by women, equating to 48% of all trustee positions. However, the larger the organisation, the smaller proportion of women according to research from the NCVO.(2) Through ELBA’s Board Builders programme we help recruit board members and have successfully placed over 20 women on boards in community organisations over the last year. This month, on the 7th of March we have our BoardMatch3 event where several women’s organisation will take part in the search for new trustees.

We work with many women’s organisations in east London, in boroughs that have particular high rates of Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG). According to Tower Hamlets Council, there are 6,000 reported cases of domestic violence per year, which represents around ⅓ of the estimated number of incidences. Nationally, the police receives reporting of VAWG every 4 minutes and it is estimated that every 1 in 3 women will be victims of VAWG throughout their lifetime, regardless of their background and level of employment. In addition, the police forces have suffered cuts that decreases their capacity to monitor VAWG reporting to help them shape a more holistic response. Women’s organisations and shelters are in particular need of building capacity to meet the high and rising demand; this is something ELBA supports with. We assist women’s organisations by providing mentors, visitors and workshops for their beneficiaries, renovating spaces and places and building capacity in organisations that work with survivors of VAWG. We encourage our partners and supporters to get in touch if they wish to support such organisations, we have a variety of opportunities enabling you to do so.

During the week of Women’s Day from the 5th to the 9th of March, ELBA will be posting stories from inspirational women from a variety of backgrounds in business, community or charity, who all share their insight into what it is like to be a woman and achieving to inspire in what they do. They will share their story with us about their road to success; the challenges they faced or continue to face due to their gender; how they overcome these, as well as what International Women’s Day means to them.

Look out for them on Twitter and our website! #PressforProgress

1. Big investors champion the battle for more women on boards Financial Times, February 18 2018 https://www.ft.com/content/fec3b3b4-119d-11e8-8cb6-b9ccc4c4dbbb
2. How many trustees of voluntary organisations are there in the UK? https://data.ncvo.org.uk/a/almanac12/how-many-trustees-of-voluntary-organisations-are-there-in-the-uk/

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