Empowering Women Starts With You

Women’s empowerment leads to better education, health care, and employment. It also reduces poverty rates, food insecurity, and fosters innovation and economic growth.

Support women’s empowerment by making a donation to a business or organization that makes it a priority. You can also volunteer your time to help women in need.

1. Be your own advocate.

Empowering women starts with you, and the most effective way to do that is to be your own advocate. Don’t let anyone make you feel ashamed of your own interests and passions, and encourage the girls around you to express themselves in whatever way makes them happy.

Ensuring women have access to education is a vital step in providing them with opportunities for economic growth, health, and political participation. It’s also a key component to gender equality and meeting global development goals.

Providing access to clean water resources is another important aspect of female empowerment, as it can help women lead healthier lives and be more productive in their communities. Additionally, ensuring women have rights to property inheritance and land ownership can improve their financial independence.

2. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you deserve.

Women are under intense pressure to adhere to totally impossible standards of beauty and behavior, so it’s especially important for us to celebrate our own unique strengths. Whether that means a dress with a fun print or shoes that don’t quite match, girls and women of all ages deserve to express their personalities without judgment.

Women’s economic empowerment is critical to sustainable development, and closing the gender gap could boost the global economy by USD 7 trillion. [1]

Business leaders can support women’s empowerment by integrating gender equality into their business models and practices. Start by signing on to the WEPs, and encourage your company to communicate its progress through sex-disaggregated data. Then, learn more about how you can help women in the supply chain and empower them to take action.

3. Be a role model.

Women need to be empowered in order to reach their full potential. Empowerment is the ability to make strategic life choices – it’s about agency and resources. It’s a key factor in achieving sustainable development goals and addressing gender inequality, and it requires human rights policies that ensure women’s access to opportunities, jobs, and political participation.

When women thrive, their families, communities and nations flourish, too. That’s why we invest in exchange programs that empower women and girls by improving their cultural perspective, furthering their education, and fostering leadership skills. When women have a seat at the decision-making table, their countries are more resilient and democratic. We call on businesses to join us in committing to gender equality by adopting the Women’s Empowerment Principles and making a commitment to empowering women.

4. Take a stand against negativity.

Gender equality is essential to ending poverty and promoting resilient, democratic societies. Whether it’s taking part in a women’s march, supporting a local female-owned business or donating babysitting services to a new mom, you can help make change happen.

Some negative people are motivated by the desire to drag others down to the level they see themselves at—either because of their own low self-esteem or because they’re consciously trying to protect their egos. But they’re doing you a disservice, and they can be changed with education about negativity bias.

Be a Pollyanna and encourage those around you to lift each other up. Be the change you wish to see in the world. The future of women depends on it. The women who have gone before you have demonstrated that it’s possible.

5. Be vulnerable.

Being vulnerable can seem scary. After all, if we are honest with people, it can expose our flaws and weaknesses. However, it is one of the best ways to develop deeper relationships and build trust.

According to sociologist Brene Brown, there are three misconceptions that lead people to avoid vulnerability. The first is that if you share your challenges, others will see you as petty or arrogant. Another is the belief that vulnerability is only effective for strategic purposes or in order to get something from other people.

Instead, she recommends being more authentic with your relationships and being open to vulnerability for its own sake. Small actions like telling your partner how you really feel when they ask, or sharing a personal story can help build trust and foster a sense of community.