The Best Ever UN Women IWD Breakfast

The 2021 Perth UN Women’s International Women’s Day (IWD) Breakfast was the best ever!

Over 600 people attended the UN Women’s IWD breakfast in Perth on Friday 5 March. This breakfast event ran over several time zones connecting with lunch events in other states.  Thousands of people joined the event online, making this a truly national experience.

Each event had two local speakers and then all locations shared a live-streamed presentation from Grace Tame, Australian of the Year. Grace Tame was absolutely brilliant and you could have heard a pin drop during her presentation.  There were quite a few tissues seen wiping eyes as she shared her story and she inspired everyone to be on the look out for ‘grooming’.  (She recently did a similar presentation to the National Press Club).

In Perth, after Aunty Gail Wynn had welcomed us to country, Marion Fulker, CEO of the Committee for Perth, clearly and succinctly showed how WA has the poorest gender equality record in the country.  She used graphics from the excellent Filling the Pool report that showed what we can do about it.  If you have not read the report yet – do so today!

Zahra Al Hilaly, Youth Representative for the UN Women’s Global Generation Equality Task Force, passionately described the importance of storytelling and the challenges of getting more women of colour included in decision making processes.  Too often, their voice is ignored and it was marvellous to see Zahra taking a stand on this issue.

Beth Shaw, Past President of UN Women Australia, described the wonderful work of UN Women and gave a preview of the When Will She be Right campaign that will be formally launched on International Women’s Day, Monday 8 March. The advert for this campaign is very powerful and the campaign has many links to a host of tools to start us on this journey.

Beth explained that, at the rate we are going, we will not achieve gender equality globally for another 100 years – so the challenge is out to achieve this in ten years – yes by 2030!

Minister for Women’s Interests, the Hon Simone McGurk had taken out time of her busy election schedule to attend the entire event and, like everyone else in the audience, was captivated by the information presented.

Tina Altieri from Channel 7 expertly kept the program on track and smoothly handled the live cross to the Sydney event.  She is an excellent warm, professional, MC and it was pleasing to see that Channel 7 did interviews with the speakers after the event for the television news.

We enjoyed a tasty breakfast with excellent service. The AV team and host of volunteers should be congratulated for making everyone so welcome, ensuring the event went smoothly and that Covid practices were in place. On every table, a lucky attendee received a door prize of a marvellous book, produced by Westpac, featuring 200 female leaders – a lovely gesture.

This format for IWD was brilliant – so don’t miss out on next year’s event!

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