A circle of women may just be the most powerful force known to humanity. - Jeanette LeBlanc
Every year I release a track to celebrate #IWD2019 as my way of widening the circle of support for Women This blog comes with a track,Circle, written in support of the work of the charity The Circle, working to empower women worldwide which I first performed at our special #ChaiDay event in November. I also warmly invite you to join our amazing gathering of wonderwomen at our IWD2019 Croydon Celebration 10th March at The Oval Tavern 4-6.30pm.
Honouring the Diversity of Women's Circles
A sphere is made up of not one, but an infinite number of circles; women have diverse gifts, and to say that women's sphere is the family circle is a mathematical absurdity. - Marie Mitchell
Historically, in patriarchy, the traditional woman's role was to orbit around men. Today intersectional feminism campaigns for the recognition that women's circles are infinite and must be inclusive and responsive to the complex ways different forms of discrimination overlap, combine or intersect. Taking pay parity as an example, women with disabilities face a 22% pay gap and 35% are paid under the National Living Wage. Among female graduates, black women face the biggest pay penalty, of £1.62 an hour (9%.) Transgender women can expect to see a wage drop of a third after transitioning.
Claiming the Centre of the Circle
A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform - Diane Mariechild
To stand in the centre of her own circle and exert her own influence is for many women, a radical act that requires defiance of the social conditioning and discrimination she faces daily. The room of one's own that Virginia Woolf could claim as one of the Bloomsbury elite is not available to many women around the world. There is however the inner room in the inner life of a woman that is hers and hers alone. When a woman claims the strength with her and has access to circles of support, she can recover and transform challenges - such as Bina, who escaped a violent marriage in India. It is so important that we continue to widen and celebrate the circles within and around women.
Singing the Circle
The circles of women around us weave invisible nets of love that carry us when we're weak, and sing with us when we are strong. - Sark
I am so grateful for the circles of women I have in my life. I am proud, inspired and excited to be living and working alongside amazing women leaders. Close to home, my sister, Sally Phillips has just been made Chief Inspector of North Herts Police Force - and last year helped secure a groundbreaking conviction of coercive control in a domestic abuse case. In my professional life, I am surrounded by female leaders who play all out and use their many talents to make a difference in the world - choir conductors, composers, singers, musicians, councillors, therapists, teachers, writers. When women team up magic happens - one example is the mass choral fundraising project Sing for Water pioneered by composer Helen Chadwick with events led across the country by a majority of female choir leaders with many wonderful male allies. Creating a circle of shared purpose, women can take a stand for and with each other and send ripples out into the world.
Wishing you a wonderful International Womens Day 2019