Wow what a week it has been! With the pandemic, lockdown and government restrictions still at the forefront of everyone’s minds, no one knew if we would be able to do anything for International Women’s Day in 2021.

This time last year, myself and the other ‘Inspiring Women‘ hosted an amazing event in Scarborough with over 400 people attending throughout the day. When I think back to that sunny day and all of the fantastic workshops, inspirational speakers and amazing business showcase stands we had arranged, none of us knew what was just around the corner or the impact it would have on all of our lives over the next 12 months. The 6th March 2020 seems like a lifetime ago and a lot has happened since then.

This year’s theme was #choosetochallenge and it has definitely been a challenging year for everyone. For us, it was also a challenge to see if we would be able to deliver an event schedule that would be just as engaging and interactive as previous years. We had to look at doing everything in a different way and we did this by thinking about what technology we could use to make the event as accessible as possible, across a number of different platforms, which enabled us to pull together a full week of virtual workshops, videos and Facebook Live sessions rather than just one day.

As everything was online this year, our audience has grown from just the Yorkshire Coast to people taking part across the rest of region as well as some international attendees from Portugal, America and Canada. We really have been celebrating ‘International Women’s Day’ Internationally!!!

We started our International Women’s Day celebrations with a virtual networking session, a lunchtime current affairs discussion, business question time with local Entrepreneurs and a Q&A with a Wellness specialist. As the week progressed we had workshops on Blogging, Personal Branding and Financial Planning, as well as Yoga, Singing and Dance. One of our creative painting workshops was that popular we had to put on a second session, and both sold out very quickly.

Along side all of these amazing workshops and Facebook live sessions, we were able to share videos from a number of amazing inspirational women talking about their lives, their challenges and the journeys they have gone on as well as some fantastic hints, tips and guidance to better yourself or your business.

We have an amazing gallery of photos on our website with everyone showing their #choosetochallenge pose and telling us what they want to challenge in the world today as well as a number of inspirational blogs written by our members about challenges they have faced or change in their lives and I would encourage you to go and have a look.

We ended the week with an online Quiz and social event based on Inspiring Women in music, film, TV and history, and what a fun night we had celebrating another really successful week of events.

Throughout the whole of March we are also running an online draw to win a beautiful painting by Delia Prudence or a fantastic Temple Spa set donated from Jennie-Marie Glover. Anyone wishing to take part can donate £2 per number via out JustGiving page in aid of EVA Women’s Aid an amazing women’s charity that have helped so many that have been stuck in abusive relationships during the pandemic.

We are still accepting donations to our Just giving page here, and there are still numbers available in our draw. If you would like to enter you need to donate and then email me to request your numbers.

We have recorded everything, so if you missed any of the sessions, you can go back and watch them via our YouTube channel along with being able to look back at our previous International Women’s Day events.

I am honoured to be part of such an amazing group of inspiring women and we should all celebrate the women and girls around us, not just on International Women’s Day, but every day. Please show your support to others who may need it as you just don’t know the impact that you will have on someone else’s life.