Uniting cultures to celebrate International Women’s Day

More than 100 customers and members of the wider community gathered at the Guru Gobind Singh Gurudwara Temple in Sunderland on 8 March to celebrate International Women’s Day 2018.

We marked the day with an event which encouraged attendees to participate in both English and Sikh traditions. Activities included arts and crafts, singing and dancing lessons along with traditional Sikh activities such as henna tattoos and the chance to wear a sari. We also worked with members of the Guru Gobind Singh Gurudwara Temple to provide a lunch of vegetarian curry, rice and samosas as well as a traditional high tea of sandwiches, scones and cakes.

The event was also supported by key local partners including Healthy Steps and Live Life Well who were on hand to offer health and wellbeing advice including help to stop smoking and NHS health checks.

Celebrated annually, International Women’s Day is an opportunity for individuals around the world to come together to help challenge bias; call for gender-balanced leadership and create an inclusive culture. The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day was #PressforProgress and all attendees were encouraged to consider what actions they could take to progress gender parity amongst their friends, colleagues and the wider community.

Lucy Malarkey, Deputy Director (Operations) said: “At Gentoo we are committed to building strong and vibrant communities. Events such as International Women’s Day are a fantastic way to bring people together and give people the chance to try something new and learn from different cultures.  It was brilliant to celebrate the achievements of women across Sunderland and hear all of their ideas on how to progress gender equality. Through our work with local groups, sports clubs and schools, we are proud to work alongside many inspirational women in Sunderland.”


Rehena Sultana, Healthy Steps Worker, Sunderland Bangladesh International Centre said: "The International Women’s Day event reflected the theme ‘press for change’ as numerous women got together from different backgrounds, age and walks of life to celebrate together open heartedly without barriers.

"I feel many felt a lot confident in themselves and ready to make small steps for a bigger change."