In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, the BBG and its broadcasters marked the day with a mixture of special in-depth reports, videos and multimedia pieces on women’s issues.
For example, VOA reported on the progress of women’s health in Africa and the South African government’s tough new stance on rape, while RFE/RL reported on the challenge of balancing work and home life for working mothers in several countries. Radio Free Asia examined employment issues that women face in China, and TV and Radio Martí brought in two experts to look at the current situation for women in Cuba.
Stories such as RFA’s piece on Kachin women who are caught in the crossfire of ethnic fighting in Burma, VOA’s coverage on how minimum wage increases would affect American women, and how the misuse of traded weapons could adversely affect women, all shed light on issues in a larger context.
Women’s accomplishments and contribution to society was another major focus for the day. Alhurra’s program “Focus” presented a special Women’s Day episode which profiled an American educated Pakistani woman who created a system of micro finance loans and a female obstetrician in California who developed a solar energy suitcase to provide power to doctors in Africa, with the hopes of reducing maternal mortality. Radio Free Asia highlighted the courageous work of a prominent female blogger who has been jailed in Vietnam.
Coverage included IWD celebrations, both big and small, from the US State Department’s recognition of “Nine Women of Courage,” to a fashion show held by female prisoners at a pre-trial detention center in Moscow.
At BBG headquarters, the agency marked the day by visiting language services throughout the building, handing out flowers and recording video messages. The multilingual messages (compiled below) were Tweeted (@BBGgov) and distributed via the new Twitter video platform Vine.