Written by Ms Gillard
International Women’s Day – a celebration of gender balance.
#BalanceForBetter on March 10th
This year St Christopher’s Students supported the quest for gender balance by celebrating International Women’s Day. Dressed in purple t-shirts, which sported the logo #BalanceForBetter, Students raised BD 622 to donate to female entrepreneurs in Less Economically Developed Countries through Kiva.org and to help disadvantaged girls in Sub-Saharan Africa get access to education through the charity CAMFED.
Four successful and high profile women from the Bahrain community visited the school to talk about their roles and achievements. Halel Engineer, CEO of Environment Arabia, Bahrain’s first ever environmental Scientist, came to speak about her groundbreaking environmental work, in the field of artificial reefs. Deena Shipwright, who is known to many of our students through Tekkers Football Academy, which she runs with her husband, came to speak to students about her career in professional football and her many achievements, including her record breaking football match, recorded in the Guinness Book of Records, played at the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest football match played in the world. This was played to raise awareness for Equal Playing Field, which seeks to advance women’s equality in sport.
Dr Layla Alhalwachi, professor of gender studies at the Polytechnic of Bahrain and advisor to the Supreme Council for Women gave an interesting lecture to our Year 10 students on the origins and meaning of the term “female empowerment”. Our final speaker of the day was former St Christopher’s student, Yaz Fayek, who has led a very interesting and varied career, starting off as the first female rally car driver, winning sponsorship from companies such as Batelco and then working for a decade as an international football agent; she is now an archaeologist who specialises in neanderthal anthropology. Year 9 gave Yaz a very warm reception.
Before the day, many students and staff showed their support by balancing for better around the school. Photos were displayed in reception and on the tv monitors, so that students could see themselves and their friends supporting gender balance!
Overall, it was a very successful day and helped raise awareness about the need for gender balance. We are already looking forward to celebrating this next year!