Women of The Church of Jesus Christ of Later-day Saints in the greater Chattanooga area are celebrating International Women’s Day with a day of service scheduled for Saturday.
IWD – held since the 1900s – was formalized in Copenhagen, Denmark in 1911. In 1977, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution inviting member states to proclaim March 8 as the UN Day for Women’s Rights and International Peace. Then, as now, the intent has been to pursue equal opportunity for women in all aspects of life. In some cultures, IWD is like Mother’s Day.
This year’s IWD theme is “Choose to Challenge,” noting that by challenge comes change. Latter-day Saint women in the greater Chattanooga area are honoring the theme by bringing about change through a women’s day of service.
The day begins with a drive thru breakfast from 9-9:20 a.m. at the meetinghouse located at 3067 Ooltewah Ringgold Road. Service projects begin at 10 a.m. Projects include Billion Graves Chattanooga, Billion Grave Ringgold, and Billion Graves Ooltewah – an initiative to preserve precious records found in cemeteries.
Women will also be serving at the Chattanooga Community Kitchen – organizing the pantry and making and packing sack lunches that will go out on Sunday to homeless camps. Other service initiatives include helping out at the Chattanooga Zoo; making superhero capes for children at Erlanger’s hospital; providing gardening and landscaping support for the Salvation Army by prepping community garden beds, spreading mulch and preparing soil; and taking dogs on a field trip for the McKamey Animal Center. The dogs will be wearing “Adopt Me!” vests.
“We invite women of all faiths to join with us in celebrating our community and IWD,” said Celeste Ward, president of the Chattanooga Stake Relief Society of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Relief Society – the women’s organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which also celebrates its birthday in March – is one of the oldest and largest women’s organization in the world. Its intent is to invite women everywhere to live the gospel of Jesus Christ. “Our theme for Saturday’s day of service is, ‘Love one Another.’ It is based on John 15:12 in which Jesus states, ‘This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.’ With Christ, all things are possible. Only with Christ can we affect real change,” Mrs. Ward said.
For registration information and more details about Saturday’s women’s day of service click here.
For more information about issues facing women around the world, learn more at www.womanstats.org– a project undertaken by principal investigators from Brigham Young University, University of Minnesota-Duluth, Brown University, Harvard, Yale, Texas A&M, Emory, Northeastern, University of Kent at Canterbury, Sergio Arboleda, Ankara Social Sciences University, and Northeastern.