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International Women's Day 2023 - Fatima's story

Happy International Women's Day!

International Women's Day (IWD) is a global holiday celebrated annually on 8 March as a focal point in the women's rights movement, bringing attention to issues such as gender equality, reproductive rights, and violence and abuse against women.

This year’s theme is #EmbraceEquity – not equality, but equity. The aim of the IWD 2023 #EmbraceEquity campaign theme is to get the world talking about Why equal opportunities aren't enough. People start from different places, so true inclusion and belonging require equitable action.

We can all truly embrace equity – it's something we need to think about, know, value and embrace. Because equity means creating an inclusive world. You can find out more here.

Did you know women take on three times as much unpaid care and domestic work as men around the world?

At Carers Network, today we want to recognise the invisible contribution of unpaid female carers, starting from Fatima, who was a full-time carer for her father.

“I was a full time carer for 3yrs having cared for my father who was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer in October 2019. A few months later the covid pandemic kicked in.

Quite early on in my caring role I was introduced to the Carers Network and I can honestly say they were and remain an incredible support system to me.

Switching from being a full time working professional  to being a full time unpaid carer was not an easy transition. It was incredibly humbling  watching someone you deeply love fight cancer and slowly deteriorate. At times it was scary, overwhelming and sometimes isolating, especially during the peak of the pandemic.

Becoming a full time unpaid carer affected not just my mental and physical being but also hit me economically and so having access to free activities that in turn helped my mental sanity was a godsend.

Whilst it was difficult , my time as my father’s carer was also the greatest honour of my life, I was by his side every day until the end. I have beautiful memories that will stay with me forever and I would not change a moment of it. And Carers Network played an important role during this time.

To all unpaid carers out there, it may seem like you are alone but you are not.”