IWD 2022: ASIA EMPOWERED #breakthebias

IWD2022 Asia Empowered #breakthebias

8th March marks International Women’s Day and while we believe that every day should celebrate the achievements of women and promote gender equality, we still have a long road ahead. We are highlighting some brilliant female change-makers that are all about this year’s theme #breakthebias  

A shout out to their strong commitment to make the world a better place, specifically within social work, innovation, female empowerment and sustainability.

Ananya Tiwari, India

Ananya Tiwari, India IWD 2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: UIUC

Over 100 million girls are arranged for child marriages in India. There can be many reasons for that (e.g. tradition, socio-economic background, the region where the girls come from) but in the end, what matters is to reduce this number. Ananya, through her NGO SwaTaleem, is working with marginalized communities on their socioemotional skills to stop child marriage.


Alicia Lui, Hong Kong

Alicia Lui, Hong Kong IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: TEDxTinHauWomen

Studies show that girls are taught to be more cautious and less adventurous than boys. This shows in the sports that girls chose to play (if they play any). The benefits of playing sports go beyond physical aspects: camaraderie, social skills, teamwork, a sense of belonging and self-work, confidence, learning commitment, focus or improved academic performance. Alicia founded the charity WISE as a tool for empowerment through sports.

Bowie Lam, Hong Kong

Bowei Lam, Hong kong IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: Lingnan university

Bowie is fighting for a world that is safe for young women with Teen’s Key, an organization that focuses mostly on young women working in the sex industry. An industry that is very difficult to leave, as many women don’t see a way out.
Bowie’s team has worked for 11 years providing education, support, health checks, health interventions and a renewed hope to thousands of young women and girls. 

Bonus: To hear more about Bowie sharing Teen’s Key’s mission and her story listen to this interview led by The DO’s Managing Director Asia, Belinda Esterhammer 

JinKyeong Cho, South Korea

JinKyeong Cho, South Korea IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: Eleven Media Group

JinKyeong is a human rights activist from South Korea and fights for the protection of sexually exploited victims, commonly rejected by certain societies. The activist helped the government implement Korea’s Anti-Sex Trade Law through her organization Teen Up.
Sexual exploitation of underage girls is a rapidly growing issue and her organization is working with a wide-ranging coalition of civic groups to push for change.

Mira Rai, Nepal

Mira Rai, Nepal IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: iRunFar

This trail running change-maker became a sensation in Nepal, inspiring women all around the world to don’t let their origins determine what they could or couldn’t do. Mira, originally from a small and remote village in Eastern Nepal, who was forced to become a Maoist child soldier, has since empowered young female athletes through her platform, Mira Rai Initiative, giving them an opportunity to chase their dreams and to prove that a path is not set in stone.

Mukteshwari Bosco, India

Mukteshwari Bosco, India IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: Ashoka Breaking Barriers

Over 90% of India’s population lack access to healthcare financing, but there is a woman changing that.
Mukti from Healing Fields has spent the last twenty years developing community health, as well as establishing a comprehensive health education and health financing system for rural communities in India to access fair, cost-effective and high-quality medical treatment. 

Natalie Chung, Hong Kong

Natalie Chung, Hong Kong IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: Tatler

Named one of the most impactful young sustainability leaders in Asia Pacific, climate advocate Natalie Chung founded V’air to promote climate education and sustainable tourism.

The Gen T nominee and social innovator was also appointed by the Hong Kong Government as a youth member at the Council for Sustainable Development in 2019 to deliver long-term decarbonisation public engagement for the city.

Shabana Basij-Rasikh, Afghanistan

Shabana Basij-Rasikh, Afghanistan  IWD2022 Asia Empowered
Image source: National Geographic

Shabana’s goal “is to create the best-educated generation of women in Afghanistan’s history“ and founded SOLA’s (School of Leadership Afghanistan) to help her achieve that goal. Shabana was named one of CNN International’s Leading Women of 2014 and one of National Geographic’s 2014 Emerging Explorers. She is a global ambassador for Girl Rising, with a call to action seeking investment in girls’ education worldwide.

The fight for equality is a daily one and one where we are co-creating solutions with our partners such as the UN Women Industry Disruptor: India funded by the European Union. The UN Women Industry Disruptor (India) is an acceleration program that provides female entrepreneurs with access to mentorship, investors and the opportunity to grow their ideas and increase their impact through scaling their venture. 

Want to make a difference together? Get in touch!

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