Who Run the World? Girls.
This month, let’s celebrate women! Even though it's barely begun, 2019 has already been a busy year for the women in the city. Some amazing events and exhibitions have already come to town, and with many more upcoming, there’s no doubt that the city of London shows their support for the equality of women. These exciting and diverse experiences showcase the talents, strengths, hardships, and joys of women in our community and beyond. Check out the highlights of past and future events below!
London Lightning Shine the Light game at Budweiser Gardens
On Saturday January 26th, the London Lightning partnered with the London Abused Women’s Centre to host their annual Shine the Light game to help raise awareness on women abuse. Purple is a symbol of courage, survival and honour, and has come to symbolize the campaign to end violence against women. Fans were encouraged to wear purple to the game to show their support, and the players wore specialty purple jerseys, which were auctioned off during the game with all proceeds going towards the London Abused Women’s Centre. The opening ceremonies consisted of a video highlighting the goals of the Shine the Light Campaign; namely, raising awareness of men’s violence against women by standing in solidarity with abused women, supporting victims and survivors in understanding that any shame and/or blame they may feel does not belong to them but to the perpetrators of their abuse, and to raising the profile of the community agencies that can provide abused women with help as they attempt to live their lives free from violence. During intermission the lights went out, and patrons shone their lights to show solidarity in a moving display.
Women to the Front
Women to the Front is an exhibition that will be held at Museum London from February 2nd – March 31st. With the current landscape of the music industry and conversation surrounding gender parity, the display pays respect to voices that are often missing from the story of the Canadian music industry. It celebrates female-identifying road warriors and stadium stars by taking a look inside the layered and complex world of being female in the music industry. The influence of Canadian women in music is indisputable. Throughout the years, Canadian women have and continue to dominate the charts, break records, and innovate. From worn out monitors in clubs to negotiating levels with sound guys who don’t take women seriously, and the loading docks of sold-out arenas, one thing remains the same: it’s not always easy. Isolation, sexism, and racism run wild in the industry, and this exhibition will highlight the successes in spite of it all.
Some of these women took the role of mother, some took the role of manager. Some built careers on stage and some built those stages. Some had radio hits, some smash streaming records. Regardless of their job title or position on stage, the legacy from coast to coast is undeniable. What have Canadian women done for the music industry? The answer is, of course, a lot.
The story continues to be written, and connecting our past and next generations of female-identifying musicians and behind the scenes folks to a vast the rich discography that is Canadian music is imperative. Who invited women to the front? The women.
Women’s Rivalry Series
There’s nothing Canadians love more than hockey, and this month the women's Canada and US teams are the stars of the game! Southern Ontario will be the backdrop for a three-game cross-border series between Canada’s National Women’s Team and the U.S. Women’s National Team this month. The series will kick off next week on Tuesday, Feb. 12th at Budweiser Gardens with a sold out game. The teams will play again Thursday, Feb. 14th at Scotiabank Arena, home of the Toronto Maple Leafs, before shifting south of the border for the final game Sunday, Feb. 17th at Little Caesars Arena in Detroit, Mich., home of the Detroit Red Wings.
“This rivalry has continued to build over the years from world championships to the Olympics, and this series is one more opportunity to showcase the top players from our two countries to fans,” said Gina Kingsbury, Hockey Canada’s director of women’s national teams. “While this series is a friendly competition, it serves as an important measuring stick for us in our short-term competitions, including the IIHF Women’s World Championship in April.”
If these great events are any indication, February will be a big month for women in London, Ontario, and the celebration of International Women’s Day comes shortly after on March 8th. This year’s campaign theme for International Women’s Day is #BalanceForBetter and provides a unified direction to guide and galvanize continuous collective action. Collective action and shared responsibility for driving a gender-balanced world is key. International Women's Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women - while also marking a call to action for accelerating gender balance.
The future is exciting. Let's build a gender-balanced world together! Everyone has a part to play - all the time, everywhere. While the work needed to achieve these goals can be difficult at times, the above events demonstrate that it can also be fun, engaging, and most importantly, worthwhile. Whether at a sporting event, a gallery installation, or beyond, come on out and show your support for women everywhere, London!