From the United States and Australia to the United Kingdom, March is Women’s History Month. In the last century, and before, women have struggled to create a society of equality against the force of cultures dominated by men. In the Southland, opportunities to celebrate women’s historic contributions include mentoring teens, volunteering for a homeless women’s shelter, film and the struggles of women globally. These opportunities are more than an academic appreciation of women’s history; it’s a chance to continue the legacy of women helping women. Though much has been accomplished, there is more work to be done.
Step Up Women’s Network
510 S. Hewitt St., Suite 111
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Step Up Women’s Network’s work involves mentoring young women and girls to navigate in society. Weekend and after-school programs focus on empowerment for youth from the “under-resourced” community. Nationally based, and working locally, the various programs are professionally organized and nurturing as they do their outreach. Having the confidence needed for education and career requires vision and positive role models. This is a chance to further the tradition of mentoring that has played a critical role in mainstream feminism.
Women’s History Month Screening of “Señorita Extraviada”
Los Angeles Public Library
20939 Sherman Way
Canoga Park, CA 91303
Date: March 24, 2014 at 6pm
A PBS screening of “Senorita Extraviada” proves that women’s history is still evolving. In not so far away Mexico, both by distance and culture, crimes against women continue and authorities ignore the problem. In “celebration of Women’s History Month,” the Canoga Park branch library invites the public to view and discuss an ongoing struggle for rights. This investigative documentary is not for children as the subject matter includes brazen violence, including rape. Although it’s not entertainment and it may be disturbing, it’s a critical awakening to the continuous need to support women around the globe.
Los Angeles Women’s International Film Festival 2014
7500 Glenoaks Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91510
Date: March 15-20, 2014
From March 15 through March 20, 2014, the Alliance of Women Filmmakers combine long and short narratives with documentaries to educate the public on the “social, political and health issues impacting women globally.” In its ninth year, this film festival covers women’s history, current events and how women have shaped our culture through film. The events also raise funds for important women’s causes. For more information about tickets and times, click here.
Downtown Women’s Center
442 S. San Pedro St.
Los Angeles, CA 90013
Homelessness is a growing problem, one that has always been with us. The unique needs of homeless and very low-income women have been served by the Downtown Women’s Center since 1978. The center is the hub of day services and transitional housing. More than material needs, the staff provides counseling to foster “dignity, respect and personal stability.” This nationally recognized organization also provides counseling for employment, healthcare, literacy and how to access other services. The center is eager to let the wider community know of its work through regular tours. Simply check the March events and RSVP, and be ready to learn about solutions to end homelessness among women.
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
8700 Beverly Blvd., Suite 2416
Los Angeles, CA 90048
www.womensguildcs.orgSince the late ’50s, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center’s Women’s Guild has grown from 18 women to well over 1,000 members. Its main focus is raising money for breast cancer research, but that’s not all. This organization reminds the public that heart disease is the “biggest killer of women.” It supports initiatives for lung disease and HIV/AIDS research, as well. Women’s physiology is different from men’s, and prior research has been skewed toward males. The Guild is always seeking new ideas and members as it continues bringing in funding and support for women’s health.
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