Call to action: “invite women to our table, hear their voices.”

Jessica and Nadhiya, working for an Enviu program

Today, on International Women’s Day, you might be expecting me to talk about my journey, my leadership and the importance of bringing women into leadership positions. And don’t get me wrong: the need for equal and balanced working environments is a very important topic (on every day of the year). But as I watch the news, talking to IKEA Foundation partners and coaching women in some very challenging parts of the world, I find myself thinking about all the women who don’t have my platform; women who aren’t able to share their story.

Women are facing the biggest challenges, like trying to survive and keep their families safe in areas of conflict, or confronting severe threats caused by climate change. Young women are losing hope for the future, because of displacement or limited access to jobs. So as a first step to Inspire Inclusion which is this year’s theme for International Women’s Day, I want to side with the many women and I want us all to try harder to make sure their voices are heard.

I’m fortunate enough to have grown up in a time and place that did a lot to bring women to the forefront. Had I been raised in a different environment, I might not have been where I am today. Do we, women from the ‘global north’, do enough to listen to women who have very different experiences from our own? Are we curious enough to listen to the women closest to the most challenging problems we face? How do we bring their voices into the conversations we’re holding? And their experiences into the solutions we need? If not, how focused are we on making the change we wish to see?!

As the female CEO of one of the world’s biggest philanthropical organisations, I want to make sure I listen to those women – and that we all do. We need to listen to women who are caught in the middle of what we’re trying to change. We need to listen because only then will we know what their real problems are, and how to solve them. We need to listen if we want to make a difference.

Take energy poverty: improving energy coverage requires accessible, affordable, reliable, solar-powered solutions. But it’s not just about providing energy to some of the most vulnerable communities, it’s about the everyday societal problems this energy can solve, it’s about improving livelihoods and lives. By listening to women in remote parts of India, for example to Jeevana, supported by our partner @Selco Foundation,  we know that energy access can mean everything from improved safety and health to education and business opportunities. Our partners have developed solutions that best meet their needs.

I’m proud that, at the IKEA Foundation, we work with partners and programmes who put people at the centre of the solution. After all, our success depends on our ability to involve the people (often, women) closest to the problem; to develop the most sustainable solution based on real needs. For that, women need a seat at the table.

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  • Our food systems are not working for people and the planet. We must transition to an approach that respects the environment and ensures the wellbeing of people now and in the future. ๐Ÿฅ•

At the World Circular Economic Forum our Programme Manager, Annelies Withofs, talked about the Circular Food Systems for Rwanda programme which supports farmers, entrepreneurs, and businesses to shift towards #RegenerativeAgriculture and circular systems. 

Learn more about the programme via the link in our bio ๐Ÿ”—

#ClimateCrisis #ClimateSolutions #SustainableFoodSystems #wcef2024
Our food systems are not working for people and the planet. We must transition to an approach that respects the environment and ensures the wellbeing of people now and in the future. ๐Ÿฅ•

At the World Circular Economic Forum our Programme Manager, Annelies Withofs, talked about the Circular Food Systems for Rwanda programme which supports farmers, entrepreneurs, and businesses to shift towards #RegenerativeAgriculture and circular systems. 

Learn more about the programme via the link in our bio ๐Ÿ”—

#ClimateCrisis #ClimateSolutions #SustainableFoodSystems #wcef2024
Our food systems are not working for people and the planet. We must transition to an approach that respects the environment and ensures the wellbeing of people now and in the future. ๐Ÿฅ• At the World Circular Economic Forum our Programme Manager, Annelies Withofs, talked about the Circular Food Systems for Rwanda programme which supports farmers, entrepreneurs, and businesses to shift towards #RegenerativeAgriculture and circular systems. Learn more about the programme via the link in our bio ๐Ÿ”— #ClimateCrisis #ClimateSolutions #SustainableFoodSystems #wcef2024
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