As International Women’s Day approaches, we’ve spoken to a number of inspirational women who are leading by example at some prominent co-operatives …
CHRIS HERRIES is a Director of Co-operatives UK.
What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
A celebration of the struggle of all the fantastic women who have gone before us and on whose shoulders we are standing, together with a look to the future and the realms of gender equality both here in the UK and around the world.
What is your experience as a woman in a co-operative-focused organisation?
My early experiences in parts of the consumer movement were not always welcoming, but over the years that has changed significantly for the better. Through working with enlightened women and men in the co-operative movement we have made good progress in developing a positive attitude to gender equality and are now seeking to replicate the excellent results in some sectors across the whole of the movement.
What can be done to improve equality within the movement?
The Co-operative Women’s Challenge has highlighted the fact that many women see mentoring as a very valuable type of support. Setting up a group of women who are happy to be mentors and linking them with aspiring women will help empower more women to take their places in all sectors and at all levels.
Or return to the International Women’s Day 2014 collection
Which female co-operators inspire you? Let us know in the comments below.