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Harrisonburg International Women’s Day celebration is held virtually amid pandemic

The 5th annual International Women’s Day celebration moved online this year due to COVID-19 concerns.
Published: Mar. 6, 2021 at 10:27 PM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - For the last few years the City of Harrisonburg has held an International Women’s Day March on the weekend closest to International Women’s Day.

This year, the event was moved online amid COVID-19 concerns.

The theme for the 2021 celebration was “choose to challenge,” in the hopes that community members will actively choose to fight oppression every day.

“Rise up. Don’t let situations hold you back and pull you down. Just challenge yourself, challenge the oppression, challenge the assumptions and challenge the ideas that people around you have. Just prove yourself,” Shama Perveen, a member of the event’s planning committee, said.

Panelists and speakers shared personal experiences of racism, sexism, challenges faced by the LGBTQ community, among other oppressions.

The goal of the event was to let all women in the community know they are supported and have a voice and to show the importance of female empowerment.

“Because we have around us strong women who [do] good things, who show us that it is not impossible if you have a will and if you challenge yourself...” planning committee member Edith Monga, said. “Challenge yourself, challenge your doubt, challenge your fear, reach your goal, and celebrate your achievements.”

The event had dance, songs, and poetry by local artists.

The planning team said they were thankful to have the online event, but hope to be able to gather together in person next year.

International Women’s Day is Monday, March 8th.

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