This International Women’s Day, The Weekly celebrates influential women who are challenging the status quo to change the world for good.
Women make up around 50 per cent of the global population. Yet, despite all the amazing contributions the fairer sex has made in breaking new ground across many disciplines, obstacles like patriarchy, sexism and misogyny still affect women’s lives.
International Women’s Day on march 8 aims to celebrate the achievements of women, and highlight gender inequality issues that hold millions of females back from living full and enriching lives. To celebrate the occasion, we’re featuring six incredible women who inspire us to dream for a better world, and have the courage to speak out to change it.
Academy Award-winning Actress & Special Envoy to the UNHCR
Angelina Jolie’s journey as Hollywood hotshot with a heart has been well documented by the media, but it isn’t just for show. The actress’s extensive humanitarian work over the years has served as an inspiration to us all.
Eye Opening: Angelina was in Cambodia filming a movie in 2001 when her eyes started to open. “It changed my perspective. I realised there was so much about history that I had not been taught in school, and so much about life that I needed to understand, and I was very humbled by it,” she says.
Diplomatic Status: That humility led the actress to contact the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to learn about the agency, before joining them as a Goodwill Ambassador. Her work has taken her to more than 30 countries, including some war zones, to raise awareness for displaced refugees worldwide. In 2010, she was promoted to the rank of Special Envoy.
A Mighty Heart: Angelina’s generosity doesn’t stop there. According to tax records in 2006, when she and Brad Pitt were still together, they donated more than USD$8 million to various charity organisations. “When I met survivors of war and famine and rape, I learned what life is like for most people in the world and how fortunate I was,” says the actress. “I realised how sheltered I had been, and I was determined never to be that way again.”