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CONTRIBUTION · 21st March 2011
Arjunna Miyagawa
The Ksan Residence and Shelter’s seams were bursting as community members filled all rooms during the Ksan Society’s International Women’s Day celebration on March 8th. Community members of all ages and gender enjoyed lunch together as they shared stories of women role models and leaders in their lives.

When talking with Terrace City Councillor, Bruce Bidgood, he shared his thoughts on what this day meant to him, stating that he felt privileged as a man to be invited to celebrate women in our day and in the world.

“On a personal level, I would like to acknowledge women in my life that are so important. I have two daughters who area now women and a celebration like this allows me the opportunity to express my desire that they will live in a world that is more just, equitable and free of violence and oppression,” said Bidgood.

Sitting next to Bidgood was another city councillor; Community leader and city councillor, Carol Leclerc.

Leclerc was eager to express her delight in being part of the celebration. “I am delighted to be part of today’s event. I think that it is an important event where women are celebrating with other daughters, sisters, grandmothers, and friends all together. The turnout for the Ksan Society event is great. There are so many people here - men and women, celebrating International Women’s Day,” said Lecrec.

Once lunch was over and things settled down a bit, I was able to sit and chat with Darlene Weterman of Ksan Society. She shared some of her views as well she expressed the society’s need to recognize the importance of this day for both local women and those around the world.

“The reality is that we have come a long way with women’s rights, but there are many women whose rights are being ignored. There are still women that do not have adequate shelter or food, they are not safe in their own communities and around the world,” said Westerman. “Today was great. What was most exciting for me was that as women we felt that we could come together and celebrate because we are women and that this was acknowledged by men who also celebrated the event with us."

The fact that this day was being celebrated by all, regardless of gender seemed to make the event that much more meaningful.

Westerman added that it was good to see women of all walks of life come out and celebrate and that it was not considered an event exclusive to certain demographics.

Personally, I think it is great that here is a day that celebrates women and their achievements. As a son who is forever grateful for everything he has learnt from his mother and one that is thankful on a daily basis for everything she has done, I hope to see many more celebrate this day in the future. There are many other women in my life that are exceptional people. I am thankful for the part they have played thus far in guiding me on my many journeys. You know who you are.

I am sure we all have women in our lives that are helping to make this world the magnificent place it is, and are also helping shape not only our future but the entire planet’s. Let’s be sure they are appreciated and get the deserved and needed support along the way.
City Councillors, Bruce Bidgood and Carol Leclerc
City Councillors, Bruce Bidgood and Carol Leclerc