‘Break the Bias’: that’s this year’s campaign theme of 2022’s International Women’s Day.
The motto aims to create a diverse, equitable and inclusive society in which the role of women is celebrated.
In Kelowna, the local legion branch has a new president, the first leader that is a woman in its 96-year-history.
Darlene McCaffery, Kelowna Legion Branch 26’s new president, has been working at the branch for over 20 years.
She’s proud to be the new president of what some people would call an old-school ‘old boys club’.
“I think it’s quite representative of what society is now,” said McCaffery. “Women are taking leading roles finally. I hope it continues.”
McCaffery has set some new goals for the branch. For one, she wants to see some younger faces at their location.
“I would like to see the Legion grow, of course, and I certainly want to get some young veterans. This has been my goal since day one, to get our young veterans in here,” said McCaffery.
“We built this place for them, and they have to carry the torch when we are gone.”
The Kelowna Heritage Museum is also hosting a virtual event for International Women’s Day, highlighting historic women’s stories from the Okanagan.
“It’s a day to celebrate women’s stories. And of course with my background working here at the museum, I’m very well aware over history that its tends to be the men’s stories that have been saved and documented,” said Jen Garner, Kelowna Museums Society’s head of programming.
“This is a day where we get to dig a bit deeper in the information and bring to light some of the women’s stories from our history.”
The museum says there are only a few spots left in the virtual event, but that anyone interested can head over to their website and sign up. The event starts at 7 p.m.
“Its a Zoom. You can’t include all (of the stories), but we try to share a big diversity of stories of different women, from different cultural backgrounds, who had huge impacts on their communities,” said Garner.
There are other celebrations happening around the Okanagan as well. The Canadian Federation of University Women Vernon is holding a poetry contest and Okanagan College held a celebration at their school.
Okanagan College also had a few activities for students to partake in.