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MVRCR Honors Women On International Women’s Day

Utica, NY (WIBX) - Today is International Women’s Day. The annual celebration is in its 101st year of honoring women all over the world. The year’s theme, set by the United Nations is, “Empower Women, End Hunger and Poverty.”

Locally, The Mohawk Valley Resource Center for Refugees is celebrating all women with gifts of flowers and other small class room festivities at the Center. Immigration and Citizenship Manager, Azira Tabucic, who is originally from Bosnia, says this day is a very special one in Europe. “Well, it’s a big day because we’re coming from Europe and in Europe it’s big celebration, it’s really Women’s Day all in one–Mother’s Day included, because there is no other Mother’s Day there.” Tabucic adds that in the Bosnian community, they have a women’s organization that celebrates women on March 10th, and that celebration includes music, food and of course flowers for the ladies.

She says at MVRCR this day is set a side to bring people from different cultures together to talk and share their experiences, such as, how they celebrate International Women’s Day in countries like, Liberia, Sudan, Somalia, and Russia. When asked to share any advice she may want to give to women, Tabucic said, “Stay together and share your experiences from back where you’re coming from and from here–what did you learn here, and just be strong.”

Volunteer Computer Support Specialist at the Center, Lilian Kiraka said this day is celebrated in Tanzania with women wearing special dresses. “And, a group of people come together, maybe as sisters to celebrate so it’s an enjoyable day in my country right now,” she said. Lisanne Divine, Director for Community Integration says staff and volunteers see this day as an opportunity to celebrate. “We’re going to have fun, we’re going to celebrate, so we can share our cultures and share ways for them to empower themselves and take care of themselves, and they can go home and share that with the girls in their lives,” she said.

Executive Assistant, Thalita Bovo, is originally from Brazil. She says this day should serves as a reminder of all the strides made in the Women’s Rights Movement. In addition to celebrating women, some groups are also calling for more action to help women living in conflict zones around the world, as well as, focusing attention on gender based violence issues.

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