- Webinar ‘Towards 2030: The Power of Women to Build a Century of Life’ organized by Bharat Soka Gakkai reiterates women’s role in fostering creative coexistence
The world needs to empower women to guide humanity towards a new era of peace and harmony as war, death, and disease have shattered lives like never before in recent human history, speakers at a webinar organized by Bharat Soka Gakkai BSG)., said on Tuesday.
BSG, the Indian affiliate of the Soka Gakkai International (SGI) a global association of grassroots organizations that seeks to promote the values of peace and respect for all people BSG has been consistently working for 35 years towards women’s empowerment in the country.
The work resonates with the philosophy of Daisaku Ikeda, president of Soka Gakkai International, who believes that women develop deep empathy with people because of their demanding work of protecting family and raising children.
“In contrast with the conflict, exclusion, and force that are the hallmarks of ideology, women are naturally oriented toward such values as unity and harmony — the kind of creative coexistence and autonomy that I have identified as central to a century of life,” believes Ikeda.
Women’s natural instinct to create happiness, joy, and unity can lead the world away from the philosophy of hate and usher in a more prosperous society, speakers said at the webinar titled ‘Towards 2030: The Power of Women to Build a Century of Life’.
“It is a no-brainer that gender equality brings opportunity and prosperity for all. Any plan to grow an economy is incomplete if we don’t include women in the mix and look for challenges that they face,” said Dr. Saundarya Rajesh, Founder-President, Avtar Group
“Women are more than 50% of India’s population. However, they contribute less than 15% to its GDP. They earn less than 25% of what their male counterparts do,” she added..I do see India Inc racing to balance the workplace gender ratio to create a more equal working environment,” she said.
Other speakers at the webinar reiterated the role women must play as peacebuilders. “In our work, we have seen how women can unleash their potential with a mere shift in how they define themselves. My hope is more and more of us to make that shift in perspective,” said Swati Apte, Founder-Director, The Arts Quotient.
Priya Naik, Founder and CEO, Samhita Social Ventures added, “Everyone benefits from gender equity! If women and girls are economically and socially empowered, they are able to make informed choices and decisions about their lives, which is critical to solving many of India’s critical development challenges in education, health, child marriage, nutrition, genderbased violence and livelihoods. Societies that value women are safer, healthier and prosper economically. Investing in gender equity and enabling the full empowerment of women and girls is the ‘silver bullet’ that India needs”, she said.
Rashi Ahuja, Director and Head of External Relations, Bharat Soka Gakkai, spoke about how the role of women today has changed tremendously. She added, “Women have been able to contribute immensely to society – whether in their capacity as a Homemaker, Doctor, CEO etc. The empowerment of women is resulting in visible transformation, and they are spearheading the creation of a just and equitable society.”
Vishesh Gupta, Chairperson of BSG, said that BSG’s activities in society to foster women’s leadership is rooted in the conviction that women have the innate power to guide humanity to peace.. “I firmly believe that women and men can together create an era in which all people are treasured and where the dignity of life is respected. This will be the ‘Century of Life’ where we all can enjoy the richness of human diversity,” Gupta said.