United Way of Southeast Louisiana challenges you to fight gender bias through mentorship
The power of women is boundless, and when people come together to connect with women and girls, powerful relationships are made. Here are four ways you can benefit from the life-changing impacts of mentorship.
International Women's Day, March 8, is a global movement to honor women's social, economic, cultural, and political achievements. This year IWD and United Way of Southeast Louisiana's Women United are spreading awareness of the powerful impact mentoring creates and how it can challenge gender bias for women and girls.
We know the power of women is boundless, and when people come together to connect with women and girls, powerful relationships are made. Here are four ways you can benefit from the life-changing impacts of mentorship.
1. Increase your understanding of the bigger picture.
When you mentor a young woman or girl, you take a big step in helping another human. But you also are increasing your awareness and understanding of the bigger picture of gender bias in our world. A worrying 38% of companies don't have any activities in place to develop women leaders. Women United can help you become a leader and create leaders in mentees.
2. Mentoring can help advance your career.
Whether you are the mentor or the mentee, this relationship will take your career further. Mentoring in the workplace can provide opportunities for networking and broadening perspectives of a company's business. It can also offer opportunities for women who want to join the upper management of their organization.
3. Honor women who challenge inequity to create change.
Mentors and mentees can be of any age or stage in life. But if you are thinking of mentoring a young woman or girl, be aware of the possible benefits. For example, youth with mentors have higher self-esteem, motivation in school and make better life choices. Imagine what women and girls could achieve by fighting the ways gender bias hurts self-esteem. Women United supports programs that provide opportunities to introduce mentoring into young women's lives.
4. Support a positive cause and benefit from positive feelings.
A celebration of International Women's Day naturally focuses on women and girls, but men can be involved too. Invite the men in your life to join the fight in challenging gender inequity in our world.
I have had great mentors throughout my career, both men and women, who have taught me women can do anything they set their minds to, whether that is being the CEO of a Fortune 500 company or running their own business. Young girls especially need a mentor as generally they are left far behind when it comes to job opportunities and professional growth. Investing in others, especially women and girls, is key in lifting our communities from our societal ills.
Mentors play an important role in challenging gender inequity and bias. Through posting on social media, connecting with their community, and calling out inequality, they become dynamic role models for their mentees. From the playground to the workplace, mentees of all ages become more successful, confident, and empowered.
So join Women United in supporting women and girls through mentorship and other vital programs. With your help, women and men of all backgrounds can raise awareness in our global community to address gender bias. When we work together, all people can thrive.
Dr. Toya Barnes-Teamer
Women United Chairwoman