6 Empowering Women on International Women’s Day

In continuation of our International Women’s Day celebration, we are showcasing another group of noteworthy womxn. Encompassing the worlds of fashion, organic skincare, viticulture, body positivity, and cannabis, each individual has risen to prominence while encouraging others to follow their passions without regret. Read on to learn what this particular day means to them.

Britt Rawlinson, Owner of VSP Consignment

Photographed by Marlowe Granados.

“As a business owner, I am so privileged to spend my days alongside extraordinary women creating new and exciting initiatives based in and around sustainable fashion. I believe Women’s Day is a time to reflect on our collective achievements, while also thinking about how we can push forward to achieve gender parity across industries. Being a mother of two boys, I think about the best ways to instill these kinds of messages, and what kind of moves we can make to improve women’s health and access to childcare at a government level. I like to amplify the non-profits we work with at VSP, such as New Circles, which was just selected for a federal initiative that focuses on empowering visible minority newcomer women to enter the workforce, as well as local organizations like Sistering. On Women’s Day, it’s always good to remember that the biggest impact can often be made close to home.”

Temi Shobowale, Founder of Essentials by Temi

“International Women’s Day for me is about honouring my ancestors. I do so by honouring their struggles and achievements through the generations. As a Nigerian woman, I was taught the importance of sisterhood and supporting other women in my community. I am hopeful that one day our daughters can live peacefully in a world of heightened gender awareness and equality. This is achievable through the continuation of global solidarity for the women’s movement.”

Lucy Beall-Lott, Activist and academic

Photographed by Samantha Chinomona.

“International Woman’s Day is when I reflect on the women who made me who I am today. I like to appreciate my mother, who would not allow my youth to be defined by my condition; my grandmother, who instilled inside me a love for femininity; my sister, who gave me an appreciation for the arts; my professors, who have nurtured my love of learning, and all of the women who helped raise me. I also like to reflect on myself and the hard work I have put into everything I do. Being a woman, for me, means to understand my own power—every day I am learning something more about what that means.”

Nicole Campbell, Co-Founder Grape Witches, Grape Witch Imports 

Photographed by Jenalle Los.

“We are endlessly grateful for the work women before us have done to allow us to be leaders, but the more we learn and educate ourselves, the more we see the huge amount of work we must continue to do individually and as a society to unlearn patriarchal and systemic barriers women—especially women of colour—face every day. As leaders with a ton of privilege, it’s our responsibility to keep doing this work and lift up every woman who doesn’t get the same shot we do. This is a daily practice.”

Krysta Oben, Co-Founder Grape Witches, Paris Paris

Photographed by Jenalle Los.

“International Women’s Day (and every day) is a time to remember that there is still a gaping wage gap, that women are still at a higher risk of domestic violence, and that there are thousands of missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada. Let’s celebrate the contributions women have made to society, but also recognize that until there is equality for every woman regardless of race and sexual orientation, we have far to go.”

Mimi Lam, CEO/Founder Superette

Photographed by Wade Mui.

“At Superette, we do our best to lift womxn up. That means putting more womxn in management positions during our growth stage, hiring more womxn of colour, and generally empowering any womxn who comes in contact with our organization. To me, International Women’s Day means banding together to become a collective force. It’s a day of ‘womxn supporting womxn,’ even if we’re not from the same political or social background. It’s also a day for us to celebrate our accomplishments and pat each other on the back.”