International Women's Day on March 8 is a global celebration of the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women.
Each year a different theme is adopted for the day, and this year's theme #EmbraceEquity asks everybody to imagine a gender equal world, free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination, where differences are valued and celebrated.
There are a number of events taking place in the Illawarra this year to mark International Women's Day, from the annual luncheon at WIN Entertainment Centre, to performances by women and even a mass meditation and Tai Chi event.
The International Women's Day Illawarra Luncheon is one of the most sought-after events on the IWD calendar.
The annual event raises money for charity and will be held at WIN Entertainment Centre, Wollongong, on Friday, March 3, from 11.30am.
It will celebrate the International Women's Day theme #EmbraceEquality, which encourages everyone to challenge gender stereotypes, call out discrimination, draw attention to bias and seek out inclusion.
Organisers say the "EmbraceEquity" theme means to seek out difference as a necessary and positive element of life.
Tickets are $153, which includes a three-course lunch and drinks package, and are available here.
The Servo Truck Food Bar at Port Kembla will host the She'll Be Right International Women's Day Celebration on Friday, March 3.
Cocoa & Butter is hosting the night, which will feature 15 fabulous women across all genres of entertainment, including comedy and music.
Emma Malik and her professional fur babies will host, while The Girls and Theo & Bel will perform.
Mae de la Rue will stun in a burlesque show and there will be a spoken word performance by Adara Enthaler.
The Golden Gaytimes will provide circus fun while Di Barkas, Dee Milenkovic, Malika, Andy High and Diana McLaren will supply the laughs.
Doors open at 5pm before the performances begin at 7pm.
Tickets are $20 and are available here.
Nan Tien Temple will celebrate International Women's Day with a mass meditation charity fundraiser from 9.30am-11.30am on Sunday, March 5, to help visitors achieve "the collective benefit of mindfulness and inner peace".
The temple's nuns are hoping to enter the record books for staging the Illawarra's largest meditation and Tai Chi event.
Money raised will go to Supported Accommodation and Homelessness Services Shoalhaven Illawarra (SAHSSI).
The day will start with registrations, followed by guided Tai Chi and meditation sessions, a blessing for women and a talk with a resident nun.
Guided tours of Australia's largest temple will also take place.
Tickets are $20 and must be booked here.
Celebrate women, food and culture at the Illawarra Women's Day of Dance + Culture 2023 at Edmund Rice College, West Wollongong, on Sunday, March 5 from noon-3pm.
The event has been organised by Healthy Cities Illawarra, Catholic Diocese of Wollongong, Catholic Women's League, Edmund Rice College & SCARF Refugee Support to celebrate NSW Women's Week and the collective values of diversity, equity and inclusivity.
A panel of guest speakers will offer inspiring stories as you share delicious food and experience traditional dance and music from different cultures.
Tickets start from $5. More information/bookings here.
Vivid Palate, an International Women's Day gig, will be held at La La La's Wollongong on Wednesday, March 8, from 7pm-11pm.
Featuring a stellar line up of female acts, the event will also raise funds for SAHSSI, which provides crisis accommodation and support services to vulnerable women and families in Wollongong.
There will be performances by Edith, Classic and Awa Mbaye.
Tickets are $15. More information/tickets here.
Award-winning theatre company Rising Arts Productions will celebrate International Women's Day with Plays By Her Rules: A Women Of Wollongong Short Play Exhibition.
The event, at Side Door Theatre, Wollongong, on Friday, March 10, from 7pm-10pm, will present the work of eight female-identifying writers from the area.
Each writer was given just weeks to create an original short play with a twist: They must also devise a rule for the exhibitions 'rulebook' - a list of prompts, guidelines and restrictions that must feature in each play.
The end result is an anthology of short plays that explores and tests the imagination of the writers and audiences alike.
The works will include What If Love Attacks? by Kylie Baxter; Featherfall by Kate Grimwood; Courlo by Claire Honeywood; Cockroaches by Sarah Hurnall; Rags to Riches by Tilly Kidd; A Tale of Love and Woe by Michelle Rakos; Forgotten Fiction by Kirsten Tidbury; and Lava and Her Mother by Tegan Ware.
Tickets are $21. More information/bookings here.
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