On Sunday, March 8, 2015, individuals and organizations throughout the world celebrated International Women’s Day (IWD), an annual event held to mark the social, economic and political achievements of women. Each year, women share personal stories and celebrate achievements with special events and campaigns. This year, UN Women celebrated IWD with the theme of “Empowering Women – Empowering Humanity: Picture It!”. This campaign envisioned a world where each woman and girl can exercise her choices, such as participating in politics, getting an education, having an income, and living in societies free from violence and discrimination. As part of the celebrations, the UN highlighted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, a historic roadmap signed by 189 governments 20 years ago that set the agenda for realizing women’s rights.
This emphasis on the various social factors that affect women’s life experiences are also pertinent to their mental health. Social determinants of health such as income, education and employment status have also been found to put women at greater risk of poor mental health than men. For example, in some communities women have more caregiving responsibilities and higher rates of poverty, which cause significant strain on their mental health. In Ontario, women are twice as likely to have depression than men, and are at greater risk of mood and anxiety disorders.
To help raise awareness about the ways in which women experience mental health problems differently from men, CMHA Ontario created the following infographic to share. Click on the image below to download and share.
To learn more about International Women’s Day, visit the UN Women website.