Million Women Rise 2009

Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Million Women Rise was a great experience. The weather was fine (if a bit chilly in the afternoon)! There was no 'trouble' at the rally! As with last year's march, it was so amazing to see women of all ages, races, nationalities, from all walks of life united, singing, smiling and cheering. Pregnant women, women with their kids, teenagers, right through to plenty of pensioners. I arrived very early (I left plenty of time to get there to allow for any transport issues but everything ran smoothly). It was obvious from the start that there would not be as many participants as last year which was kind of disappointing. I don't know if people were put off by the fact that this wasn't the first time it happened, or that the rally wasn't at Trafalgar Square. Maybe some people felt that they'd done it once, so didn't fancy going again. Despite this there was a huge crowd and I've read reports which estimate the number of women there at almost 5,000, so who knows?

I thought the new route for this year was a good idea - out of the square, on to Oxford Street and then down Regent Street and through Piccadilly Circus. It really impacted all the people out doing their shopping and there were loads of appreciative/interested passers-by. I was pleased to note that i didn't see anyone being abusive although there were plenty of people smirking, which you can always expect, sad as that is. We certainly made a lot of noise with our whistles, chants, singing, drumming and shouting and the atmosphere as we arrived at the rally was fantastic.

Despite the cold I stayed to listen to some really inspiring speakers. Some of the stories they told were horrifying but this just emphasised what we marched for, what we were shouting about. At a time when shocking research about peoples' attitudes towards violence against women has been all over the news, the speeches gave everyone a lot to think about. Women from all over the world spoke, gave support and sent their messages for others to read out. The organisers and stewards did a brilliant job and deserve a lot of credit.

There are some great photos (much better than mine!) up at The F Word Flickr pool. Other write-ups of the day can be found here:

Well, I'll Go To The Foot Of My Stairs
Uplift Magazine
Laura Kidd


Nadoone said...

hey hannah, you rule x

Hannah said...

Aww thanks :) I will start updating this thing again soon, i promise! x


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