The female employees across all departments and levels, proudly clad in pink, got together to celebrate each other in battling and persevering through new challenges this past year. The annual International Women’s Day is an important organisational observation for the premier Malaysian venue as a reflection of its commitment to equality and inclusivity in all of its policies, initiatives and programmes.
The Centre’s Director of Human Resources, Muhammad Vickneswaran shared that, “On behalf of the Centre’s team, I would like to wish all women Happy International Women’s Day. We believe an inclusive and diverse workplace environment is essential to our success and this is why we have great gender balance in our organisation. Currently, 55% of the Centre’s leadership and executive positions are held by females though they only make up about 40% of our total workforce, being in an industry that is often perceived as male-dominated.”
With this year’s theme for International Women’s Day being Women in Leadership: Achieving an Equal Future in a Covid-19 world, the Centre reached out to its staff, stakeholders and partners to understand the new challenges women have had to face due to the Covid-19 pandemic and how they have been demonstrating leadership in their community in battling these.
The Centre’s Director of Global Business Development & Marketing, Angeline van den Broecke said that, “It is very important for women in our industry to have visible role models that they can emulate. Actively demonstrating an increase in diversity and inclusivity in the workforce has a powerful impact on transforming organisational culture and advancing women into deserved leadership roles.”
Datuk Dr. Raj Abdul Karim, President, Malaysian Council for Child Welfare, shared that, “When there are changes in the society on a global scale as in times of Covid-19, women take the lead in helping the family to adjust to new realities and challenges and being the primary caregiver of children and elderly. In our organisation, this past year, due to movement control orders, we had to find effective ways to continue our engagement and interface with refugee children and families. Our caseworkers, mostly women from the community, have all risen to the occasion, they were provided with the necessary tools and equipment such as mobile phones and credit charges to ensure continued communication with regards to the welfare and well-being of the refugee women, children and families.”
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released a study in 2020 stating that 70% of the healthcare workforce are made up of women and that women carry out far more care work than men, putting them at a greater risk of infection, and at the same time having to shoulder much of the burden at home, due to school and child care facility closures, reduced or loss of income, increased risk of violence or exploitation during crisis and quarantine.