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International Women’s Day

Dear Metro Vancouver, 

I have the privilege to spend my days, and sometimes evenings and weekends, working with a small staff and hundreds of devoted volunteers to combat economic inequity in our community.

For those of us working at Dress for Success Vancouver, every day is International Women’s Day. But for everyone else we know that it is only one day – March 8th. The United Nations’ theme for this International Women’s Day is #EmbraceEquity. Which got me thinking…

….What does it cost to embrace equity? To lift unemployed and underemployed women into good jobs, personal success and financial independence? 

In 2022, it cost $176 for Dress for Success Vancouver to provide one service touch point for an underemployed or unemployed client and we provided over 4,450 of them. 

And, in 2022 women who found employment or better employment thanks to our programs collectively earned $9.8 million.

That is a 11,449% return on investment for the donations made to support Dress for Success Vancouver! 

Now, consider what does economic inequity cost our community? In Metro Vancouver:  

  • Over 375,000 women are working and earning less than a living wage
  • Over 60,000 women unemployed and looking for work

If all women who wanted to be fully included in the economy were earning at least a living wage, that would total and increase to just over $21 billion in wages added annually to the local economy. 

Currently, Dress for Success Vancouver has the capacity to serve just 0.5% of these women as clients. As a charity, we rely on donations to help us both continue to lift women facing unemployment and underemployment into sustainable livelihoods and to expand our much needed service capacity. 

So today, I’m asking you to celebrate International Women’s day but helping us help as many women as possible escape economic inequity. 

This International Women’s Day – Embrace Equity, Embrace a Resilient Economy, Embrace the Success of all Women and donate to Dress for Success Vancouver. You can know that your gift will have a stunning return on investment that will benefit women and our whole economy. 

It isn’t just a good thing to do, it is the smart thing to do. 

In kindness, gratitude and the pursuit of equity, 

Executive Director, Dress for Success Vancouver

There are so many ways to celebrate International Women’s Day and support Dress for Success Vancouver:

  • TELUS Health for Good™ has partnered with Dress for Success Vancouver to provide our clients with access to free virtual counselling appointments through TELUS Health MyCare™. To access this service please email us today: tasneem@dfsvacouver.org.
  • Talbots has partnered with Dress for Success across Canada and the USA partnership to introduce the Butterfly Charming Cardigan, symbolizing hope and transformation. 30% of net proceeds directly benefits Dress for Success to help women transform their lives at work and beyond. Learn more.
  • Michael Hill is partnering with Dress for Success to support our mission of empowering women! For every purchase of their $25 cultured freshwater pearl stud earrings in sterling silver Michael Hill will donate $15 to Dress for Success in Canada. Purchase your pair at any Michael Hill store, or online here.
  • Marquis Wine Cellars is featuring BC wines with female owners, operators and winemakers and donating $2 per featured bottle to Dress for Success Vancouver, and $1 for all other BC wines. See the wine list and buy a bottle today.
  • Jenn Fontaine Photography is launching the 3rd annual 40 Over 40 Project on March 15, 2023. The 40 Over 40 Project is about empowering women in their 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and beyond. $50 from each session will be donated directly to Dress for Success Vancouver, totalling $2000 at the end of the project. Apply today.
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