Kensington woman Kira Stepanoff-Dargery marks International Women’s Day on 8th March by ‘walking in the shoes’ of women in developing countries who have to walk miles with heavy loads every day to survive.
Kira, of Vicarage Court, signed up to leading poverty charity CARE International’s ‘Walk in her shoes’ initiative, supported by the Co-operative Membership, and will walk 10,000 steps (around 5 miles) a day for one week while raising vital funds to help those living in poverty.
Women in some developing countries carry an average load of 20 kg at a time in water and firewood– the equivalent to the UK’s average luggage allowance. Collecting water, firewood and other basic necessities are responsibilities that usually fall upon women and girls in the developing world. This leaves little time to attend school, access health services or earn money to support their families.
Kira said: “I have been lucky and privileged enough to travel around the world, and I have witnessed poverty across the globe. My experiences have compelled me to support causes aimed at helping children and women, and increasing family income in impoverished nations. Countries cannot progress when too much of their population is looking for food just to live to the next day.”
CARE International’s Head of Challenge, Neil Munro, said: “Poverty is keeping women and girls from fulfilling their potential. Tasks which take seconds in the UK can mean backbreaking work in poor communities and much of this responsibility is borne by women and girls. Tasks which keep girls from attending school and women from paid work come at a high cost, trapping generation after generation in a cycle of poverty. We’re grateful to Kira for her support.”
Kira joins hundreds of CARE supporters from around the world who will all be walking for CARE this March. She would like to encourage women from Kensington and Chelsea to take part: “I think ‘Walking in her shoes’ will help us experience, even if only for a week, one of the hardships that woman face in impoverished countries. It will provide a better understanding of their circumstances and hopefully create more of a drive to help. Exercise is good for your health and well-being regardless. But also do it to help those less fortunate. I hope that many readers will get involved.”
About CARE International
CARE is one of the world’s leading aid agencies, fighting poverty and injustice in 87 countries around the world and helping some of the world’s poorest people find routes out of poverty. CARE’s mission is to create lasting change in poor communities and put money where it is needed most: 94 pence in every pound goes towards our poverty fighting programmes. That’s one of the highest rates among all the UK aid agencies. Taking part in sponsored events like this charity walk is just one of the ways that CARE raises these vital funds.
About the Co-operative
The Co-operative Group is the UK’s largest mutual business, owned not by private shareholders but by almost six million consumers. The Co-operative is doing more than ever to help tackle global poverty. Through co-operative support, ethical trade, ethical finance and campaigning, their work has benefited millions of people across the developing world. To learn more about becoming a member and helping to ensure lasting change, please visitwww.co-operative.coop/membership