On the premises of the magnificent Abbey of Neumünster, the Zonta clubs of southern Belgium and Luxembourg hosted an academic session to celebrate the Centennial Anniversary of Zonta International on Friday, 25 October.
District 27’s Area 1 Director Monique Stephany welcomed the guests, which included: the Minister for Equality between Men and Women; the Minister for Development, Cooperation and Humanitarian Affairs; the Ambassador of the United States of America together with four other ambassadors, European and national Members of Parliament.
In a recorded message, Her Royal Highness the Grand Duchess of Luxembourg Maria Teresa expressed her congratulations for the Zonta International Centennial Anniversary and especially thanked the Zontians of Area 1 for their engagement toward the empowerment of women and their active support of and participation in the international forum Stand Speak Rise Up, which she set up last March.
Past Governor Florence Fischer-Herber gave a broad overview of Zonta International’s history, the engagement with UN partners, the educational programs, the international service and Zonta International Strategies to end Violence Against Women (ZISVAW) projects, the Foundation and the history of the district and area.
In a panel discussion, two Young Women in Public Affairs awardees and one Women in Technology laureate gave their opinions on the challenges encountered by young women in 2019 and their expectations for the future. Following the #MeToo movement, they strongly assume being feminists.
Taina Bofferding, Luxembourg Minister for Equality between Men and Women, emphasized during her keynote speech that since 1919, when women gained the right to vote in Luxembourg, remarkable progress and achievements have been accomplished in view of gender parity, but she noted that we still have a long way to go and full equality can only be successfully reached when working together with men.
The academic session was highlighted by interludes with music of Bach, Tchaikovsky, Strauss and Mozart interpreted by a trio of wonderful and inspiring ladies of the Groupe Organza. The young creative dancer and choreographer Noa Nies chose the theme following Emma Watson’s speech at the UN in 2014:
“I think it is right that I should be able to make decisions about my own body”
“If not me, who? If not now, when?”
The evening ended with a warm get together of Zontians their numerous friends.
The event was organized by the Zonta clubs of Luxembourg, Esch-sur-Alzette, Eisleck, Luxembourg-Multicultural, Mons and Saint-Hubert-Redouté.