March is a time of remembrance, learning and respect for the women who paved the way and who embrace female nature. Celebrating Women's History Month helps honor women past, present and future that have and will shape the United States.

Getting the government to recognize an entire month dedicated to a marginalized group was quite the task, but it was not impossible due to the efforts of strong women. Originally beginning as Women's History Week, Women's History Month was officially declared in 1987 and has been recognized by the U.S. government since 1995. 

Women have been pioneers throughout the history of the U.S. For example, Sojourner Truth led conversations about abolishing slavery and establishing women's rights. Another example is Helen Keller, who fought for social reform and the rights of disabled persons. Furthermore, Amelia Earhart was the first woman pilot to fly solo across the Atlantic. America has historically been filled with women wanting to change history.

ways to honor women's history month

Illustration of four profiles side by side

These women are just a few examples of the many women worth celebrating during Women's History Month. While this celebration is an American tradition and official holiday, it is equally important to honor and represent the women who have made history internationally.

For instance, Frida Kahlo changed the representation of women in the art world by portraying herself as vulnerable yet strong and capable despite adversity. Greta Thunberg continues to advocate for the Earth and bring attention to environmental issues. Malala Yousafzai speaks out for girls' rights to education across the globe. 

To give these women the respect and honor that they deserve, we must be intentional in our actions during the month. 

One thing we can do is watch films filled with female empowerment, like "Hidden Figures," "On the Basis of Sex" and "Mulan," which can help us to understand intersectional groups and their experiences. 

Books like "Difficult Women: An Imperfect History of Feminism" by Helen Lewis, "The Women Who Make History Collection: Women in Science, Women in Sports, Women in Art" by Rachel Ignotofsky and "The Radium Girls" by Kate Moore all highlight the accomplishments of women past and present and make for a great educational experience.

Additionally, it is possible to honor women today by shopping at female-owned businesses in Charlotte like Girl TribeEast 8th Vintage and Good Postage.

Eating at women-owned restaurants and bakeries is also a great way to support women during March. Some Charlotte restaurants include Papi's Puerto Rican CuisineJazzy Cheesecakes and The Dumpling Lady.

All of these activities can be done by any race, gender or age group, which is important because this month is inclusive of everyone celebrating women for their contributions to history. Take some time this March and celebrate the women that make the world go round.