International Women's Day is a significant day in the global calendar when the world celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. A day that also crucially calls for the acceleration of gender parity.

The theme of this year’s International Women's Day (IWD) on 8th March was '#Choose To Challenge': the idea that a challenged world is an alert world and individually, we're all responsible for our own thoughts and actions. After all, from challenge comes change.

Once again this year, WorldRemit wholeheartedly embraced IWD and its theme. Women are key to the flow of money transfer around the world; globally, they represent approximately half of all remittance senders. In fact, over the past eleven years, the proportion of our customers has grown by 19% —today 42% of our customers are female — compared to just 23% in 2010.

We believe that a woman's ability to follow her ambitions requires a huge amount of courage and positivity. And so, we help our customers — some of whom are female entrepreneurs — across the world support their families and friends financially, by providing a variety of ways to send money via bank transfer, cash pickup and mobile money.

Meet Mayvonne Morales -not afraid to '#Choose To Challenge'

Out of the estimated 2.2 million* Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs), 56% are female, and they contribute greatly to the over USD 33 billion of international remittances sent to the Philippines every year. Mayvonne Morales, a Las Vegas-based WorldRemit customer, is one such lady - someone who’s unafraid to '#Choose To Challenge' and bring about change for the better in her country of birth.

Mayvonne was one of the lucky winners of our Christmas Bigasan Pangkabuhayan Package Raffle In 2020. The competition gave our customers the chance to win a business for the budding entrepreneurs in their Filipino families; a business that in some cases could lift them, their family and friends out of poverty.

Mayvonne only created her WorldRemit account at the beginning of 2020 to send money to a friend whose mother had medical expenses. When sending the money she had the opportunity to enter our competition, which she did but promptly forgot about - until that is, her name was drawn.

“Winning WorldRemit’s Pangkabuhayan package was really the most precious Christmas gift for me as it will enable me to touch more lives in my own little way,”

Mayvonne has always worked hard to give something back to the Philippines. She decided to use her pension to fund her community outreach programs there. She also plans to use any profits from her bigasan business to further expand her relief efforts - such as feeding programs for children and supporting a school in a remote area in the northern part of Cebu.

“I am so glad to have found WorldRemit. I have been using their services since it’s fast and convenient. Now in return, they're helping me to reach even more people through my personal mission and thanks to earnings from this bigasan package.”

WorldRemit’s inspirational women…& what #ChooseToChallenge means to them

In celebration of some of our own WorldRemit women who challenge the status quo every day, we asked two of them what #ChooseToChallenge means to them.

Tsai Lim

Head of Customer Service - Philippines

“#ChooseToChallenge means we can all choose to seek out and celebrate women’s achievements. We choose to be responsible for our own thoughts and actions – all day and every day!”

Why is diversity important in the workplace?

“Diversity in the workplace is important because it leads to a higher employee engagement; when employees feel included – they are more engaged! It gives us different perspectives; it encourages creativity when you put people together with diverse backgrounds; it aids in problem-solving when you get diverse experiences and views which will help in making better decisions.

What's your biggest achievement to date?

“Raising my son as a single mom has been my greatest achievement and I am proud that I am able to raise him by supporting the things he is passionate about in life. Plus, one of the biggest achievements in my career is keeping and maintaining a highly engaged team!”

Cecilia Mourain

VP Partnerships & Pricing

#ChooseToChallenge is a reminder to keep thinking critically and not settle for the status quo (in any situation). The journey towards change starts with making a choice - one that requires courage, confidence and caring.

Why is diversity important in the workplace?

“I can't think of anything worse than spending my days with people who think and act like me. The multicultural nature of our business, colleagues and customers, is one of the main reasons I chose to join WorldRemit.”

What's your biggest achievement to date?

“Summiting one of the highest peaks in Colombia (Nevado del Tolima 5,215m) with no prior experience and limited training. I learnt to enjoy the journey with all the good and bad moments it brings. The view from the top itself was pretty disappointing (fog mainly).”

The question is...

...what ''#ChooseToChallenge'' means to you. We’d love to hear from you - please tell us that you think on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

*The Philippine Statistics Authority’s latest survey