Four Senior Student leaders had the opportunity to attend the Suffrage 125 Launch on Wednesday 7 March and meet some of New Zealand’s most influential women as part of International Women’s Day.
Head Prefect Tiuana-Marie Aiono, Deputy Head Prefect Mia Uluilelata and Prefects Charlotte Barber and Greta Brown attended the event at Government House.
After the event Tiuana-Marie and Mia joined over 100 other Queen Margaret College students at a special screening of the documentary film, “My Year with Helen”, followed by a Q & A session with Helen Clark.
At the Suffrage 125 Launch the Prefects had the opportunity to hear from Governor-General Dame Patsy Reddy,
Minister for Women Julie Anne Genter and 2017 Young New Zealander of the Year Rez Gardi.
They also met role models Helen Clark, Hilary Barry and Rachel Hunter.
Tiuana-Marie says being in the presence of these women was “overwhelming”.
“It was humbling to see Helen Clark as she is a leader who has done so much for New Zealand and for the United Nations. She is living proof that women are capable of achieving great things through hard work and dedication,” she says.
One of Tiuana-Marie’s highlights was listening to Rez Gardi.
“Seeing such a young woman with huge goals and determination to fight for what she believed in sets a great example for girls all over New Zealand.”
Greta says her favourite woman to meet was Old Girl and television presenter, Hilary Barry (nee Pankhurst, 1987).
“She was extremely interested in the school and what we were doing. She has achieved some incredible things throughout her career and her life and it was fascinating to hear her views and opinions on Suffrage 125.”
Greta says the event reminded her of the importance of the power and freedom women in New Zealand have and have fought hard for.
“Suffrage 125 and International Women’s Day highlight the struggle that women of that era had and the little opportunities they had compared to men. The cause is close to home because we have so many opportunities at QMC and around New Zealand that women didn’t have 125 years ago.”
“Without the efforts of the suffragettes New Zealand would be a very different place. For me International Women’s Day is a day to appreciate the strength and power of women and the amazing and inspiring women in my life like my mum, my aunties and my nanas,” Tiuana-Marie adds.