March 08, 2012 03:15 PM
By Lisa Stone, Co-Founder, BlogHer
Today, Citi colleagues in more than 50 countries are participating in a company-wide global commemoration of International Women's Day (IWD), an important celebration of the economic, political and social achievements of women worldwide. IWD has been observed since the early 1900s and in 1977 the United Nations General Assembly designated March 8 as International Women's Day.
"Citi's global celebration of International Women's Day is a recognition of the vital contributions of women worldwide and an opportunity to reinforce our commitment to support female colleagues and clients on their journey from ambition to achievement," said Citi CEO Vikram Pandit. "We value the leadership and contributions of women throughout our company, and are equally proud to serve female clients around the world as they start and grow businesses, build assets, and secure their financial futures."
To underscore the importance of women to Citi's success, Citi is hosting nearly 100 programs in more than 80 cities around the world, including a 24-hour, round-the-clock series of events taking place every hour today beginning in Seoul and Sydney and concluding in Mexico City, New York City, and San Jose, Costa Rica. Citi's IWD celebrations will comprise a global roster of diverse and enriching local activity, connecting women from all around the world at events ranging from business conferences and networking events to local women's craft markets, theatrical performances and more.
In connection with IWD, the Citi Foundation will be at the United Nations to announce its support for Calvert Foundation's new Women INvesting in Women INitiative (WIN-WIN)™, an effort to invest at least $20 million in high-impact organizations and projects worldwide that create opportunities for women lacking access to traditional credit and funding sources. The funding will make it possible for women borrowers to build small businesses, improve their living conditions, and invest in education and childcare in order to build more stable and prosperous futures.
Citi, which recognizes diversity as a competitive advantage and business imperative, has been recognized for its comprehensive diversity and employee benefit programs that foster professional advancement and offer flextime hours, telecommuting, paid maternity leave and employee assistance programs. Citi has more than 142,000 female employees located in more than 130 countries, 55 women's groups globally, and 61 employee networks and affinity groups in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and the Republic of Ireland, including networks focused on heritage (African, Asian, Hispanic, Native American), LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender), military veterans, people with disabilities, women and working parents.