Posts tagged with "International Women’s Day"

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Lucid Celebrates Women

In honor of International Women’s Day, meet the successful founders behind Lucid Communications’ incredible roster of women-led brands

This International Women’s Day (March 8th, 2021), Toronto/LA-based PR firm Lucid Communications is celebrating the victories and contributions of our incredible clients. We are proud to have women from all walks of life on our roster who continue to shape their respective industries, showing us time and time again how powerful women are.

Each one of our thought leaders is highly skilled and trained in their field. These women boast extensive knowledge and wisdom in areas such as mindfulness, movement, natural beauty, home decor & organization, and sustainable lifestyle. Today, we share their extraordinary journeys to success.

Check out the strong, inspirational, and intelligent women behind Mindful Collective Co (B Yoga & Halfmoon), Province Apothecary, Okoko Cosmetiques, Flax Sleep, Lorette Lingerie, NEAT Method Toronto, The Bare Home, and Pretty in the City.

Andrea Morris of Mindful Collective Co (parent company of B Yoga and Halfmoon)

As the Founder & CEO of Mindful Collective Co— the parent company of sister brands B Yoga and Halfmoon— Andrea Morris’ mission is simple: to support people everywhere in living their best and most balanced lives.

Morris’ passion for yoga began in Sydney, Australia, while she was completing a Masters Degree in International Business. She knew she would someday make yoga her career, but she wasn’t sure what that would look like. Fast-forward 9 years and Morris found herself employed at The Stewart Group, her family’s fifth-generation manufacturing and technology company. She was working with an innovative type of rubber and quickly realized that the material’s distinctive qualities—durability, sustainability, and a grippy surface— could make the perfect yoga mat.

After endlessly prototyping and fine-tuning The B MAT, B Yoga was born in 2014. Sparked by The B MAT’s success, B Yoga continued to grow beyond just mats, creating elevated, performance-driven essentials for all kinds of movement and meditation.

In spring 2018, Morris and B Yoga acquired Halfmoon, another female-founded, Canadian yoga and meditation brand. Where B Yoga speaks to the contemporary yogi, Halfmoon is rooted in tradition, making each brand a perfect complement for the other.

Morris currently resides in her hometown of Toronto, ON, with her husband, Fraser, and two daughters, Madison and Everly. As she helps B Yoga and Halfmoon grow across North America and internationally, she knows she’s fulfilling her vision of inspiring all people to live their yoga.

B Yoga’s products can be shopped online or purchased through their various retailers.

Halfmoon’s products can be shopped online or purchased through their various retailers.

Julie Clark of Province Apothecary

After struggling with allergies and eczema all her life, Julie Clark began crafting natural, organic beauty products out of her kitchen. Despite her busy schedule as a costume designer and stylist, Julie found herself drawn to holistic skincare, using her time off to experiment with oils, waxes, and herbs— all in pursuit of the perfect skincare regime. In 2010, Julie began studying Aromatherapy, Holistic Health, and Esthetics in Toronto. Here she formed the foundation of her skincare expertise, experimenting with raw materials and natural ingredients.

For Julie, natural beauty goes beyond simply organic ingredients; natural beauty means a pledge to helping clients feel good in their own skin. “I gather so much inspiration from my clients, the weather, and the seasons,” says Julie, of her individually-tailored approach to skincare. Her facial treatments often include hand-blended masks using local produce and seasonally appropriate, farmer-friendly ingredients. While PA has long outgrown the kitchen, Julie’s devotion to fresh, seasonal, and organic beauty continues. Now a certified holistic esthetician and aromatherapist, Julie remains committed to innovation, sustainability, and small-batch skincare of the highest quality.

Province Apothecary is available at 175+ retailers in Canada and the US, as well as online. They have been featured internationally in print and online by POOSH, Vogue, goop, Refinery 29, CBC, and more. They have also expanded their Holistic Skincare Clinic in Toronto, offering Custom Organic Facials and Full Brow + Lash Treatments. With a highly skilled team of experts and a stunning new space, PA’s clinic is a vestige of calm in the ever-hectic city.

Oyéta Kokoroko of Okoko Cosmétiques

Oyéta Kokoroko is an experienced cosmetic formulator, product designer, and creator of eco-luxury cosmetics from Montréal, Canada. She moved to Vancouver, British Columbia in 2016, where she founded her company Okoko Cosmétiques. Okoko is built on Oyéta’s passion for combining high-level formulations, luxurious textures, and delicate scents to beautify and rejuvenate any complexion.

Oyéta is inspired by the spectacular mountains, exquisite fauna, and extraordinary power of the Pacific Ocean, which together define the lush nature of the West Coast rainforest. Her product formulations also benefit from her multicultural heritage and sophisticated French-Canadian style. The result is Okoko Cosmétiques, a luxury skincare brand that creates sustainably-sourced, high-performance, and science-backed products.

Transparent labeling, ingredient purity, and environmental consciousness are at the core of Okoko’s mission. From sourcing to production, they invest in research and development to bring you products that are both sustainable and effective. Using only the purest botanical extracts and oils, many of which are sustainably wildcrafted, the Okoko range is rich in high-quality and precious ingredients that will work to transform your skin. No exaggerated claims or cheap fillers here!

While paving the way in green beauty, Oyéta has taken her years of knowledge and skills to launch OKOKO House Of Brands. This platform is dedicated to mentoring like-minded indie brands who are ready to take their business to the next level. To learn more about OKOKO house of brands, visit okokohouseofbrands.com.

Okoko Cosmétiques can be shopped online and shipped internationally, or purchased in person at any of their various stockists.

Anna Heyd, Oana Papuac, and Vivian McCormick of Flax Sleep

Originally in the fields of law and hospitality, these three passionate businesswomen made the switch to entrepreneurship in the fall of 2017 with the founding of Flax Sleep. Anna, Oana, and Vivian came together to share their appreciation of beautiful things, ethical business practice, and fantastic sleep. They saw a gap in the Canadian marketplace when it came to buying simple bedding online at accessible prices, and felt inspired to fill that void.

Quality materials, high production standards, and ethical manufacturing practices were their top priorities when they set out to find a factory with which to partner. Once they identified the perfect manufacturing partner, they traveled to Shenzhen to learn about the process of turning beautiful linen into the most amazing sheets, to see the quality of the working conditions for the craftsmen and women that are responsible for production, and to establish a long term partnership with their factory. From here, Flax Sleep was Born.

In addition to offering you luxurious linen bedding, the women behind Flax Sleep believe in providing #ASafePlacetoSleep to women and children in need. That’s why they are committed to donating part of their proceeds (and all returned goods) to Atira Women’s Resource Society. In doing so, they are reducing waste and providing essential products to members of their community that need it most. As ethical manufacturing is also a top priority, Flax Sleep actively partners with modern manufacturers to ensure clean and safe working conditions for all.

Laure Stromboni of Lorette Lingerie

Laure Stromboni is a Parisian designer and the creator of Lorette Lingerie. Founded in 2017, her Toronto-based intimates brand was created to empower women with the freedom to express themselves unapologetically. Their luxurious and small-batch intimates are inspired by Laure’s french heritage, blending contemporary cuts with unique embroidery techniques that weave a story into every garment. Offering a diverse range of bralettes, panties, bodysuits, camisoles, and more, Lorette invites women everywhere to revel in their unique feminine expression and self-confidence.

Lorette’s collections are designed in collaboration with female illustrators and graphic designers and are handmade locally by an all-female staff in Toronto. Each embroidery is thoughtfully chosen to represent symbols, concepts, and archetypes that resonate with women everywhere.

In addition to exceptional design, superior craftsmanship and environmental consciousness are central to Lorette’s ethos. Their hand-made garments are created using deluxe overstock material from Canadian and Parisian couture houses, ensuring superior quality without waste. By making the conscious decision not to outsource production or transport new materials, Lorette is able to offer a fair living wage to everyone involved in their garments’ development, all while reducing their carbon footprint.

Lorette Lingerie can be shopped online and shipped internationally, and local pick-ups are available for Toronto-based customers.

Jen Rowe of NEAT Method Toronto

NEAT Method Toronto is the organizing company that will transform your home or office from chaos to composed. Specializing in organizing, unpacking, and downsizing homes & offices across Toronto, they make the spaces you have functional for the life you live by focusing on creating uniquely personalized systems.

Jen Rowe, Owner of NEAT Method Toronto, offers an honest approach, a sharp eye for detail, and a personal sense of refined style. While Jen has spent the better part of her nearly 20-year career in corporate communications, she has always been a passionate organizer at heart. After becoming a parent to her now 5 and 7-year-old children, Jen began to dive deeper into the best ways to maintain a neat home— even during the most chaotic phases of life. She started to expertly maximize the space in her family’s East end home, making it highly efficient for their lifestyle. In 2019, she parlayed this skill set into a career with NEAT Method and now uses her extraordinary talents to help others live clutter-free.

Ashley James of the Bare Home

The Bare Home started as a passion project. Ashley remembers becoming very conscious of sustainable living during her time in Germany. She loved the simple things people were doing in their daily lives to be more environmentally conscious and quickly began to adopt this “new” way of life.

After 7 years, Ashley and her husband decided to move back to Canada with their young family. She knew Canada was going to be much different than what she had become accustomed to in Europe and was feeling inspired and excited to bring some of that lifestyle home with her. She had caught the entrepreneurial bug around that time and was actively looking to start her own business— but it had to be something that she could truly feel passionate and good about.

At first, the Bare Home was more than cleaning products. Ashley was offering a variety of fair trade foods and other zero-waste products. However, she quickly noticed that customers were most interested in the refilling options for her laundry and cleaning products. From here, the Bare Home was born.

The Bare Home is now Canada’s premier destination for sustainable, environmentally friendly, and beautifully-scented cleaning products. They are proud producers of eco-cleaners and natural soaps that are safe for you, your home, and the earth. The Bare Home’s products are made with only the highest quality organic essential oils, and feature unique at-home refill stations. Boasting a wide range of basic yet beautiful dish soaps, hand soaps, all-purpose cleaners, laundry essentials and more, The Bare Home provides clean convenience that you and your family can feel good about.

The Bare Home’s full range of eco-friendly cleaners can be shopped online here, and shipped to both the US and Canada. Be sure to use their store locator to check out their various North American stockists for in-person shopping!

Nathaly Nairn of Windfall Cider

Windfall Cider is Canada’s newest urban cidery based in Vancouver, BC. Created by Nathaly Nairn and her husband Jeff Nairn, Windfall is here to turn the world of cider on its head. They find the best BC apples, the purest juice, and experiment with old-world techniques to create a one-of-a-kind cider like you’ve never tasted before. Windfall stays true to their local roots, using only fruits and botanicals native to the Pacific Northwest. The result is a diverse roster of crisp, distinct, and playful ciders that you’ll want to drink year-round. Like a little sip of good fortune in every can.

Windfall was founded after a trip to Mexico City, where Nathaly and her husband fell in love with Spanish cider. After exploring cider-making as a hobby for several years, Nathaly and Jeff took the plunge and established their very own cidery, Windfall Cider. In an industry overrun with sweet and general ciders, Nathaly set out to create crisp, refreshing, and unique blends. After learning what she could from old-world methods passed down by generations of cider makers, Windfall experimented until their cider was just right— and entirely different than anything else in Canada.

Windfall’s bright and playful ciders can be shopped online and shipped to BC residents, or delivered across Vancouver,  or purchased at select restaurants and private liquor stores. 

Veronica Tran

Pretty in the City Founder, Veronica Tran, is one of the first estheticians in Toronto to train in the art of eyelash extensions in both Toronto and New York. She holds several certifications in various techniques, a diploma as a Skin Care Technician and Permanent Make-Up Technician, as well as several certificates for infection control. Attending workshops, seminars, and conferences on an annual basis, Veronica is always up to date with the newest innovations and industry standards. Her latest accomplishments include several master classes for Volume Eyelash Extensions and Microblading with well-regarded industry professionals such as Irina Levchuk, Daria Chuprys, and Branko Babic. Veronica is also one of the first in Canada to be certified with PhiBrows.

Veronica established Pretty in the City, Toronto’s most trusted lash and brow bar, in 2005. She believes that quality work takes time, and therefore, every appointment at PIC allows for individual customization, proper implementation of skilled techniques, and sanitation protocols. At Pretty in the City, Veronica ensures that customers experience unparalleled expertise and professionalism in a friendly and relaxed environment. It comes as no surprise that PIC has been named as one of the best places in Canada for microblading by Fashion Magazine online, one of the best places for microblading in Toronto by BlogTo, and one of the top salons for lash extensions in Toronto by Narcity Toronto.

Veronica’s work has been featured in many high profile publications including Flare, FASHION, Elle Canada, Elevate, and Best Health.

Protoje – Same So

“Same So,” the new single and video by Protoje, is the GRAMMY-nominated artist’s first solo release in over a year, out today, July 16th via In.Digg.Nation Collective/Six Course/RCA Records. Listen/Watch “Same So” HERE.

Protoje’s leading track, produced by Sean “Ziah” Roberts and himself, is an early look at his forthcoming major label debut album, which will be available for pre-order on August 6, 2020. Since earning a nomination from the Recording Academy for Best Reggae album in 2019, fans have eagerly awaited Protoje’s highly-anticipated follow-up to A Matter of Time.

Protoje’s new flirtatious anthem, “Same So,” is about the thrill of a new crush, the longing to express feelings and the hopes for reciprocation. Directed by JRDN MARS, the beautiful video is a backdrop for the sweet and innocent lyrics with a stylized montage of colorful images of nature and the promise of a new and shared love.

“I wrote this song just being in a situation and feeling ‘a type of way’ about someone – but because of the type of relationship, there are things I can’t do or say. However, at the same time, I’m hoping that she feels the same way for me regardless. This video was one of the easiest shoots I’ve ever been a part of. I honestly just did and followed everything Jrdn Mars asked of me because I trusted his vision. The lead actress Celene was a dream as well and it’s a different side and very original video especially in the Jamaican space,” Protoje says.

As one of the leaders of the “reggae revival” movement, according to VOGUE, Protoje continues to build his presence as a musical icon. Performing on stages worldwide to promote his previous releases, plus rocking his national TV debut on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon were milestones for the seasoned veteran artist. This year, Protoje elevated his influence by signing a major label deal with RCA Records in partnership with Six Course Records. In conjunction with the RCA alliance, Protoje brokered individual album deals for himself as well as his rising female artists Lila Iké and Sevana. Lila Iké rolled out her debut EP to critical acclaim, while fandom for Sevana is contagious with her new EP on the horizon. Protoje will round out the trifecta of releases with his next album, chock full of feel-good vibes slated for later this summer.

In tandem to this industry accomplishment, Protoje is making an impact in his own community, from Jamaica’s youngest GRAMMY winning star Koffee shouting him out as one of her influences in her breakthrough anthem “Toast” to collaborating with the island’s biggest names and brightest prospects. Last summer, he teamed up with Jesse Royal on “Lion Order.” Protoje traded verses with Agent Sasco (Assassin) and Lila Iké on his “Not Another Word,” a lyrical call-to-action to fix broken systems of poverty, climate change, and social injustice in the world. In Nov 2019, he also produced an all female compilation Rock & Groove featuring four emerging Jamaican artists (Lila Iké, Sevana, Naomi Cowan and Jaz Elise), which resulted in their stellar BBC 1xtra live performance featuring all the ladies on International Women’s Day, shot at Protoje’s studio headquarters The Habitat. The latest joint effort from Protoje is a reunion with long-time collaborator Chronixx for RCA labelmate Alicia Keys “Underdog” Remix .

Stay tuned for more announcements on Protoje’s forthcoming album.

Listen/Watch “Same So” HERE.

Follow Protoje: Instagram | Twitter | Facebook | YouTube

K-Syran performs

In K-Syran‘s Words:

What a week! From my shoot in a studio in London where I stayed 3 hours in a pool filming underwater shots in the beautiful Three Graces dresses, to flying to Malaga for my Manilva Pride gig.

Spain is beautiful with it’s gorgeous coast line and delicious food.
I arrived the day before so that I could get to enjoy swimming in the sea.
On the big day, Saturday, I was picked up by a lovely man who volunteered to help out. This is why I love performing for GayPride; it’s a celebration of love and everyone is so generous and helpful. The tech went brilliantly with super talented producer Dan Boots and team from Intimacy Records attending, checking sound and images. I didn’t get to meet my dancers but lucky to finally meet amazing Christian Lee Dun who organises Manilva Pride.

We were all picked up at around ten thirty, I was dolled up in my striking green K-Syran designer dress by renowned Zaid Farouki and jewlery by Esfir Jewels – I felt like a diva! There were thousands of people already attending cheering and having a wonderful time.

I had the best time ever on stage with them and the loving fun audience cheering us on. Such a thrill to perform my own songs live in front of an audience who are so warm and generous and to see them dancing to my tunes makes me feel that all the work I do is defiantly worth it!

About K-Syran

Having started her career on an exciting note by opening the UK Tour for the prominent Blue, K-Syran has since been receiving the love and praise of music connoisseurs across the globe. Releasing two albums (Smoke In My Veins and Dizzy), topping several billboard charts and evenhaving one of her singles being nominated as the anthem of International Women’s Day 2016, K-Syran’s journey continues to demonstrate an exciting path.

K-Syran follows up 2018’s monumental success with billboard charting singles, Shake that Booty and Dizzy, and her brand new offering,Carefree Careless.

Beyond her illustrious work in music, K-Syran is also debuting in her first feature film The Lady from The Sea. As the leading lady in this exciting new venture, K-Syran is demonstrating her dynamic versatility and ingenuous creativity as an artist.

To add to all these incredible feats, K-Syran will also be performing live at the ‘Puerto de la Duquesa’ in Manila on the 15th June 2019. Celebrating equality and dignity for all, this performance will add to K-Syran’s line-up of live performances in 2019.

Dedicated to creating great music and versatile performances, K-Syran is at the forefront of creating an unparalleled music experience.

For collaborative opportunities, please contact Manal at manal@theamanqiedit.com.

Holiday Destinations of Influential Women

8 Dream Holiday Destinations of Influential Women

Everybody needs to get away from time to time. And the rich and powerful are no exception! In fact, the stress and responsibility of holding an influential position and being constantly in the public eye can make the idea of a holiday even more appealing.

MyLateDeals has researched where the world’s most powerful women choose to go when they finally get a chance to let off some steam.

Queen Elizabeth II

You might think being the longest-reigning Queen of England would be an easy ride. But while Her Majesty may not have to worry about paying the bills each month, she has dealt admirably with personal trauma and national crises over the past seven decades – and remained adored by the national and international public the whole time.

Of course, no British royal is short of a holiday home or two. For Queen Elizabeth, 50,000 acres of moors, forests, and farmland at Balmoral Castle in Scotland provide both privacy and fresh air away from London life.

“I think Granny is the most happy there,” revealed Princess Eugenie a few years back. “I think she really, really loves the Highlands.”

Madonna

The Queen of Pop is the best selling female recording artist of all time and her influence on today’s music culture is inestimable. But rising to the top of the industry wasn’t easy – especially in the sexist atmosphere of the 1980s: “I’m tough, I’m ambitious and I know exactly what I want,” explains Madge. “If that makes me a bitch, okay.”

Madonna may be the archetypal urban woman, but when it’s time to get away nothing less than paradise will do. Soneva Fushi, an idyllic island in the Maldives, is the artist’s “definition of heaven – [a place for] riding bikes in the moonlight and watching movies under a starlit sky.”

With visitors able to reserve their own stretch of sun-baked sand far from the 24-hour news cycle, Soneva Fushi is a place where Madonna needn’t worry about reading, or becoming, hot gossip.

Oprah Winfrey

Talk show host, motivational speaker, philanthropist… president? Such are Oprah Winfrey’s levels of empathy and talent, it’s impossible to rule out quite what she’ll do next. And that’s just what you see on the surface: Winfrey’s business acumen is so sharp that they even teach college courses about it.

Like the Queen of England, Winfrey has an impressive property portfolio and holiday homes to spare. Her first choice destination is her ranch on Maui, Hawaii, where landscape and spirituality walk hand-in-hand: “The real substance and value of being in Hawaii is the unspoken “spirit” of the people and the surroundings,” she writes. “Hawaiians understand that the soul of the land is what matters.”

And what does a talk show host talk about on her time off? “We chat, laugh and rate the sunsets according to their magnificence.”

Pink

While her closest competitors embraced the hyper-sexualisation of early-noughties pop culture, Pink showed the world that it’s possible to stay true to who you are and still make a success of yourself. She has been a true ‘mainstream alternative’ in an age of mass production.

The singer and songwriter finds escape through a vastly different culture: that of the Indonesian island of Bali. She relaxes and has fun with her kids by attending cooking classes, chilling on the beach, and taking in traditional dance and music shows.

“Thank you to the people and the ocean and the energy of Bali,” Pink effuses on Instagram. “We love you.”

Beyoncé

They say the way to Carnegie hall is practice. For Beyoncé, building the stamina to blast stadium audiences with her formidable voice was apparently a matter of running around the block singing at the top of her voice by way of ‘working out’ in her youth. Her talent and hard work have won her 22 Grammy awards and a unique position in 21st-century western culture.

It’s Europe for Beyoncé and hubby Jay-Z when they want a break from the intensity of American living. The French Riviera (including Monaco, Cannes, and St. Tropez) may not be as remote as Bali or Soneva Fushi, but combining the deluxe privacy of a mega-yacht with the bustle and glamour of dining out along the Côte d’Azur seems to do it for the Knowleses.

Meghan Markle

Markle has brought a touch of reality to the royal family, and is becoming an important ambassador not just in diplomatic circles but between everyday people and the British elite. But even before she wooed Prince Harry, sixth in line to the throne, Markle was celebrated both for her acting and for her political activism.

So it’s no wonder her downtime with Harry is often spent in Africa, the continent where the couple pursue a great deal of charitable work. They keep things relatively real at the £580/night Mapula Lodge in Okavango Delta, Botswana, where thatched huts and outdoor showers overlook a stunning lagoon.

“I managed to persuade her to come and join me in Botswana,” said Harry of one of their early ‘dates.’ “We camped out with each other under the stars.”

Michelle Obama

‘First Lady’ was never a title that Michelle Obama was going to accept lightly. The Princeton and Harvard graduate worked as a lawyer and in prominent government positions before cutting back to raise her daughters and become an ambassador for human dignity and justice alongside her husband.

Obama’s holiday plans are as unpretentious as you would expect. Every year, she and her family arrive on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, where the Obamas cycle, play tennis, eat ice-cream, and spend quality time with their dogs, Sunny and Bo.

It’s more about wholesomeness than glamour – but you can be sure Obama returns to her daily routine refreshed and inspired.

Serena Williams

Some say Williams is the greatest female tennis player of all time. But the consensus errs towards her in fact being the greatest athlete of all time, regardless of gender. An astonishing 23 Grand Slam titles – including winning the Australian Open while two months pregnant – would be inspirational enough even if you didn’t consider the extent to which she’s set herself ahead of her rivals and the adversity she’s overcome to get there.

Romantic Rome is Williams’ destination of choice. She met her husband there while breakfasting with friends at the Cavalieri Hotel in 2015; he proposed to her on the same spot a year later.

As she told Traveller: “Rome is one of my favourite cities in the world! It’s such a magical place and I have so many wonderful memories there.”

Want to know which holiday destination is right for you? MyLateDeals has created  a quiz to determine which holiday and inspirational woman you have the most in common with, so prepare to find out.

Women Dominating the World of Travel

Badass Women Who Are Dominating the World of Adventure Travel

In honor of International Women’s Day, Friday March 8, 2019, these inspiring travel professionals are working to make outdoor travel a more balanced place for women around the world.

This Mar. 8, 2019 is International Women’s Day (IWD), and the theme is #BalanceforBetter, focusing on how a more gender-balanced world will create a better working environment for everyone. It couldn’t come at a better time; in the outdoor travel industry, women have been historically under-represented – particularly in leadership positions. According to The Adventure Travel Trade Association’s report “Out in Front: Tracking Women’s Leadership in Adventure Travel,” while women make up 60-70% of the travel industry, only 38% of board positions are held by females in the adventure sector, and there are significantly fewer female guides on average, especially in developing destinations.

However, women are beginning to break down the barriers of this male-dominated sector, and along with “The Rise of the Female Adventurer” and women’s-only travel providers comes a marked increase in women taking on more leadership roles, and challenging the status quo.  

Here are just a handful of driven, fearless women from around the world who are working every day to make their mark in adventure travel:

Payal Mehta

Expedition Leader – India, Nepal & Bhutan

Natural Habitat Adventures

Payal Mehta may have spent her childhood in urban Mumbai, but her lifelong love for the outdoors has led her to become a Nat Hab Expedition Leader, guiding travelers throughout the remote and wild areas of India, Nepal and Bhutan. Once a member of an elite training program for India safari guides, Payal started leading tours in India’s Kanha National Park, and is now a multi-disciplined wilderness specialist and trained mountaineer. As a Nat Hab guide, Payal interprets the nature and local culture she and her groups explore together, as well as being a translator, teacher and storyteller – all while ensuring the trip runs smoothly.

Badass Claim to Fame: “I was part of an all-women mountaineering expedition up the 6420-metre-high Mt. White Sail in the Himalayas. We ended up in a serious rescue situation on our way back when our guide suffered high altitude pulmonary edema. But we all made it back alive!”

Future Goals: “I’d love to have my own wildlife tourism project near a forest. One that is much more than a commercial outfit, that truly involves everyone in the local community, is a center for learning and is run with high standards of environmental consciousness.”

What IWD Means to Payal: “It’s saluting and celebrating all the women of the past who fought for women’s place in society, and because of whom I get to enjoy my life as it is today. It also brings a hope that the message will continue to spread and there will be further change in attitudes in the future.”

Maritza Chacacanta

Deputy Operations Manager – Treks, Inca Trail

Exodus Travels

Maritza Chacanta is a proud single mother and a former Inca Trail Guide who has worked her way up to become the Deputy Operations Manager for Exodus Travels. When Maritza was first told how challenging it was to become an Exodus guide (applicants have to take special training courses and be among the best guides in order to be hired), she became determined to secure the coveted role. After years of hard work and dedication, Maritza made good on her promise to herself – and is now not only leading Exodus Travels’ signature Inca treks, but managing the operations from start to finish while collaborating with porters, horse wranglers, and guides.

Badass Claim to Fame: “Being a single mom is one of the things I’m proudest of. Nowadays, women do not need a man to push ahead. To the single mothers out there: it’s important to know that you are not alone. You can have a successful career while being a successful mom.”

Future Goals: “To develop some projects related to the environment (reforestation, clean campaigns, etc.), and train our staff on how important it is to take care the environment – not only to benefit our treks, but to share the results with our communities.”

What IWD Means to Maritza: “It means rights and gender equality. [It’s the ability to] make your decisions – and be free from violence and discrimination.” 

Alice Goodridge

Adventure Coordinator – Scotland

Wilderness Scotland

Alice Goodridge keeps a sledgehammer in her car during the winter, so she can go swimming anytime, anywhere – no matter how frozen the lochs may be. That’s because as an extreme cold water swimmer, she isn’t afraid of a little physical discomfort – which is part of what made her want to become an Adventure Coordinator for Wilderness Scotland.

The company runs the type of trips Alice always wanted to experience herself, which means she now combines her love of the great outdoors with her expertise in organizing sustainability and adventure holidays.

Badass Claim to Fame: “My long distance and cold-water swims. I swam the 21-mile English Channel in 2012 and the length of the 22-mile Loch Lomond in 2018, which took place overnight from 6 p.m. – 8 a.m. the next morning. I also completed an Ice Mile last year, which was a mile in water less than 5 C° without a wetsuit.”

Future Goals: “I want to challenge myself in a discipline I am not so familiar with. I am currently working through my sea kayaking qualifications, with the hope of becoming a sea kayak guide in the future. Paddling or swimming… any excuse to spend more time on/in the water! “

What IWD Means to Alice: “There is still a lot of inequality in the outdoor activity sector and International Women’s Day mean taking a closer look and seeing what can be done about it. UK society is 51% female. Yet we know that there are less women and girls participating in the types of outdoor activities likely to lead to the interest, skill and motivation to pursue a career in this area. I would like to see greater equality in the outdoor activity sector and a higher percentage of female guides leading walking, biking and paddling trips in the UK.”

Laura Adams

Explorer, Consultant & Artist – BC, Canada

Adventure Canada

Laura Adams, an Adventure Canada expedition guide, is also a professional member of the Association of Canadian Mountain Guides and the Canadian Avalanche Association and was the fifth woman in Canada to become a fully certified winter Ski Guide. She also has a Masters degree in Leadership, with her research focused on decision making and risk management in mountain environments. In her spare time, Laura mentors people who aspire to a career in the professional mountain guiding industry, and coaches women in building leadership and backcountry skills.

Badass Claim to Fame: “In January 2019 I lead a small group expedition to Northern China; close to the borders of Kazakhstan, Russia and Mongolia to experience the ancient Tuvan mountain culture, and to ski-tour amongst the ‘Golden’ mountains of the region. We went during a time when China/Canada relations were tense, which added a great deal to the risk of traveling to this little-known part of the world. We all embraced the challenges with faith and endurance, and were rewarded with a remarkable experience of awe, cooperation, trust, and unity.”   

Future Goals: I am now focusing my career to increasing awareness, stewardship and leadership of these special places and cultures; through expeditions, my art and speaking/presentations.

What IWD Means to Laura: “International Women’s Day calls on us to give thanks and appreciation for the women in our lives and communities who live life with courage, integrity, and grace, who don’t just accept the way things are, and who make a genuine difference in the lives of themselves and others. It’s a day to inspire and cultivate qualities in emerging women around us who have big dreams and can make their ideas real.”

About Bannikin Travel & Tourism

Bannikin is a Toronto and Hong Kong-based travel and tourism consultancy dedicated to enhancing the businesses of niche-focused tour operators, destinations and lodging providers worldwide. Bannikin was built on a great respect for travel-minded visionaries who provide the utmost experiences in the wildest parts of the planet. With a combined 50+ years of experience, Bannikin knows what needs to come together to turn a travel company into the travel company, and a place into a destination.

To know more, visit Bannikin on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.

 

2019 Grammy Nominated Reggae Artist Etana Continues To Make History

To say 2018 was fruitful for Etana would be an understatement. The singer released her fifth album, Reggae Forever, toured relentlessly and capped the year with a Grammy Award nomination for Best Reggae Album.

According to Etana, “It’s been a year filled with hard work, determination  and triumph.”

Reggae Forever was released in March by Tad’s International Record. It went number one on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart and coincided with her extensive tour of the United States with J Boog and Jesse Royal.

Her show, which launched the album in South Florida in July, was particularly successful. It drew a strong crowd of faithful fans to Krave Restaurant and Lounge in Fort Lauderdale, who witnessed a powerful 90-minute performance.

What makes Reggae Forever’s appeal even more important for Etana is the fact that she was intimately involved in its production and marketing.

“The prestigious and powerful group of people on the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences acknowledged my work and thought it was worth being mentioned in the Best Reggae Album list. I’m excited because it’s my first independent project and in the Reggae category’ the doors are now open to females,” she said.

Reggae Forever is the first album by a female to be nominated for Best Reggae Album in 21 years. In the interim, pop music has seen women like Sheryl Crow, Beyonce, Rihanna, Alicia Keys, Amy Winehouse and Adele dominate the music industry.

With Reggae Forever released on International Women’s Day, Etana considers her nomination a significant breakthrough for ladies in the male-dominated Best Reggae Album category.

“All the other genres include so many women. I am happy to see the Reggae category inclusive of women in this time,” she said.

There will be no letup in the new year. Etana and her management will be intensifying her presence in the US and European market, especially now that she is a potential Grammy winner.

“I’ll be touring, recording, doing videos, releasing singles and doing spot dates. Tad’s Records, The Empire Agency and Freemind Music have so much already planned. I am grateful.”

FUSE TV FUTURE WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH

Women everywhere will rise to the top this March as Fuse celebrates Future Women’s History all month long. To mark National Women’s History Month, Fuse will honor today’s established and emerging women making waves in music, film, TV, digital, and other pop culture fields.

Coinciding with International Women’s Day, Fuse has announced the world broadcast premiere of She Started It, airing Thursday, March 8 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on FuseThe two-hour documentary provides a rare look into the ambitious and challenging lives of five diverse young women entrepreneurs in the tech field. Shot in Silicon Valley, New York, Vietnam, Mississippi, and France, She Started It follows these young women as they pitch their ideas, build teams, meet with investors, fail and find the inspiration to start again. Also featured in the film are women who have reached the top of their fields in tech, including several Entrepreneur Spotlights featuring women who have navigated and survived the challenges of Silicon Valley, and are inspiring other women along the way.

Also announced today: Girls in Tech and Girls Who Code, two technology, female-forward non-profits are uniting with the network as part of the premiere. Girls in Tech, a global organization focusing on the engagement, education and empowerment of girls and women who are passionate about technology, and Girls Who Code, which works to close the gender gap in technology, will both serve as a resource for the Fuse audience, and encourage more women to pursue careers in the tech field.

And Fuse is kicking it all off on Thursday, March 1 with a series of short form videos featuring Young M.A, Tinashe, MILCK, Jessie Reyez, Halsey, and Camila Cabello which will roll out during the month. Also airing on Thursday, March 8 at 10 a.m. is a Future Women’s History music block of fierce female artists including Dua Lipa, Sofi Tukker, and Halsey. The conversation will continue on Fuse.tv throughout the month, with editorial listicles highlighting up-and-coming talent who are making history now.

Learn more about Fuse programming by visiting http://www.fuse.tv/shows.

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