Celebrating International Women’s Day 2020

Brendan Stone and Katherine Linehan

This Sunday is International Women’s Day 2020 (IWD). To mark this important day, we’re starting a conversation about equality in relation to health and wellbeing, aiming to level the playing field for women experiencing the menopause and for all staff with caring responsibilities.

These are two areas which ranked highly amongst your top ideas on Ideascale during recent discussions about a new vision for the University. Read on to find out how you can get involved and find support.

We’re also delighted to be able to share some personal stories from colleagues on the subject of building an equal world and progressing gender equality. Thank you for your contributions.

Let’s talk about menopause and supporting our carers

This week, beginning at our IWD event taking place tomorrow (Friday 6 March 2020) in Firth Hall, we’re starting a conversation about two important areas of work – creating a menopause friendly workplace and supporting our carers. This is about creating a supportive work environment where everyone can thrive. Whether or not you are attending the event, we’re keen to get your input as we take this work forward.

If you would like to share your experiences of menopause or caring responsibilities or just want to know more, email staffwellbeing@sheffield.ac.uk We welcome interest from all genders.

Around one in eight members of staff at our University are carers and this number is set to grow as more of us care for relatives and friends in an aging population. Managing the dual pressures of work and home life can be difficult and without support, carers may suffer from stress and exhaustion or may simply give up work all together. We want to ensure that all members of staff can thrive at work by offering practical support, raising awareness and establishing a culture of support. We’ve recently become members of Employers for Carers, Carers UK's business forum. Our membership includes a range of resources that can help us support colleagues who juggle work and care, including resources for managers.

52 per cent of staff at the University are female and between the ages of 40 and 64. This group is statistically much more likely than any other group of staff to have significant caring responsibilities and related challenges at home. In addition, this stage of life can bring significant challenges in dealing with the emotional and physical symptoms of the menopause.

At tomorrow’s event, we’re also beginning to think about how we talk about the menopause at work, and to think about how we better support women to be successful in their roles regardless of the challenges the menopause may bring and to enjoy the right work life balance. If you are going through the menopause and would like information or just someone to talk too, or if you’re a line manager looking for guidance, you can contact the staff helpline at any time to speak to a trained counsellor who will offer a safe and confidential space for you to discuss how the menopause is impacting you. Call 0800 028 1947.

Resources for carers and managers

About the menopause and support

Your stories

Thank you to everyone who got in touch to share their experiences in celebration of International Women's Day

Read all stories

Sarah Whitehouse


New parent room

To help decorate a new parent room for nursing mothers, we're running a competition to ask for your favourite parenting quotes.

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Network for women

Expressions of interest are welcomed for the role of Chair or Steering Group Committee member.

Email hrequality@sheffield.ac.uk

Network for parents

A network for all staff and students who have families or are thinking about having families. Everyone welcome.

Visit Parents@TUOS

Find out more about our inclusion and gender equality work