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Author Catherine Riley
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We unveil plans for youth-focused centenary exhibition

We unveil plans for youth-focused centenary exhibition

To mark International Women’s Day (8 March 2018), we have announced plans to stage a centenary exhibition in Manchester, birthplace of the suffrage movement, which will celebrate 100 years since some women won the right to vote in the UK. 

Called ‘Spirited’, the exhibition will focus on the young social activists that were at the heart of the first-wave movement for change, looking at their role in the fight for female suffrage and the ongoing battle for gender equality over the past century. 

“One of our goals for 2018 is to empower, inspire and engage young women and girls to improve their wellbeing, enhance gender equality, and develop social cohesion,” said Spirit Chief Executive Debbie Lye. “These are the criteria behind our current funding of five regional WOW festivals, the Sporting Equality Fund we run with the Scottish Government, and our #iwill match funding. 

“Our exhibition Spirited will be a positive, youth-focused celebration of gender equality, as well as a provocation to people young and old to think about the effects of social activism, and to embrace the opportunities that exist to make change for themselves.”

The exhibition will be hosted by the Portico Library, and will feature items from the collections of the British Library, Women’s Library and Bishopsgate Institute.

“We know from our partnerships with Fawcett, Women of the World and the #iwill campaign how engaged and enthusiastic young people are. Our exhibition will draw out similarities as well as differences between contemporary and historical gender activism. We want to show (rather than tell) that making change is possible no matter who you are or where you come from.

Spirited will shine a spotlight on the girls and young women whose stories have rarely been told, in order to inspire today’s young people to take their first steps into social action.

“As with all the projects and events we fund, we aim to create a lasting legacy of improved wellbeing at both an individual and community level by engaging, inspiring and empowering all those who spend time at Spirited.”