Every year the world celebrates the International Mountain Day on 11 December. This international day was launched for the first time in 2003 and since then, it has become a symbolic date to acknowledge the uniqueness of mountains across the world. This year’s theme for the International Mountain Day is “Women move mountains”. To celebrate this day, the MOVING project and Euromontana published a booklet titled “Women move Europe’s mountains” (available in English and French). The European Association for Innovation in Local Development was the lead editor of this booklet.
What can you find in the booklet?
This publication is the result of a collaboration between the MOVING project, an international and multidisciplinary project to strengthen the resilience of mountain products value chains, and Euromontana, the European Association of Mountain Areas.
With this booklet, we thus want to welcome and celebrate this year’s International Mountain Day theme. Making a fresh, inclusive narrative for the future of mountains is a small but crucial first step.
This booklet is a compilation of 13 testimonies from women who either live in mountain areas of Europe or work to make them more sustainable and future-focused. Their testimonies unite the voices, narratives, and perspectives of women operating in several fields important to the future of mountains who hail from various mountain ranges in Europe.
This booklet also demonstrates how important women’s roles are in their communities. It highlights that mountain women face similar challenges, and above all, lack of adequate recognition. Lastly, this brochure also looks at the opportunities that women have in mountain areas.
As years passed, the predominant vision about mountains as mere “fragile ecosystems” has been increasingly challenged. A new narrative that looks at mountains as territories of opportunity has emerged and is becoming more and more widely accepted.
On this special day for mountains, we thus call on policy makers at all levels to acknowledge the contribution of rural, remote and mountain areas to Europe’s green and digital transition, and more particularly the role of communities, who need to see their role fully recognized in this new narrative.
We also firmly believe that this transformation towards more sustainable, liveable and future-oriented mountain areas cannot be achieved without women. Women are a key pillar of mountain regions.
They are the backbone of the family, they often are entrepreneurs, they nurture relations within their own communities and with their younger relatives who have left mountain areas. Women are custodians of traditions and knowledge, but also fighters and drivers of change in the mountains.