The 8th edition of the International Women’s Conference saw the confluence of women from 60 countries including 250 delegates, 60 students from over 30 colleges and 150 rural women from 4 states of India. The conference set the tone for open discussions about critical issues faced by women in positions of leadership and influence and how spirituality provides key tools for their professional and personal journeys.

Many distinguished speakers addressed the delegates and shared their experiences intertwining womanhood with spirituality, leadership and the way forward. The splendid Vishalakshi Mantap provided the perfect backdrop for the 3 day event.

One of the key outcomes of the conference was a signature campaign kick started by the IWC delegation titled #bringbackourgirls and #yazidigirlsmatter to support and bring to attention the longstanding struggles of the Yazidi women held captive by the ISIS.

A leadership in action session saw the delegates deliberate on different focus areas including corporate governance, good parenting, zero budget natural farming, education, gender equality, women in sport, conflict resolution and trauma relief, water, yoga and meditation,  the role of women in reviving art and culture, prisoner rehabilitation and open defecation free districts in India to come up with action oriented solutions.

Apart from the dialogues, the conference was lit up by cultural celebrations. With just three days to prepare, 1000 students from The Art of Living schools across the country presented a classical dance performance. On the second day, leading fashion labels from top fashion designers in India and Vivia Ferragamo from Italy contributed their ensembles for a fashion show followed by an auction in support of the Gift a Smile project that provides free and holistic education to 58,904 students across 20 states in India, in which 48% are girls.

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