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PAP Women’s Wing marks IWD 2024 with call for Singaporean women to invest in their well-being

09 Mar 2024 4 min read

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Survey: 8 in 10 women do not prioritise and set aside dedicated time for self-care

In line with the United Nation’s International Women’s Day (IWD) 2024 theme ‘Invest in Women: Accelerate Progress’, the People’s Action Party (PAP) Women’s Wing is rallying women to invest in their well-being, and society to enable more women to do so. This emphasis is underscored by a recent survey by the Women’s Wing and NTUC U Women & Family (U WAF) which found that 8 in 10 women do not prioritise and set aside dedicated time for self-care.

Findings from the survey were revealed today at the PAP Women’s Wing IWD 2024 commemoration event Wellness In Action and set the stage to challenge the prevailing tendency among women to downplay the importance of self-care.  Aiming to spark a collective mindset shift and prioritise their well-being without hesitation, the event also called on Singaporean women to nurture self-care habits in their daily lives.

Speaking at the event, PAP Women’s Wing Chairwoman Sim Ann said, “Singapore women give a lot of ourselves to those we love, at times at the expense of our own well-being. For this year’s International Women’s Day, the PAP Women’s Wing would like to say to our women that self-care is not selfish. Giving our own physical and mental well-being goals due attention is how women can go the distance, develop to our full potential and support the ones we love.”

PAP Women’s Wing Chairwoman Sim Ann and IWD 2024 Organising Chairwoman Nadia Ahmad Samdin attending the Leading from the Heart sharing by women leaders

Survey: Flexible work arrangements and family support networks among factors to encourage self-care

In collaboration with NTUC U WAF, the PAP Women’s Wing conducted an online survey to understand how to better support the holistic growth of women to take up leadership roles at home, work and in the community.

The survey revealed the complex landscape for women to take up leadership roles both in and outside the household. While respondents were largely supportive of women taking up leadership roles, more than half were of the view that they were subject to gender biases (53.1%), received insufficient support in balancing personal and professional life (51.4%), and faced difficulty in resuming work after family leave (61.8%). Furthermore, while 72.5% of male respondents were of view that women leaders were valued and respected for their opinions in the community, workplace, and household, only 49.2% of female respondents shared the same perception.

The survey also revealed a stark picture of women’s well-being – only one in five (21.8%) female respondents considered their well-being a pivotal factor in their life choices. Respondents suggested that women could be more empowered to prioritise self-care if they had flexible work schedules (68.6%), were able to set boundaries to establish limits and decline requests when needed (55.9%), and if they had the support of family and friends in dividing up duties (48.3%).

Year-long initiatives to champion well-being

In response to these insights, the PAP Women’s Wing will dedicate efforts to promote women’s holistic growth, furnishing women with the knowledge and power to define and attain their health goals. Wellness In Action sets the stage for this year-long effort, which will bring together a network of female community partners to spearhead activities and discussions on leadership, nutrition, mental well-being and on fostering a healthy lifestyle.

PAP Women’s Wing Chairwoman Sim Ann and participants stretching at a Barre Beginner Stretch Class

PAP Women’s Wing Chairwoman Sim Ann and participants dancing at a Dance Movement workshop

Organising Chairwoman of the IWD 2024 event, Nadia Ahmad Samdin, said “This year’s International Women’s Day is a call for tangible, sustained action from all of society to empower and nurture women holistically; to thrive, not just survive. We are so excited to be working with everyday women leaders in Singapore from all walks of life to spotlight their journeys, and the intersection of personal well-being and professional success. The perception gap on the representation, respect and recognition given to women leaders is evident that we need to continue our efforts to bring men and women on the same page, to advance gender equity together. To all women, we want you to know that we see you, celebrate you, and walk alongside you in your journey.”

The PAP Women’s Wing also launched their Instagram platform @PAPWomensWing, to spotlight their efforts in championing a nurturing ecosystem where women can flourish in every aspect of their lives, and confidently pursue their ambitions while supporting their families.