News Release

Relief Society in Action: May 2023

Members celebrate Relief Society’s anniversary and International Women’s Day

On March 17, 2023, women all over the world celebrated the 181st anniversary of the founding of the Relief Society, an organization of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for women aged 18 and older. Many honored the day by collaborating with and serving their communities.

Women across West Africa honored the legacy of past Relief Society leaders in many ways, including hosting a joint service project with a Muslim women’s group in the Gambia and holding a parade in Sierra Leone.

In Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo, hundreds gathered for a day of learning. They listened to several speakers teach about self-reliance, including representatives from banks, non-governmental organizations and their local congregations.

In Quevedo, Ecuador, members of the Relief Society cleaned up the homes of families in need, while in Chorrillos, Peru, about 250 women gathered to honor Relief Society members both past and present. Maria Pumacayo, a 105-year-old member accompanied by her granddaughter, was recognized by her fellow women for her contributions. She said, “I know that in this organization, we provide help to those in need, and now my granddaughter will also be able to live these experiences with her neighbor."

Less than two weeks later, Relief Society members from the same city in Peru put these principles of service into action by helping those affected by devastating floods in Lima. They gathered nonperishable food, water, toilet paper and clothing and assembled them into aid kits, which were then donated to 50 families in need.

International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8, just days before the Relief Society anniversary. Women in Australia and the Philippines celebrated both.

In Manila, Philippines, the Church of Jesus Christ co-hosted an event focusing on gender equality and human trafficking. Attendees learned about interfaith efforts to combat human trafficking and how they can participate in this important work.

In Queensland, Australia, Relief Society members invited local leaders to speak about the many ways women contribute to their communities. Later, these guests were given a tour of the Latter-day Saint meetinghouse in an effort to strengthen the bonds between those of different faiths.

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