The Belgian government has honoured International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) president Sonja Eggerickx as an “exceptional woman”. To celebrate the one hundredth anniversary of International Women’s Day on March 8, 2011, the Belgian government celebrated 100 exceptional women, including athletes, writers, business women, and volunteers.
Sonja Eggerickx was honored for her outstanding service as a Humanist leader. Her volunteer activities include serving as president of Unie Vrijzinnige Verenigingen (UVV), the Flemish umbrella organization for Humanism in Belgium, as well as president of IHEU.
Sonja took part in a conference and ceremony in the Belgian Senate along with the other exceptional women. The honorees were each given a statuette in recognition of their pioneering work.
“They are pioneers who took their part in achieving more equality in Belgian society, who cleared the way for others or fought against discrimination” said Joelle Milquet, vice prime minister of Belgium and also minister for labour and equal opportunities.
Ms. Milquet went on to describe the women as: “Heroes of every day, who earn respect for what they do. Militant women who forced their way in bastions of men and whose fight was decisive or pioneering or renewing.”