With International Women’s Day on March 8th, we’re celebrating the many women who drive our work behind the scenes here at Trees That Count and Project Crimson. They’ve got advice on reaching your career goals, finding inspiration, and, naturally, some fave native tree picks. Here's Trees That Count ambassador Eliza McCartney.
Who are the women that inspire you today and why?
I’ve always been inspired by the women who never give up on what’s important to them, no matter how great the challenges may be. Over time, I’ve realised the women who inspire me the most are the strong wāhine in my family, who have been my role models (whether I knew it or not) ever since I was young. There is something very powerful for young girls to witness those around them never giving in when the going gets tough. Unlike other role models, you see the intimate, personal struggles and what it takes to overcome them. There are superwomen everywhere if you look hard enough.
What's your advice to women wanting to succeed in sports at the highest level?
Staying true to yourself, particularly doing what you know is right for you. At times it can be easy to look at others and feel what you are doing isn’t good enough, that you should behave the same way they do. But in sport, we rely on our bodies, and one person’s body is completely different to the next, which means your body’s needs are unique to you. Trusting your own experience is the best way to know what works for you.
What inspired you to get involved with helping our environment?
The environment has given us everything we have, and I started to realise that we don’t give back nearly enough to keep the balance. Nature is so beautiful, so complex, and awe inspiring. It suddenly felt so important to help protect what we have, and help remind other Kiwis of that too. I think Kiwi kids also have an inherent love for the trees they grew up playing in.
What's your favourite native tree?
Growing up in Tāmaki Makaurau, I don’t know if I could ever truly go past the Pōhutukawa. Our very own Christmas tree, how cool is that?