International Women’s Day, Minority-Owned Businesses, and More People & Culture News Trends

A look at the people and culture news from PR Newswire in March and April that you might have missed.


People and Culture News Trends, March-April 2023


By Ally Bautista | Published May 10, 2023


PR Newswire distributed 2,689 people and culture-related press releases throughout March and April. It can be difficult to keep up with the latest news, especially when it comes to such a comprehensive topic. So our team tracked the headlines and noticed four recurring themes that readers should be following: women empowerment, support for minority-owned businesses, educational opportunities for Black students, and inclusion for individuals with autism.

Let’s take a closer look at these trends and additional newsworthy stories from March and April.

Popular People & Culture Releases

These were some of the most-viewed people and culture-related releases over the past two months:

  • The Dove Self-Esteem Project released Cost of Beauty to illustrate the impact that social media can have on mental health. Viewed more than 19 million times, the film showcases real stories from young people who have felt the effects of toxic beauty content online.
  • Yield Giving launched a $250 million Open Call to elevate community-led, community-focused nonprofits. The initiative sought organizations that work with individuals and families of meager or modest means, as well as groups who face systemic challenges.
  • Robert Kraft’s Foundation to Combat Antisemitism created the #StandUpToJewishHate campaign, urging Americans to use the blue square emoji as a symbol of support for the Jewish community.
  • The Alliance for Young Artists & Writers announced the 100th annual class of National Medalists in the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, the nation’s most prestigious program for teens in grades 7-12.

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People & Culture News Trends

Here’s a look at a few of the trends we noticed among people and culture-related press releases in March and April, with a few examples of each.

International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month

Observed on March 8, International Women’s Day is an annual global holiday that celebrates women and honors their achievements, as well as brings attention to women’s rights and gender equity. In the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia, March is also Women’s History Month.

With PR Newswire publishing over 200 press releases that mentioned International Women’s Day and/or Women’s History Month in March and April, it’s clear that companies were committed to recognizing and empowering women.

Common themes for these releases included campaigns to highlight women’s stories, educational scholarships and business grants for women, and studies that analyzed the gender gap in various industries. Here are a few:

Minority-Owned Businesses

Though we love seeing minority-owned businesses thrive, it’s unfortunately common for their owners and leaders to face racial and financial challenges. As just one example, 57% of Black business owners have experienced being denied a bank loan when starting their businesses, while the same is true for only 37% of non-Black business owners.

Understanding the importance of diversity to the business world and to consumers alike, companies are launching funding and mentoring initiatives to help businesses owned and/or led by minorities. From grant programs to pitch competitions and more, here are some examples:

Higher Education in the Black Community

College can open many doors for students, but studies show that only 35% of Black Americans have associate degrees or higher. The past decade has also seen a decline in Black student enrollment. Releases distributed in the last two months show that organizations are eager to support Black students in their education journeys.

One of the most common ways companies are doing this is through scholarships that help make education more accessible. Several releases also highlighted companies that partner with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to provide academic and financial opportunities to their students.

PR Newswire distributed nearly 70 press releases that mentioned HBCUs in March and April. Here are a few:

  • Stillman College won the 34th Honda Campus All-Star Challenge, besting 64 HBCU academic teams to earn a $75,000 institutional grant.
  • As part of its Retool Your School program, The Home Depot® awarded 36 HBCUs with more than $2 million in grants to improve their campuses.
  • SOUR PATCH KIDS® partnered with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund for the third annual “Mischief for Change” scholarship program and introduced the “Sample Our Schools” program for HBCU marching band fans.
  • As part of a diversity-focused initiative with Pensole Lewis College of Business & Design, Designer Brands Inc. officially opened JEMS by PENSOLE. The new Black-owned footwear factory aims to advance the design careers of PLC graduates.

World Autism Awareness Day and World Autism Month

World Autism Awareness Day, also called World Autism Acceptance Day, is celebrated on April 2. Additionally, the month of April is World Autism Month. This holiday and designated month aim to support autistic individuals and advocate for their rights. The CDC reports that the prevalence of autism spectrum disorder in American children increased between 2018 and 2020, illustrating the growing necessity for inclusion.

Several companies recognized the day and month by highlighting sensory-friendly products and services, as well as making charitable donations. A few examples include:

  • Chrysler partnered with the Autism Society of America to create a Calm Cabin package, which turns any Chrysler Pacifica into a calm, safe, and comfortable space for those with autism.
  • Goodnites donated $150,000 to the Autism Society of America. The partnership will also provide research and resources to families with neurodivergent children in need of bedwetting solutions.
  • Chuck E. Cheese hosted a Sensory Sensitive Sunday event at all 460 U.S. and Canada locations, plus held a month-long fundraiser for Autism Speaks.
  • Beaches® Resorts debuted all-new Sensory Guides designed to help caregivers and guests with cognitive disabilities navigate the resort experience based on their sensory sensitivities.

Looking Ahead

With more designated months ahead, like AAPI Heritage Month and Pride Month, we anticipate more press releases that highlight companies’ efforts to celebrate diversity and promote equality. May is also Women’s Health Month, which may bring another spike in news regarding women. Overall, it will be exciting to see what trends will pop up as we move closer to summer.

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About the Author

Ally Bautista headshotAlly Bautista is a Customer Content Specialist at PR Newswire. Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, she enjoys baking, creating visual art, and keeping up with pop culture news in her free time.