The MC Future Shapers 2020 Awards are here and we're shining a light on the resilience of Gen Z and Millennial women

This week marks our 2020 Future Shapers Awards, showcasing game-changing women at the top of their fields and this year we are shining a spotlight on Generation Z and Millenials.

These women, or 'Generation COVID' as they have been dubbed have emerged as the hardest hit by the coronavirus pandemic, but through determination, innovation and resilience, they are also the ones at the forefront taking action and pushing for change.

According to research by BBC Panorama, people aged 16-25 are over twice as likely as others to have lost their jobs during the coronavirus outbreak, and six in 10 have suffered a pay cut. And as we re-enter the workplace and jobs become fewer and more competitive, it is young women under 25 that are predicted to struggle to get their foot on the career ladder.

It's unsurprising therefore that young women are also the most likely group to have suffered high levels of depression, anxiety and loneliness this year, with a UCL study citing unemployment, inequality and domestic violence (which has seen a spike this year) as key factors.

Every year, our Future Shapers awards honour incredible women who we believe are positively shaping the way in which women live and work today, and for the sheer resilience of women in this age group, we want to celebrate them.

Over the next week, we will be profiling the game changing women who we have named Future Shapers, from equality advocates and tech innovators to human rights defenders and anti-racism campaigners.

But we're not just honouring young women, we're also aiming to empower and support them, so expect a huge dose of career inspiration and a lot of practical advice from our Future Shapers winners, powerhouse judges and Marie Claire team.

We will be breaking down methods to successfully pivot your career, side hustles to help future-proof you in the new normal, practical ways to deal with career uncertainty and how to take a stand against workplace inequality.

Plus, for a much-needed confidence boost, there will be lessons on showing your true worth, inspiration on employing yourself and hands-on advice for negotiating a pay rise in a pandemic and combatting impostor syndrome.

‘Quite often the only thing holding women back is a belief in themselves’, Anna Jones, Co-Founder of AllBright tells us in an empowering interview, one of many with inspirational businesswomen that will be published throughout the week.

Well, by the end of Future Shapers, we hope to have empowered, enlightened and inspired you all to go and take on the world.

Everyone is welcome so join us to celebrate, elevate and support the young women around us.

Stay tuned to our Marie Claire UK platforms for an inspiring Future Shapers week!

Jenny Proudfoot
Features Editor

Jenny Proudfoot is an award-winning journalist, specialising in lifestyle, culture, entertainment, international development and politics. She has worked at Marie Claire UK for seven years, rising from intern to Features Editor and is now the most published Marie Claire writer of all time. She was made a 30 under 30 award-winner last year and named a rising star in journalism by the Professional Publishers Association.