GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The month of March is dedicated to recognizing women worldwide who have made significant contributions in history.

This week is Women in Construction Week which empowers and highlights females who work in the male-dominated field.

According to the National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), last year women made up nearly 11% of the entire construction workforce.

“They’re not aware of the opportunities they have in construction. Some women aren’t comfortable being boots on the ground and swinging a hammer. That’s not the only thing you can do in construction,” Teresa Riley, president of the NAWIC Grand Rapids Rapids Chapter #194, said.

The Grand Rapids Chapter consists of more than 25 women who are on the ground, in marketing, accounting, human resources, project management and other sectors at various companies across Kent County.

This year, the chapter is celebrating 50 years of advancing the causes of all women in construction, from tradeswomen to business owners.

“We are celebrating the fact that women can do construction and are in construction. There’s different ways companies can contribute: participate and attend the events, support your female workers and celebrate their accomplishments,” Riley said.

This week and every quarter chapter members will work with Family Promise to work on houses and mobile homes that are being remodeled for families in need. The group will also collect food items to donate to Hand 2 Hand, a local nonprofit that gives children backpacks filled with food to eliminate child hunger.

On Monday there will be a free luncheon for all construction industry employees. It’s a way to say thanks to women in construction. For more information, visit the luncheon’s Facebook event.