All posts tagged: #WomenInspire

How to Reduce Violence? Celebrate the Young Women Who Do It Every Day

Wherever you are in the world, statistics on gender-based violence are overwhelming – if not terrifying. At a time when 1 in 3 women will experience some form of violence over the course of her life, reducing the figures can seem like an insurmountable task. For an individual especially, it’s all too easy to feel like no match for a problem of this scale. But there is a simple thing we can all do to make a difference; we can celebrate the young people who are increasingly choosing to devote their time, energy and skills to eliminating violence and protecting vulnerable people in their communities. Young people like 25-year-old student, Stephanie Moniz. Stephanie is currently studying for a Masters in Clinical Counseling Psychology at Brenau University, and as part of that she’s completing an internship at Gateway Domestic Violence Center. When she’s not in class or doing her internship, she spends her time working at the shelter as an employee. I talked to her about her studies, her work, and her thoughts on gender-based violence. So first of all, can you tell me a bit about your internship? …

A Seat at the Table with Indego Africa

We have all heard the battle cry for education from the first lady, Michelle Obama and the call for inclusion from GIWPS Executive Director Melenne Verveer. Both women have been in the spotlight for their views and work with women and girls, specifically individuals living in impoverished areas or post conflict zones. Both women are sending the same message: Women and girls need to be seen as active drivers of progress and development, and we need to be better at including them in these processes. We know the facts and we have the data, and it proves that women don’t just deserve to be part of the magical operation called decision making but it also makes monetary sense as well as humanitarian sense. We are here, we are humans and we are capable of playing an active role in our legislative, judicial, parliamentary and governmental bodies so give us a seat at the freaking table. Since we have all these facts and data that prove the importance of educating girls and including women in the …

Women as Leaders

Women haven’t always been best suited for the leading roles. A thousand years ago, leadership depended on other skills than what is required today. As Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie said in her famous speech We should all be feminists, “[…] human beings lived then in a world in which physical strength was the most important attribute for survival. The physically stronger person was more likely to lead. And men in general are physically stronger; of course, there are many exceptions.” That isn’t the case any more. Women are just as capable of being leaders as men. Yet, men are dominating as leaders in almost every sector. With less than one week to Women Deliver in Copenhagen, it’s time to reflect on why women are still underrepresented among higher positions, and how we can change that. Over 50 percent of the population are women. Still, it’s not news that parliaments all over the world are dominated by men. Worldwide, 22 percent of the parliamentarians are women. In 37 countries, this number is below 10 percent.Parliaments in Micronesia, Yemen, Qatar, Tonga, Palau …

This Mother’s Day, Give the Gift of Kindness

I’m lying in bed awake at four in the morning, nursing my restless and sick son so that he can sleep. This is my second Mother’s Day, and I can honestly say that the last two years of my life, starting from when I got pregnant with him, have been the most rewarding, but also most challenging, exhausting, frustrating and at times heartbreaking years of my life. Why heartbreaking? Because I never knew that one single person, this tiny little human being, could make me doubt my abilities as a mother, a woman, a wife, a professional and a person so completely and utterly as he has. Obviously, it is not his fault. It’s not really him who makes me doubt myself, but the society around us – a society that constantly tells not only mothers, but women, that we’re not good enough. That we’re not performing to the standards set to us by others, that we’re not succeeding in “having it all”, that we’re not enough. The pressure is even worse on mothers, because of …

An Equal World is a Better World – Don’t Leave Anyone Behind

Tomorrow, Girls’ Globe is celebrating International Women’s Day under the slogan “An equal world is a better world – don’t leave anyone behind.” Through this theme we want to highlight the fact that a world where all gender are treated equally and afforded the same rights and opportunities is not only in the best interest of women and girls, but in fact benefits everyone. While women and girls continue to face the bulk of the negative consequences of gender based discrimination, such discrimination and gender stereotypes are also harmful to boys and men, and women’s inability to reach their full potential and participate in the development, and growth of their societies slows down and negatively impacts progress and well-being for everyone. We also want to bring attention to the inhumane and unbearable situation facing thousands of refugee women and their families, who find themselves stranded in between borders while fleeing horrible situations in their home countries, but are unable to find refuge in Europe as more and more nations are closing their doors at the face …

A Letter to Women Everywhere

Dear Beloved Women, How are you doing, really? This is a question a group of friends and I have been asking ourselves on a weekly basis. We meet together in coffee shops, restaurants and over Skype to have real conversations about our lives. There are no guidelines to this question except you can not respond with phrases like “I am good.” “I am okay.” I am fine.” The purpose of this question is to dig deeper into our souls and be honest with ourselves. This is often a lot harder than it sounds. Why should I have to be real when it’s so easy to pretend everything is okay? In this day and age, we are bombarded by so many messages. With a simple click of a button we can either feel great about our lives or overwhelmed. There are so many things competing for our attention. We are constantly scrolling through messages, social media feeds, causes, videos and campaigns. As women, we simply have a lot going on. Am I right? We are CEOs, entrepreneurs, …

The Journey from Nursing to Maternal Health Innovation

This article was written by Lindsay Sanders, Communications and Design Fellow at Jacaranda Health, and originally posted on Jacaranda’s website.  There are few people in this world who dedicate their lives to serve others. Most of us bounce around from job to job, exploring new industries, discovering which professions we like and dislike. But not Jacaranda Health’s Chief Medical Officer, Faith Muigai. She knew from a young age that she was committed to one cause: empowering women and families to make positive health decisions. Faith mapped out her professional path to the medical field as a teenager in Kenya. She ambitiously uprooted to the United States when she was 17 years old, working as a nursing assistant to pay her way through college. She quickly rose to the ranks after receiving her Master’s Degree in Nursing and Administration, taking on management and leadership roles from leading organizations like John Hopkins University. After a long journey in the states, Faith headed back to her roots in East Africa to use her skills to help the women and families who need …

January’s Inspiration

A new year offers the perfect opportunity for a little motivation-renewal, and so this January I have been thinking about who, and what, inspires me. Female role models received an unusual level of media attention in 2015. There was the Pirelli calendar, which made a shift from images of nude supermodels to ones of women who’ve done really great things – think less Gigi Hadid’s boobs, more Amy Schumer’s jokes. Then there’s the ongoing fight for equal pay, championed by several of Hollywood’s most influential ladies. Jennifer Lawrence’s essay on the topic was assertive and unapologetic and went totally viral. Here in the UK, when the government announced plans to drop feminism from the politics syllabus, my fellow blogger and all-round wondergirl June Eric-Udorie launched a petition that received more than 50,000 signatures to secure the place of influential women in the brains of British teens. Magazines, including the glossies, are slowly but surely readjusting their focus. Sure, there are still obscene levels of Kardashian at every turn, but there are also features like Women of the Year Awards. There’s even a …

Girls’ Camp: Creating the Leaders of Tomorrow

By Stephanie Vizi Seventy-five grade seven girls from across Lesotho gathered at Help Lesotho’s Hlotse Centre for a week-long leadership camp last June. The girls took part in life skills trainings, which focused on preventing teenage pregnancy, rape and HIV/AIDS. Help Lesotho staff facilitated sessions on the most critical issues facing young girls in Lesotho, such as rape, the lure of sugar daddies (rich older men who lavish gifts on a young woman in return for her company or sexual favours) and gender inequality. After days of trainings, the girls demonstrated their new knowledge through self-written skits, poetry and songs. They showed the consequences of inappropriate sexual relationships (STIs, HIV and early pregnancy) while exuding confidence and a newfound sense of purpose to spread the lessons of gender equality to girls back home in their villages. A daily question and answer period provided a chance for the girls to ask pressing questions anonymously to seasoned Help Lesotho experts. Spreading the Message A 24-year-old HIV-positive mother was invited to share about her experience with gender-based violence, …