I admire local women who overcome adversity in their local environs and despite the wrong done to them reach out to help others.
One such woman is Mukhtar Mai in Pakistan. Mukhtar was gang-raped via Pakistani customary law, but instead of killing herself she denounced the rape and reported it to the police. As compensation the government gave her hush money, but instead of spending the funds on herself, she decided to open schools in her community to educate girls - a true hero!
Another hero is Honorata Kizende of the DRC. She was captured in the violent and war-torn eastern parts of the DRC, and was repeatedly gang-raped, but somehow escaped. Despite being rejected by her family since according to tradition she was no longer pure, she engaged with Women for Women International to receive training and support to rebuild her life. Today Honorata is a thriving business owner and she also teaches other women how to survive.
Or there is Mamitu Gashe of Ethiopia who suffered a fistula in child birth like many other women in Africa. However, Mamitu was lucky enough to make it to the Addis Ababa Fistula Hospital to be treated surgically. Yet, instead of leaving she stayed and learned how to perform the surgery on other women by watching a doctor, Reg Hamlin (another hero), who saw her potential despite no formal education. Today Mamitu trains Western doctors on the procedure.
These people and many others like them are my heroes!