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ONE VISION: ALL WOMEN UNITE(D)!

As I glanced and read through the stories of some of the women present on World Pulse and participating at the program Voices of the Future 2010, I realized, that we all face the same challenges, no matter where we come from or where we are living.
In every woman I met and befriended with, I discovered a side of myself or of my community or a part of my life-story. So, in my eyes there are no individual challenges or barriers: we are all fighting and struggling to gain our place in society and to let our voices be heard from the United States to Australia, all across the globe.
Gender inequality and gender-based violence, environmental issues, racism, corruption, illiteracy, sanitation topics, migration and integration, war, starvation and exploitation in all its various forms are present everywhere. In some countries they are stronger felt than in others because of the consequences they bring along. The focus is not to be put solely on this but on the lessons learned by ourselves or by other populations and people who went through it before us.
Pulse Wire helped me realize that a ground for common action has been created where women can meet, talk about, share and exchange their experiences in a protected atmosphere. I learned a lot on this journey and every time I read through the different journals I feel the positivity and inspiration of all women, and the will and strength for a change!
Working in the area of integration of migrant women in Italy, I realized the fundamental importance of literacy and education of women to make them feel and be active part of the society and recognize the potential for change in themselves. My work gives me the chances to get deep insight into a variety of different cultures, traditions, and challenges and so I like to share my “little discoveries” with all women on the site. If there is an offer for grants, fellowships, training I like sharing it because it can make the difference for some women. If I read interesting books, I share my idea on them with others to set up an exchange and to learn to see through other women’s eyes. If there are actions taken to raise awareness for situations that are not dealt with in the news, I post them in my journal because I find it important to inform.
I think we are all interconnected. There is not an I and them. We are all inhabitants of one and the same planet and face similar challenges. So let’s make our energy flow and reach out for a positive, active change:ALL TOGETHER AS A (COM)UNITY!
THANK YOU!

Comments

ariniaina's picture

Hi Eliana, Nice post. Yes, it

Hi Eliana,

Nice post. Yes, it seems like we all have the same stories, the same experiences and obviously the same challenges. And thanks to Pulse Wire, we are all united and work together on these challenges.

I believe you're a special person with a big heart; this is why you love sharing. I want to thank you for that. Keep it up!

Best,

Ariniaina

Thanks for visiting my blog http://ariniaina.wordpress.com

Eliana's picture

Thank you, Ariniaina, I

Thank you, Ariniaina,
I appreciate your reading through my post and giving me your comment on it. And of course many thanks to you for the compliments. We all have a lot to give. I am glad and much appreciate having met you on Worldpulse because you are a special and strong woman with a lot of energy and a strong believe and love in what you do. Thank you for your commitment and for being my friend
Peace to you
ELiana

Eliana

Dear Eliana,

Very interesting topic and I like the global angle that you took for your assignment. But I'd like to know more about what is affecting the community you live or work in, what hurdles are there to change and what are you currently doing to address that? We all face many of the same problems, but often the solutions are very specific culturally. I look forward to knowing more!

Kind regards,

Rachael

"In every human heart there are a few passions that last a lifetime. They're with us from the moment we're born, and nothing can dilute their intensity." Rob Brezny

Eliana's picture

Dear Rachel, Thank you for

Dear Rachel,
Thank you for your constructive comment on my journal entry. I will now try to answer the questions you brought up and try not to sound too repetitive.
Working with migrant women makes it necessary for us to have high level of empathy and understanding for the original cultures, traditions and believes of the women and the society they are part of. In our work, our main focus lies on teaching women Italian language in order to enable them to communicate with the people they meet and to feel a little bit part of the new community they are in. Some women are now really happy because they managed to take the city bus to the course location on their own: buying ticket, asking for information and understanding. It appeared that the women participating at our course face a double challenge:
1. They don’t know where they are, they mostly did not decide to come to Italy on their own but followed their husbands. They leave behind their relatives and family and sometimes even their jobs. Here they feel like strangers and sometimes are treated as such by society. We organize meetings with the autoctonous population to give them an insight into the culture and traditions of the Pakistani, Moroccan, Albanian, Ghanian, and Etiopian population. In this area we work also with migrant children in their schools and promote the idea: that there are no differences but only enrichments on both sides and that everything is based on reciprocal exchange and sharing for a better and more peaceful and respectful living together.
2. The women even when they are in Italy they feel the challenges of their native culture, tradition and customs that are mostly based on male-dominated rules. They have to ask for permission to attend our course and sometimes the husbands come to see the location of the course and the people participating there. We invite them to join in the course too and show them what the course and methods are like. But as soon as the course is over, these women don’t have any chance of meeting outside and establish friendship with the other women. They return to their homes where their duties are: cooking, washing, cleaning the house, preparing the children for kindergarden or school, looking after the children and waiting for their husbands to come home from work. The only leisure they have is watching tv. They are economically dependent on their husbands and male relatives and are not allowed to work.
Those women who come to Italy on their own and are not married, come to the course to learn the language with the aim of finding a job as nurses or in the field of elderly-assistance and care. Finding a job is really difficult issue. There are little opportunities and furthermore there are many discriminations towards migrant women. This requires us to work with other organizations that can help them in finding a job placement.
We accompany women to get to know the territory and the services offered on it: maternity care, health center, basic medical assistance and legal advice.

Even in the workplace we deal with exploitation of the male/female workforce: inadequate working conditions, too long working hours and not equal wages for the work. These injustices are possible due to legislation based on working permits that have to be renewed every one or two years. To renew them, you have to have a job and a contract. Some employers don’t even stipulate a contract with the workers. They know that the migrants need a job to live and survive so they abuse of this situation. This led to the tumults of Rosarno, South Italy, in February, when the migrant protested against this slave-like condition. This is not a mere problem of the South but is felt in the North, too. We try to raise awareness on what the rights are and we address women and men to services that offer legal support to them for free.

I hope I could answer all your questions. If there is something more, you would like to know please don't hesitate and let me know.

Thank you
Peace to you
Eliana

Eliana

Farona's picture

This is a simply a wonderful

This is a simply a wonderful post – I enjoyed how you expressed yourself succinctly. And I absolutely concur with this lines "There is not an I and them".
You're not only a sharing person but caring as well :-)

With Kindness & Gratitude from the heart of Arabia !

Eliana's picture

Thank you, Farona, I really

Thank you, Farona,
I really appreciate your comment on my journal entry. And I am glad that you agree that we are all united and not separated.
Thank you for the compliments.
I wish you a peaceful and harmonious week-end and send you my best wishes from Italy
With peace
Eliana

Eliana

IvanaG's picture

Original Eliana!

Whenever I read something from you I feel your caring heart and this post is not any different! It's just lovely how you expressed our unity and challenges shared by all women across the globe. I agree with what you said that we are pretty much sharing the same vision and have a tendency to have the same rights! The rights women ask worldwide are the same, only the communities differ and paths in getting them. Some countries need to start from the beginning, since they are in too conservative societies, other are well inside the fight and getting to the point - but one thing is for sure: One general path for everyone is to speak their voice, don't wait emphatically and unite with others to get stronger and exactly this is what World Pulse is offering to us!
I also loved reading about your specific activities with migrant women and what you are doing in Italy. These issues are very important and I have a lot more to say about it, but perhaps I'll save it for a bigger discussion or specific journal entry!
In the meantime, I can't wait reading more from you and sharing!

Best,
Ivana

Eliana's picture

Dear Ivana, Thank you for

Dear Ivana,
Thank you for your comment. You are a real inspiration to me. I agree with you that countries take different ways and approaches to reach their goals concerning women’s issues. As I experienced, even in countries that are considered to be in the middle of it and on the way, are sometimes not as far as they consider themselves to be. In Italy, for example, we face male-dominated laws that no one thinks to abolish or to change.
I wanted to renew my passport. My son, since he was born has his own passport and does not figure on mine at all. I have never been married to my son’s father: we simply lived together and I kept my residence at my native home.
I went to the passport office. I knew, for safety reasons, that I would need a signature and allowance of my son’s father to renew my son’s passport. I could accept this because it is a precaution in case a parent should decide to kidnap the kid and travel abroad.
But the officer told me, that even for my passport, I needed his signature so that MY passport could be renewed. I explained my whole story and situation to him, but he could not do anything about it, except showing me an article in the legal code that says that.
So I ask: is this individual freedom? Is this freedom of movement? Are we Italian women really that much emancipated and empowered compared to more conservative societies? Or do we only pretend to be?
The strangest thing is that my son’s father never needs any signature from me to renew documents or to get child sustain. How is that possible?

I would really like to know more about you, too. And I hope we will have the chance to talk and share and exchange ideas, opinions and challenges on the issue of migrant women.
Thank you.
Peace to you
Eliana

Eliana

noreens's picture

I liked your post Eliana.

I liked your post Eliana. Actually I always find your posts to be unique.

I copied this from your response to Ivana..............Are we Italian women really that much emancipated and empowered compared to more conservative societies? Or do we only pretend to be?

I'm glad you wrote that because I really think that applies to women all over the world - in some form. And what one society calls "control" or "lack of freedom" another society might have a different name for it, or not see it as control. I think we all have quite a way to go till we reach our goals.

Noreen

Eliana's picture

Dear Noreen, Thank you for

Dear Noreen,
Thank you for your reply. I always find it an enrichment to read your posts and comments. You are a real inspiration to me.
You are right, we have quite a long way before us but the important thing is to realize that and to keep on going adapting our path to our needs and the ones of our societies. And never give up because there is no mountain too high to be climbed. We need to use the right equipment and prepare ourselves to do so. And that's what we are doing here in Worldpulse, in our journals and through our engagement, personally and professionally. I am sure we will make it, as VOF or as individuals.
I wish you a peaceful Sunday with your family
Peace to you
Eliana

Eliana

judyschiller's picture

Oh, so very true!

Hello, Eliana,
I really liked your post, with your emphasis on unity, being united, and community. I also enjoyed how you "played with" these words, with parentheses. Very creative, and that shows your very strong command of English too!

I just finished reading a post regarding violence against women in the Congo, and while I'm not negating that atrocity in any way, I thought to myself, "but rape is used as a weapon/tool in the United States too! Then I came to your post, and you talk about how we all face the same challenges everywhere, maybe just not to the same degree. You were reading my mind! :)

Keep up the fantastic writing, and the only suggestion I'd like to make is to use the bold feature less, as it can be distracting from your message, especially if you do not highlight an entire sentence.

All the best to you!
Judy

Eliana's picture

Dear Judy, Thank you for your

Dear Judy,
Thank you for your comment and suggestions. I really appreciated them very much and they were really helpful to me. Unfortunately, your message reached me just now, and my last assignment was sent in yesterday. So the next reader will have to face the "bold feature" again:-)

I know about the situation in Congo and I know that rape is an atrocity towards humanity and it is used as a weapon/tool causing greater damage than bombs because it violates the dignity of women, children and men who will be excluded by their society and community for what happened to them. They take with them the stigma others imposed to them. To different extent and entity rape is, unfortunately, used as a means all over the word, even in areas where there are no ongoing open conflicts or wars.
I am glad I was able to read your mind with my post even if I am a couple of miles distant.

Thank you for your time and patience when reading through my journal.
Your comments were and still are great help to me.
Best wishes of peace
Eliana

Eliana

Vega Tom's picture

United

Hi Eliana -
You have a very powerful voice and certainly issues affecting women are global. I'd like to hear more about what specifically you are facing in your community and how this fits in with the bigger global picture. It is exciting to see you engage and really be a part of the potential that is World Pulse and Web 2.0 in connecting women, globalizing the awareness of the issues women face and with such a positive, determined voice. Keep it up!
Vega

Eliana's picture

Dear Vega, first of all I

Dear Vega,
first of all I would like to thank you for the time you spend in reading and going through my journal and putting up such a useful and professional comment.

Actually, I have been asked just the same question about what are the challenges my community is facing by Rachael and I replied to her ´post. In order not to write the same issues and challenges again and again, I would like to invite you to read the reply to the comment I sent to Rachae. I hope you can find all the answers to your question there too. If not, please don't hesitate to recontact me and I will be pleased to expose them to you.

Thank you for your motivating and inspiring comment.

Peace to you
ELiana

Eliana

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