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Personal Visions for collective betterment!

When it is over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
I don't want to end up simply having visited this world." — Mary Oliver

While going through a session of recapitulation this week, evaluating my accomplishments, failures and learnings, I wondered where my journey to think ‘beyond me’ started. My personal vision coincides with my work; design innovative and ground-breaking solutions for the uplift of under-privileged women living in destitute, suffering, poverty, dependence, solitude or shame. Most of these women are main providers or nurturers who get up very early in the morning to pluck cotton from the cotton fields or harvest crops but despite being the vital and basic building block which is pivotal of patriarchal society, they do not get half of the dignity and respect they deserve. I started designing programs and projects specifically targeting the need-based solutions to issues faced by these women and during my 7 years in development sector and managed to work on over 16 proposals via different platforms and organizations for the betterment of depressed youth and women.

A year ago, my life and work coming to a halt when I refused to marry someone of my family’s choice which raised eye-brows of many men…was accused of becoming independent. seemed to have lost my sense of direction, sinking deeply in depression and despair surrounded by a strong feeling that all my past efforts are in vain. During these challenges times, it was very difficult for me to find a platform to share problems and their possible solutions with women who were working for similar cause.

I plan to continue my work in being a change agent, and I also plan to continue writing about the things I see, observe and feel. I sometimes feel I have lost all my words, my year long silence choked me…the lack of firm sense of belonging feels like stealing all the colours from my life. Through PulseWire community, and reading the stories from all corners of the world, I woke up to the reality there are women living in a lot more destitute and inhumane conditions than us, but still facing tougher challenges with tremendous amount of courage and unmatched zeal…women leaders are born even in places where women are treated like property and these stories proved to be a catalyst for me to keep fighting. The pool of talented and brave women of PulseWire community inspired me to wake up from my year long hibernation and writers’ block.

Reading all those stories made me realize that we should never let any incident in life control or alter our broader purpose of existence and I am glad to have found ‘listeners’ through this emerging bloggers’ community. I am not alone anymore!

I am thankful to Pulsewire women’s blogosphere for giving me the confidence to finally do the first write-up for my blog that I have been meaning to do for ages for the blog I registered over a year ago! I started with becoming the voice of Christian nursing school principal, Ms.Victoria Anita, who was targeted by her students due to her faith. The local media did not cover her story. I am proud to become the sound of a marginalized voice that wandered helplessly around me. It is empowering to empower! It gave me incredible satisfaction, sense of hope and inspiration seeing how a woman of a religious minority in Pakistan was fighting for her rights and refused to give in at the face of religious extremist elements.

Some day, I hope to compile all my work and writings and share it with social entrepreneurs at the beginners’ level. I am positive that my engagement with VOF will help me polish my writing skills and build my capacity in learning techniques to write boldly and openly while avoiding the worst mistakes a writer can make. I do not know if I will be one of the finalists, but I feel I have woken up from a long slumber and am ready for a fresh start, knowing, I now have friends all over the world, who are actually listening to me! This feeling of wakefulness, sharing and emotional caressing is more than what I can ask for!

Comments

Daydri's picture

thank you

for sharing your brave voice : )

good luck & keep writing!

d*

Iffat Gill's picture

thanks for reading

Thanks for reading my post and words of encouragements. I hope every un-heard voice in despair finds a listener!
Best.

Iffat Gill

harinees's picture

Thanks

hi rose

Your post is well written. It is specially good to see you are already creating change for the women in your community. Wish you all the best in your endeavors.

Iffat Gill's picture

I try!

Thanks for the comment and warm wishes. am glad you liked what i tried to convey in my write-up. Change is a tricky business and sometimes we may not even like the results, but we cannot stop trying!
Best.

Iffat Gill

Julene's picture

Good Luck

I have a good friend who suffers from depression, so I can appreciate all that you put into writing your post. It takes a lot of courage and strength to get out of the grips of depression, and I think it will help you a lot that you have a goal to focus on. Please remember that you are not alone.. there are women from all over the world on here that want to hear your story and will be very supportive for you. We all have the same goal on here - to make a better life for women around the world, so I know that you can and will find many friends on World Pulse.

Good luck my friend, my sister...

Julene

Iffat Gill's picture

The motivation!

The motivation I am getting from friends and sisters who are also sharing their stories and putting forward their own challenges in life. Thank you for the comment.
Best.

Iffat Gill

ccontreras's picture

:-)

Hi Rose,
I really enjoyed reading your journal entry. I really like your determination to keep going; it reminds me of a quote that says "he who has hope has everything". I really believe you will go very far with your goals within pulsewire and with your community. Cheers!

"I embrace emerging experience. I am a butterfly. Not a butterfly collector." - Stafford

Iffat Gill's picture

Thank you

Thank you for reading the entry and taking time to comment on it. I really appreciate your warm wishes.
Best.

Iffat Gill

Rachael Maddock-Hughes's picture

Dear Rose Gill, I have never

Dear Rose Gill,

I have never myself undergone the pressures of forced marriage, but I have a close from (also from Pakistan) who has. I admire your strength and your determination to not be tossed into a marriage which would wither your sole--now or ever! I hope that your family has come to realize the rightness of your decision and is now supporting you. But even if they don't, know that we support you!

I would also like to know what resources are available for women in Pakistan who face situations like this. My friend, who is also very well-educated, did not find hardly anyone to help her. I would love to know your thoughts.

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

Iffat Gill's picture

its a tough question...

Thanks or your comment and input Rachael. I really do not know how to properly answer this question...It hurts to even look back at those difficult times when I was facing the opposition of people I mostly relied and leaned on! I kept saying NO to accept just anyone in my life like this. I was lucky to have some supporting and understanding members within the family and that also went to my advantage. I would recommend women to go to Human Rights Commission of Pakistan if they are in a difficult situation. It is a blessing at least if you know about your legal rights as a woman when living in Pakistan.(They ahve female lawyers as well.) They are very helpful people and can give both legal aid and guidance to women who need it.

The rest depends on the individual case really, on how bad the situation is, the family background and the location within the country. I would love to be of any help to your friend if it is possible for me.

Best wishes.

Iffat Gill

Fovaisi's picture

Congratulations

Congratulations I am really very happy for you

Iffat Gill's picture

Shukriya!

Thanks for that Fatima. Hope to stay in touch!
Best.

Iffat Gill

aimeeknight's picture

VOF

Congratulations!!

"One shoe can change a life" ~ Cinderella

Iffat Gill's picture

Thank you for the wishes

Thank you for the wishes Aimee.

Iffat Gill

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