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For you and me

As a young woman, I'm very passionate, friendly and outgoing. Some "causes" have interested me since I was young: recycling, our right as children or youth, standing up for what you believe. I was the speaker of my class in Primary and High School, the student president at the university; a "born leader" some called me... I didn't really believe it or payed much attention to it... until...

A few years ago, I realized I didn't know enough about my sexual and reproductive rights, about empowerment over my own body and decisions, over my sexuality, my beliefs. I wasn’t alone. You would think urban Guatemalan undergrad students would know more about these topics. But that is not true. Over and over I hear of stories of some 18 year old girl who is pregnant, or has an ITS and her “boyfriend” just doesn’t take responsibility or simply stops calling her. Of a girl who suffers violence at home or from her partner. Of a young woman that has been sexually active for years, without once experiencing pleasure or deciding when to have sex. I got interested in these topics, first because I wanted to be responsible and committed to myself, to knowing myself better and understanding what I wanted to do. And I stood up for me, for my friends, for the other young girls at my university. I understood that if I was passionate about these topics and had some influence on other girls, it was in my hands to stand up, and start doing something about this. Start asking for more access to information on our sexual rights, and start giving out this information; creating safe spaces to talk about these issues or to counsel other; start asking questions and looking for answers.

Today, we have a small group of young women (MU.J.E.R.E.S., http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002080100898) that functions as a net, of information, contacts, activities; all related to the empowerment of young women through sexual education. Stand up for what you believe, for what is vital for others… break the silence.

Comments

Breese's picture

Powerful work

Majoaldana - gracias por tu dedicacion, pasion, y esfuerzo! Tu trabajo es recontra importante. Have you connected with Ikirimat of Uganda? She is running sexual education programs in her country. Un abrazo!

majoaldana's picture

Gracias!

Thank you for the info... I will connecto with Ikirmat. Un abrazo para ti también :)

zoneziwoh's picture

Nicely put

Dear sister, your piece is rich in words and knowledge. You are a leader, believe it. You may not realise the wonders you have done, but remember you are changing /inspiring young women to stand up for their sexual and reproductive right.

I love this piece.

Thanks

Stay Blessed

Zoneziwoh

Blog: http://zofem.blogspot.com/

facebook: Zoneziwoh

twitter: @ZoFem

majoaldana's picture

Thanks

Thank you for your words... we must keep up standing up. I'm checking out your blog, and the work you do with women and peace is great.

ikirimat's picture

You are just on the right track

You are doing a great job. I can assure you that it is never too late. My experience with working with SHIP has enabled me appreciate that information given to just one person, listening and talking to just one person can make a great difference in someones life. I encourage you to continue with is valuable initiative.

Lets connect for more experience sharing and learning from each other.
https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/home.php?sk=group_129592720412245&ap=1

Grace Ikirimat

"It takes the hammer of persistence to drive the nail of success."


majoaldana's picture

Let's connect

Thank you for your words... I already asked to join the SHIP group at facebook. We'll keep in touch

pheebsabroad's picture

Important!

What an important issue to stand up for...well chosen because it impacts the entire planet. This is not just a women's rights issue as it can often be portrayed. It is an issue which impacts entire communities, best of luck working to empower not only yourself but others in your community too!

Pheobe

majoaldana's picture

Thank you...

Thank you for your words and good wishes Phoebe :) you are right, this is an important issue for women and men, no matter their age or sexual preferences.

pheebsabroad's picture

Good luck with everything!

Good luck with everything! Bueno suerte :)

Pheobe

sallysmithr's picture

Great Work!

After reading your article it really brought to light the information you were presenting. It is very true that we all know about sex, however do not always understand those rights. I think what you are doing is great! Keep up the great work and I would love to learn more by checking out your facebook link.

Thanks so much,

Sally Smith

majoaldana's picture

thank you

Sally, thank you for your words, for inspiring us to continue working. Look us up in fb, we'll add you as a friend. We are about to add some of the content (at least mission and vision in English). Also, there's some useful links on our wall... Thank you again, and we'll keep in touch.

ccontreras's picture

Congratulations!!!

Hi Majoaldana!
As a native Guatemalan I can tell you I am extremely happy to read your story and know how much you and your group are doing for women in tems of sexuality. I am going to "like" your group! I grew up in Guatemala and I know exactly what you are talking about, some traditions have made sexual education almost non-existent but tradition does not have to be broken just by educating women a bit more on this subject. I am so excited to hear more about your group!
Muchas muchas feliciades hermana!!! :-)
Cynthia

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

majoaldana's picture

Gracias!

Gracias por tu comentario Cynthia. I know that growing up with certain tabboo's can be hard... but we can always break them, question them, and relearn. Every comment I've received just inspires us to keep on going, to keep on working...

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