My upbringing in Kenya has greatly shaped the person that I am today. At an early age, I became aware of issues such as poverty, lack of healthcare, illiteracy and poor nutrition. It was while encountering these issues daily that I became interested in politics and international relations. Exposure to local and international print and digital media sensitized me on the role that relations between and among countries have to play in both human and economic development. The media itself fascinated me; the way in which journalists used words to bring a story to life impressed me and I aspired to be one of them.
Experience and observation has proven to me that women are the ones who were greatly affected by the socioeconomic challenges in my country. I knew then as I know now that in order to conquer these challenges, then we as women have to actively contribute to finding solutions for our betterment. The first thing that I personally felt I had to do was get the necessary education that would empower me to enact positive change. Off I went to college where I discovered my yearning to investigate problems and find possible solutions for them. It was also in college that I was able to find my voice and gain a heightened perspective on what I want to do with my future. I visualized myself working towards enacting policies that would ensure the progress of women especially in developing countries.
Upon graduation, I interned at a nonprofit organization that was involved in refugee and immigrant resettlement. While working there I was exposed to the gap that there is in media representation and depiction of refugees and immigrants. I realized that there is so much more to the immigrant experience that society rarely talks about. The women especially have stories that I believe are worth telling, stories that if heard, have the potential to change the way in which society as a whole perceives and receives immigrants. The internship rekindled in me the desire to be a journalist. After that experience, I knew undoubtedly that I had to use my writing to shed light on the women who had the spotlight turned away from them.
One of my close friends told me about Voices of Our Future via email. I signed up as soon as I read the description of VOF. To me it felt like an aligning of stars. Here I was with the desire to tell life changing stories but no real direction on how I to do it- then an opportunity is presented to me. Through VOF, I believe that I will be able to hone my writing skills while being armed with the necessary tools that are needed in order to be an effective societal transformer. This is a platform that will provide me with the foundation that is necessary for me to go forth and truly become a voice for our future both through my writing and in policy making.