I don’t remember the point in my life when I came to the realization that there needs to be a shift in the way women are talked about and treated in our society. I do remember my childhood when I would spend a lot of time reading newspapers, I loved and still do love the way in which words are used to weave a story. It is through reading the newspapers that I became aware of issues that women are faced with. I remember reading articles about domestic violence, forced early marriages, female genital mutilation and forced labor among others. In most of these articles women were portrayed as subhuman, in one twisted way or the other deserving what they got.
As a woman, I purposed to do everything in my power to ensure that these changed. None of us should have to face such injustices at any point in our lives regardless of what society might want us to believe. To that end my personal vision is to be a proactive individual, to change the world not only for myself but for the women that come after me. I want to be part of the change that will redefine what it means to be a woman so that generations to come regardless of gender will not tolerate any injustice against a woman.
For my community and the world, I envision tolerance and accommodation. A community that is tolerant of each other will result in the progress of not only women but everyone. In my community for example, women’s views are sometimes dismissed simply because they come from a woman. A man could say the exact same thing the next minute and society will agree with him and laud him for saying something remarkable. Additionally people who advocate for the empowering of women are ignored and sometimes classified as being individuals who simply want to overturn the social order. When in reality the issues they are raising are legitimate issues that need to be addressed. Society as a whole needs to recognize, accept and accommodate the fact that there exists a place for women outside the kitchen. It is time for women to be treated as the human beings that we are and not some lesser beings who exist solely for the functioning and musings of some other beings.
Becoming a Voices of Our Future correspondent will give me the opportunity to amplify the voices of marginalized women. It will give me a recognized and wide platform from which I can highlight the issues and challenges that women are facing while actively working with other women to find solutions and ways in which we can overcome these challenges. As a correspondent I will be able to act as a bridge between my community and other communities in an effort to promote intercultural communication which breeds understanding that is very beneficial in the women empowerment movement. I believe in the power of words and specifically in their ability to move people to become engaged in causes that they may not have otherwise been interested in.
I believe that writing and talking about women in a different and positive manner is one of the foundations in changing the way in which women are viewed. Showing that women are actively working towards addressing issues that they face sends a message that women are no longer in a subordinate role and we are not afraid to get out there and make positive contributions to our world. As a Voices of Our Future correspondent I will have access to the tools and resources that will greatly aid in raising awareness and writing stories that will change the world view of women and show that yes we are women, yes we are faced with challenges that we are actively working towards overcoming and yes while we can cook and clean, it does not mean that we are not intelligent and innovative human beings capable of changing society. It is through our stories that the world will begin to see us in a different light, a light that will change the way we are talked about.