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VOF WEEK 2: Finding MY VOICE

Surviving a near death experience as a teenager in the year 2000 religious crisis in northern Nigeria and seeing my parents struggle to see us through our education which they believed would give us an edge for a better life has rekindled in me a sense of responsibility for my society.
Studying a language course at the university led me to discover the power of words and the media to change the world. I ventured into campus journalism and I have written feature stories about girls that are breaking out of the stereotypical thinking of the society and leading in business, politics and academics. I have had cause to do investigative reports on sexual harassment and also write on women’s participation in politics. What I find interesting about seeing my story published in a national newspaper is the ability for my voice to be heard even in places where I lest envisaged. One of the touching responses I got was from a girl who said I have shown her that one does not need to use ‘big grammar’ before they can lend their voice. This is the message I want to preach that women can make their voices heard by acts of courage that defiles conventional thinking. And that man themselves can see that ‘these girls mean business’!
For me, journalism is a call to social responsibility. No one can tell the stories of women like we ourselves. This is an area where I find the opportunity provided by World Pulse to be optimal and apt at this time of digital communication which has the ability to break the barrier of distance by opening up new frontiers. I can relate to the story of World Pulse because of the connection of courage. It was this type of courage that prompted me to collaborate with my fellowship at the university to organize a two days outreach at Famia village in Osun state where we distributed relief materials, drugs and provided counseling services. This particular experience opened my eyes to the need to empower rural women, especially in the area of reproductive health. It was also courage that enabled me to do a research on my campus on the reasons why many girls do not often hold tangible positions in students’ parliaments. The story titled ‘Beauty and the Ballot’, published by The Nation Newspaper, Nigeria won me the Campus Life politics reporter. Now that I am out of the university, I am pursuing an internship programme where I offer services for gratis all because I want to be a voice on how governance and policy, terrorism, climate change and environmental issues affect women.
With World Pulse, I find a ground for collaboration; one that encourages me to go out and speak for the inarticulate and the submerged. World Pulse is where I find my voice.

Comments

pelamutunzi's picture

inspiring

keep up the interesting work m inspired by your efforts and hard work

we may be powerless to stop an injustice but let there never be a time we fail to protest.
regards
pela

Hannah Ojo's picture

Thank you

Thank you sister, courage is the thing that we need to be able to make the world a better place and inspire others to action.

H.O. Verve

Frances Faulkner's picture

Inspired

Hannah -

I really love the line, "one does not need to use ‘big grammar’ before they can lend their voice." The more barriers we remove, the more voices we will hear.

You have done a great job layering your experience in with passion and collaboration to start on a path of meaningful social change. Keep up the great work!

Frances

npirnie's picture

You mean business!

I love your passion for what you do and so glad you found your voice. Your passion for your work comes through in the way you write. You are clearly one of the women "who means business"! Keep up the great work. I look forward to reading more.

Best,

Noelle

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