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MY PHOTO MY VOICE let your pictures tell the story.

‘Many are called but few are choosen’whatever that means in this context???but these are the words of a young Cameroonian woman Jingla Forgiveness Atanga who hails from the North West region of the country ahe posted these lines beneath a picture which she uploaded on facebook on the 25th of march 2014. Unlike most Cameroonian girls who would rather upload sophisticated photos of themselves wearing the most fashionable outfits or the most expensive hair,Jingla uploaded this picture of herself on face book.
It is no news that facebook is a social network site and that most people consider it a leisure activity and just like most people, Cameroonian women would rather spend hours chatting on facebook with friends and uploading pictures of themselves in the most beautiful outfits; fashionable clothes and shoes, and latest hair do’s just so they attract attention and their friends and admirers can see where they are and what they have become lately. This is not a bad thing; it is a good thing especially when it helps the girls to boost their self esteem and when all the nice comments come after these pictures it makes these girls self confident, something which should be encouraged.
When I first saw Jingla’s photo, I wasn’t surprised for several reasons, and the first statement I made was ‘this girl will never change’, and I am sure that several people who know Jingla said similar things when they first saw this photo. Of course she would never change because she is just being herself, she is representing the true “who she is and what she has been up to lately”. I decided to look beyond what I saw on the photo, of course I saw a young girl wearing a white t-shirt and a green pair of shorts and black socks, standing in a farm and holding a bag on her shoulders. what I read was;a girl returning from the farm after a huge harvest, a Cameroonian woman marketing the value of agriculture(something which is not common), the smile on her face tells me she is a woman with amazing strengths who is happy about what she has done but the smile doesn’t look satisfactory, this tells me she probably has a worry as regards her activity. This picture would have different interpretations from different people because a picture speaks more than a thousand words, but the picture is more than just a story, it is the first step to facilitating the solution to the common problems we face as women in Africa. Thanks to the inspiration I got from this photo, you may now share your own photos of violence against women on SHE Platform, Let our photos tell the story.
Thanks to china most Women and girls now own a mobile phone which has a camera. It should never really be about the sad side of it but even better if we can identify our problems. I identified a better way of spreading the word and facilitating the solutions to our problem of violence against women (I hope this is really a better way), given that people like to share photos rather than write an advocacy message on facebook. World pulse identified a better way of raising women’s voices; using technology and that’s why we are all here to explore ways of making life better for women.

This story was written for World Pulse’s Women Weave the Web Digital Action Campaign. Learn more »

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Raquel Jacobs's picture

Moved to tears

I am sooooo touched... In fact I will search for Jingla Forgiveness Atanga and add her on Facebook. She is such an inspiration. You too just inspired me. For taking out time to write this about this girl gives me hope that there are people out there who don't blow their trumpet but praise other people for the little things.

Well done,

Sisterly,

Raquel

Raquel Jacobs
Beyond the Classroom Foundation

*BTC is committed to improving the teaching and learning of less privileged children in public schools* 
Blog: www.beyonddclassroom.blog.com
Twitter: @BTC_Foundation
FB: https://www.facebook.com/pages/B

Ngobesing Linda's picture

Best wishes

Hi Raquel,
its nice to know that you are inspired.you are also and inspiration for many women and girls out there,I encourage you to share your story via pictures too.We all may not have similar stories or photo's but we all have stories to share,so whether it is joy or violence or you think your self a role model that others can emulate,you may attach a story to your pictures and share.There are lots of reports coming in from Nigeria on violence against women,especially now that Boko Haram has decided to leave us helpless by taking away the lives of some of our sisters,daughters,friends and relatives,we sharing photos of violence on. https://www.facebook.com/pages/SHE-Platform/275277135957729
Best wishes

Ngobesing Linda
The Voice with sound quality
queen of eloquence

phoang's picture

Thank you for sharing!

Cultural attitudes towards women and girls' access to technology do make a difference in the way they use the Internet and social media. I hope you can find other people like yourself who have taken engagement on Facebook a bit further to create an outlet for women to share their stories beyond leisure (which is also important). There are many resources, and organizations you can connect with to help expand the way technology is used -- beyond information exchange and perhaps more for advocacy work. Good luck! -- Phuong

Hi Phoang,i have met a number of people like me who are passionate about taking the engagement on Facebook a bit further from leisure,I have also connected to a number of Facebook pages and groups which reach out to thousands of women.Thanks a lot.

Ngobesing Linda
The Voice with sound quality
queen of eloquence

I just liked her picture on Facebook. She is a beautiful woman. I learned last year that 80% of the food in the world is grown by women, and I think this is very admirable. If I had a little plot, I would be growing medicine herbs, cooking herbs, fruits and vegetables. Instead I use my computer to make a living, so I wind up inside more than I would like, but my work has had a very positive impact on my family's life and on the lives and businesses of the many women I work for. I'm glad you are suggesting ways that women can use technology to speak their minds, and photographs are a wonderful way to share important subjects online. I just liked SHE Platform and will tell my daughter Jennifer Faith about it too. I don't have any pictures related to abuse, but I will be sure to like anything I see posted there, as my daughter and I are working to end gender-based violence, too. You can find her new page on Facebook here: http://www.facebook.com/jenniferfaith61

Hi Hannah,i just hit like on Jenny;s page,its an amazing job she is doing there and i want to congratulate you on your daughters behalf.i read the first story there on five lies every battered woman of faith should stop believing.and i think that the holy spirit is speaking through Faith,its really a pleasure to see young women use Facebook to advocate and better the lives of other women out there.i would keep the conversation going,I strongly believe that if we build a network of women Using social network for Advocacy more women would live in a safer world.

Ngobesing Linda
The Voice with sound quality
queen of eloquence

hanasazi's picture

Thank you!

...for liking Jennifer's page on Facebook, for this wonderful post and the work you're doing, and for being who you are! I agree with what you said about young women using Facebook for more than just leisure, but for advocacy and to tell the stories of what life is like for them wherever they are, the challenges they face and how they are working to overcome them, many things could change and we would live in a safer world. It's easy to get trapped in the ego "stroke" that social media can provide, but if we focus on the things that really matter, these venues can give us a powerful voice that has the potential to reach many millions of people around the world. And using pictures to illustrate our messages can inspire people to share more freely so your message can travel further than without one. It's a very important point you've brought up here, and a good one to follow through with. Thanks so much for drawing our attention to it!

Oh, you might also be interested to know that there's an online service called Canva which, if one doesn't have a camera or just needs to communicate information visually, enables you to create an infographic. It's free and you do your creating online, so there's no expensive software to buy, and if you subscribe to their email list they send out messages with great information on how to use it effectively. I haven't used it much (yet), but I've been getting their informative emails. You can learn more at canva.com Go girls!

KOMoore's picture

Great story!

Dear Ngobesing ,

Thank you for telling your story in such a compelling way. Being able to see a picture is vary valuable.It is like admiring art and piecing together the story the artist had in mind.
Warm Regards,

Karen

hanasazi's picture

What a great point!

It's so true, and a great way to share with women in places where they might not be as literate as they would like to be. A picture is worth a thousand words, and much can be communicated this way. I love your comparison to art, which is also a powerful way to share ideas. I'm hoping to start two paintings soon that will have women's issues as their subjects, and I will be sure to share here at World Pulse! In fact, one of my clients creates beautiful paintings on silk, and she gave me permission to share her new "Save Our Oceans - Endangered Marine Life" series here. I hope to do that a little later today.

KOMoore's picture

Sharing Art

I'd love to see the art. I have got to connect you with a music video done by Kristin Hoffmann singing her "Song For The Ocean". You can probably find it on you tube. Her goal is to record a million people signing the chorus from all over the world.
Peace,
Karen

hanasazi's picture

Thank you Karen. I had

Thank you Karen. I had forgotten I promised to post Judy's pictures and will do that now! I will also look up the music video you mentioned and tell her about it. She's at the gallery across the street this afternoon and I need to see her anyway, so it will happen today!

ccontreras's picture

I agree!

I really liked reading your story and the reason why you picked your pictures very carefully, sharing your culture and the value you have on agriculture and women. I like that you speak about Facebook and posting pictures of girls all pretty but also to use the social networking as a platform to stop the violence against women. Also for us women to unite and work together towards peace and equality.
Peace and love! x

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

Dear Ngobesing Linda,

You told your story in a unique and compelling way by reminding us that "a picture speaks more than a thousand words" and that the picture of Jingla Forgiveness Atanga has many interpretations. I love that you were motivated and inspired by her picture to create the SHE platform on Facebook. Words and pictures together can tell the whole story!

In love and peace,
Terry Mullins

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