August 15, 2011
I'm a young Australian feminist woman. For the past four years I have worked for YWCA Victoria, the state member association of the YWCA Australia and an active part of the World YWCA movement. Through my work at the Y creatively engaging with young women and developing their sense of personal potential and power I gained the confidence myself to start putting my thoughts and opinions out there and share my experiences working with Victorian young women. I started feminaust.org a website for young Australian feminists earlier in 2011 with a friend and have since then started working for the Equality Rights Alliance on a website of their own for young Australian feminism.
Earlier this year I was incredibly lucky to be chosen to be one of 30 activists from around the world to attend the CREA Sexuality, Gender and Rights Institute in Istanbul where I blew my mind on the amount and intensity of learning I experienced regarding sexuality, gender and rights. From there I went straight to YWCA World Council in Zurich where I represented Australia as a young woman at the Young Women's Leadership Dialogue, International Women's Summit and World Council. I spent the majority of my time at these events meeting people and absorbing the intense level of information that was coming to me as well as sharing my experiences of creating safe spaces for young women to explore their potential.
In the second half of this year I will be continuing to develop and expand feminaust as a space for all feminist viewpoints to be aired and discussed as well as expanding my YWCA Victoria FlyGirl to work with young women at risk of dropping out of school. I work in collaboration with a circus trainer to develop confidence, positive risk taking and the connection the girls have with their bodies and hope to start a small research project into the ways that circus can enhance personal development education in young women.
This year I will also be launching Melbourne's very own Hollaback website (and online space to tackle street harrassment) with a friend and "in my spare time" entering a number of dressage competitions with my pony Missy.
I'm very excited about the opportunity to take part in this project and look forward to the challenges it brings!