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jags_83

About Me: 

Hi! I am Gaya :)

I have had great experiences in my very fortunate life, although, I have simultaneously experienced discrimination (colour, gender/sex, race). Having had wonderful people and opportunities around me, it provided positive reinforcement, thus keeping these issues far away from me.

Throughout my life, I have recognised and have personally seen other women around me who have not had a good life at many levels for various reasons. Why? Was my star luckier than theirs? I don't know. But in the practical world, I need to do my best to create a space where women can have positive experiences in their lives. I have to do my part to remove barriers such as social, cultural, economic, civil and political discrimination and inequalities that women face. They deserve their rights and access to opportunities to have a good life in this amazing world (of course it has its ups and downs!).

One of the ways to achieve this is by creating change in the (not like-minded) people around me - their thoughts and actions. I live in a country that is viewed by onlookers as a very lucky haven (we are of course in many ways) yet we are unable to exercise our freedom of association and expression safely. We have been ruled by years of oppression which is evident in a one party governance since 1957 and a one man leadership for over 20 years. We are now approaching a major election period which may create positive change or potentially threaten our stability. There is much to write about these interesting times in Malaysia as print media only publishes one side of the story! Malaysia has many untold stories ranging from our rich history to our corrupt government, yet only what is only deemed necessary or important by the government is told. Women being the second class citizens of this patriarchal society need to push through another layer of discrimination/inequality in order for their issues to be prioritised. I want to be able to voice out the issues of these women freely and objectively (as far as possible).

Writing is not my forte but I believe it can be strengthened. Through this excellent initiative, I hope I can achieve that. I believe that social and popular media is the way to move forward and with increased access to the internet by the day, so many people can be reached out to.

My Passions: 
Women's human rights - focusing on migrants, refugees/asylum seekers, TIP
My Challenges: 
Seeking innovative methods to create change in people's thoughts and actions
My Vision for the Future: 
Every person has access to an equal share of the world
My Areas of Expertise: 
CEDAW, capacity building training, language
My Languages: 
English, Malay, Tamil, Portuguese

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