via Fighting female genital mutilation: Education matters — World Education Blog

There are approximately 45 million girls of primary and secondary school age not going to school in sub-Saharan Africa according to the UIS – more than in any other region. Our 2017/8 report showed that across 18 countries in the region, gender-based violence, as measured by intimate partner violence, early marriage and female genital mutilation, […]

via Fighting female genital mutilation: Education matters — World Education Blog

Advertisements

via Setara Hassan: Empowering Afghan Women Through Media — Leadarise Journal

This month, Leadarise takes you to Afghanistan to meet Young Woman to Watch Setara Hassan. Setara was born in Afghanistan but fled the civil war with her family in the ’90s when she was still a child. The family first moved to Pakistan before settling in Denmark. Setara grew up influenced by both Eastern and […]

via Setara Hassan: Empowering Afghan Women Through Media — Leadarise Journal

Opinion: Domestic Violence…”You Are Not Alone” — Women of Egypt Mag

Wednesday November 29, 2017 By: Menna Doubal Body stamped with rainbow coloured bruises, dislocated shoulders, broken bones, battered souls, muted screams, silent cries, shattered voice and endless feelings of sorrow… “I was trapped. I felt like his property. I was literally just his punching bag.” Since the beginning of time, women were considered unequal to […]

via Opinion: Domestic Violence…”You Are Not Alone” — Women of Egypt Mag

The Shameful, Too Often Silent, Sexual Exploitation of Women — Retake Our Democracy via​ The Shameful, Too Often Silent, Sexual Exploitation of Women — Retake Our Democracy

Writing about the sexual exploitation of women should come from a woman, and so today’s blog comes from Roxanne. We also provide a video that educates men on the meaning of consent. Lastly, we include links to local organizations who work with women and girls who have suffered from sexual abuse.

via The Shameful, Too Often Silent, Sexual Exploitation of Women — Retake Our Democracy

Featured

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

by Hannah Joyce

I am an 18-year-old college student. Breast cancer is not something I think about. About six months ago I noticed a lump on my breast. It had a white head, so I just assumed it was a zit/cyst. I didn’t think it was anything to worry about. I casually mentioned it to my mum, she didn’t seem worried, so I just forgot about it. (At the time she didn’t fully understand that it was on my breast)  Two months ago I mentioned it to my Dad, he asked how long it had been there? I told him a while. He told me to call the doctor right away. I didn’t understand the urgency, but when he explained, the fear settled in. As I waited for the doctor come check me out the nerves began to set in. Thoughts were running through my head. Some being that I am so young, I am just entering college, I can’t have cancer. Luckily for me, it was not breast cancer. It was a cyst, but for so many women they are not as lucky as I am.

breast-cancer-graphic

‘On average, every 2 minutes a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer and 1 woman will die of breast cancer every 13 minutes.’

Let’s breakdown some common myths. The following things do not cause breast cancer…

  • Caffeine
  • Deodorant
  • Microwaves
  • Cell Phones

I am sure we have all heard ‘don’t put your phone in your bra, you will get breast cancer.’ This terrified me for years until I educated myself concerning the topic of breast cancer.

 

Let’s talk about prevention, how can you take care of yourself….

  1. Self Exams – It is recommended that women regularly exam their breasts (Once a month) to make sure there is nothing alarming going on. And you can for sure make this fun, set some time aside every month and treat yourself. This could be a bubble bath or anything your heart desires to make the examining of your breasts a little bit more enjoyable.

 

  1. Seeing your doctor on a regular basis (Usually once a year). As ladies, we all know how much of a pain it is to get those pelvic exams/pap smears, but they are NECESSARY and very IMPORTANT. It’s the boring self-care that we have to do. But it could save your life in the long run.

 

  1. Mammogram time! Mammograms are suggested for ladies over 40 years old. They are to be done yearly. I know my own mom doesn’t really like these, but this is another tool that is available to us. This could be the difference between life and death.

 

The above information was found in an online booklet provided by the National Breast Cancer Foundation, it is completely free. 

To get your own copy, click here

Sources for Article

www.nationalbreastcancer.org

Image Source: Loquitur

 

Featured

Women on Writing – Enthusiastic and Sad Life Lessons that We Should Read

by Vanessa Daniela

This summer, I have read fascinating books that expanded my knowledge about society,  cultures and human rights. I can not deny how shocked, sick, or enthusiastic I was after some chapters on these books.

For some of them, you will need to have a thick skin to read thru pages of torture and suffering, but all of them are life lessons. Before I talk about them, I want to congratulate the female authors and those who fight for human rights. Also, my deepest condolences to those who lost their daughters and family members.


Until We Are Free – My Fight for Human Rights in Iran by Sherin Ebadiimages

Shirin Ebadi is a human rights lawyer, former judge and has been defending families against the regime in Iran. She is the first Muslim woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

One of her most remarkable battles was to change the child custody laws in Iran after Arian Golshani, 9-year-old was beaten to death by her father and stepmother. The Iranian law favors the men over women, so Golshani was not allowed to stay with her mother after her parents’ divorce.

Following Ebadi’s  journey thru this book, it gave me a unique perspective and an amazing knowledge about Iran.

The regime has been violating the human rights by torturing people to extract information about anything useful to the government. It is an inspiring and sad book, but totally worth reading.

Click here to read more about Shirin Ebadi


I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai with Patricia McCormick

Malala is one of the bravest girls that I have heard of. She stood up for education even 51dVLcrS0gL._SX321_BO1,204,203,200_when she faced Taliban death threats and after the attack that caused her eternal marks. Despite the brutal attempt, she raised stronger after it.

“We were scared, but our fear was not as strong as our courage.”
Malala Yousafzai, I Am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban

Malala is the youngest Nobel Prize Winner.

I applaud her parents for supporting her studies and dreams. According to Taliban, Pakistan culture, and religion, girls should not be educated, but be married at an early age and dedicated to their husbands and house work.

Click here to read more about Malala Yousafzai


O Diario de uma Escrava by Ro Mierling – The Slave’s Diary capa-diario-de-uma-escrava

This book is based on real stories of girls that were sexually abused by a psychopath that kidnaps girls and uses them as his object. I read for study purpose, but I wanted to throw up after every chapter. I couldn’t believe how some people can be so heartless.

According to statistics, in Brazil, every year, 40,000 minors disappear, and a third of them are used for sexual purpose. Usually, they leave without leaving a trace.

DO NOT READ, if you went thru any kind of sexual abuse. However, It is an excellent book for parents and teenagers as a watch out. Breaking parents’ rules and curfews, and talking to strangers on the internet can be a lapse with permanent marks.

…”please watch over them and guard them again mistakes of youth that are unalterable.” Powerful Prayers of Protection

Click here to learn more about Rô Mierling


The Crossroads of Should and Must: Find and Follow Your Passion by Elle Luna 51I6aeJYqlL._SX325_BO1,204,203,200_

 

Elle Luna is an artist, designer, and writer who challenge us to think outside of the box and push ourselves to reflect on the conflict between our passions and our money maker job.

Reflective words, messages combined with an inspiring touch of art bloomed my creativity and put me ready to work on my craft.

“Should is how other people want us to live our lives. It’s all of the expectations that others layer upon us.”

 

 

Click here to read more about Elle Luna

Image Source

Amazon

Dark Side Books

Editora Sextante

 

 

 

 

 

 

II Poetry Contest: Poems from India

Sewa is an organization that provides education for girls in Gujarati, India. These poems were written by Sewa’s students.

I Poem: Our Country

In the ocean of these relations

There’s one relation that is unique, that which I love…

Which I repeatedly recall day and night

Where the sand of sand dunes of desert
Fly around to make new sand dunes

The smell of that sand
Is what I can still feel today
As soon the rain drops pour down, it gets soaked up

Completely, in that ocean of sand
There’s is one relationship that is unique, that which I love…

I remember the crowdedness of those streets
Carts, scooters, auto rickshaws and those buses
Somewhere there were cows and at other places, the goats
They would swing and walk
Somewhere you would hear the noise of sacks filled with vegetables

They were the light of those streets
Were the sign of the population
Where we dreamt when asleep and awake
Of fairies and prince

Where there was humanity and honesty

There is pride

There was pride in one’s own earnings

Where there was glory of virtues
Where there was light because of festivals

This is my country and I am its

This is my country and I am its

This bond is unbreakable, this wouldn’t change

This relation that is the most unique
Which I love the most

 


II Poem: Where women are independent

There is every moment of happiness

Is being raised our princess

But why is she scared today
Even though it isn’t her fault, yet she is embarrassed

Why sons don’t undergo such stringency

We have raised our voice today
This fight is for equality
This is unfair

No one should stop us, no one should accost us

This is the fight for our existence
But who has begun this fire of inequality
Even though the fault is not of oneself

She is yet embarrassed today
Where even the mother is scared for her
But
There today
The daughters have raised their voice
Why are today the restrictions enforced only on us

Why sons don’t have have to face such harshness
This is unfair
This fight is for equality
This is the fight for our existence
No one should stop us, no one should accost us
I have reached that height today
Where there is an honest earning
It is a fight for our justice
The strength of my sisters lay in the wings
March forward, march forward
In this there lies the betterment of the family There is height in the society

There is height in the society
There’s independence today
In our homes
In our country and in family
No one should stop us, no one should accost us

The one who distributed all her rights of living Neither in bread nor in clothes
Either in education nor in illness
Neither was she remembered in wealth

We all are her debtors


III Poem: Invaluable diamond

The one who gave up life even before birth
Is there anyone who is responsible for it
Whom god had created to be magnanimous since birth

The one who distributed all her rights of living

Neither in bread nor in clothes

Either in education nor in illness

Neither was she remembered in wealth

We all are her debtors

The childhood passed and so did youth, the aged eyes saw darkness

Yet on one from us took up responsibility of this
Today, that daughter only, is the music of our lives
The one who has brightened the lives of her family

Became independent and made discoveries

Has opened the doors to her own destiny
Sisters have become partners of each other
Have taken care of all the burdens of life
After toiling and struggling she has become understanding

Let us all accept today
That only she is our sparking invaluable diamond


 

IV Poem: There was brightness on all four sides of Chamanpur’s crossroads…

Will the moon’s brightness remain caged in the four wall only

on the face was the stole, and chameli in the hair, and in the middle were the stove and grinder

this was no one but kamla’s  free-spiritedness
she came to me with glitter and sparkle

hopping and jumping she came to me

take me to the academy one day,
I shall wait for you and that chance, When that day arrived,

When that day arrived,

There entailed series of questions such as what is it? Why is it? Sometimes on telephone and sometimes on phone Sometimes on camera and sometimes on monitor

Sometimes on telephone and sometimes on phone Sometimes on camera and sometimes on monitor

Sometimes on camera and sometimes on monitor
Posed many questions

She blushed seeing herself smiling on the T.V.
She waited a moment and then erupted such a flame

On the face of chamanpur’s fire, rested some silence

Can this computer, phone and camera

Not be in the hands of mine

I do not wish to make cigars and sell vegetables

Give these weapons to me also once
Then you see my beauty and fairness
How do I use my thoughts for outsiders

In that there will be matters pertaining my sisters and sometimes that of my dreams too
I will jot down sometimes the violence shown to my sisters

Someday it will become weapons of my livelihood

This incident occurred seven years back

The fire of chamnapur
Our free spirited and our dream’s beauty

Today, she has kindled the fire of passion and enthusiasm In thousands, has the battalion of girls become ready.


V Poem: We want neither poverty not inequality

We shall break this wall
Which separates us from each other
This is a cry for peace, we shall break this wall of differentiation

That which brings inequality in earnings, which brings shortfalls in employment
In the helplessness of hunger, in the illness of children
We fight each day in this epidemic

This nothingness in our identity
Have lost our land and our roofs
Today it is the relationship that has rocked it In this fight of creed and caste,
Let us break this wall of inequality

This is a cry for peace
Do you think that the battle has calmed down
Have the weapons been let down
No o siste , e ha e ’t hea d the all of pea e
When the peace shall prevail, there will be earning in villages and streets, our lands shall also become fertile
Beauty shall not be an unknown
Men and women shall become equal. The country shall awaken There resounds a cry for peace in every household

II Poetry Contest: Chutki the smartest

by Vaishnavi Sai

Chutki the smartest

Granny sang all the way

Chutki the bravest

Chutki the bravest

Daddy was always right

She kept dancing in her yellow skirt

She played a lot, till the ribbons left her braid

Chutki liked ice candy

lemon,mango, orange, and rose

He got her all four of them

Uncle Joe, Uncle Joe

Sweetest man, sweetest man

He showed her his magic tricks

He played all the sshhhh!!! games

Games which were new to her

Games which were no fun to her

Chutki knew that granny lied,

She wasn’t the smartest

And dada was wrong

She wasn’t the bravest

At 15, she cut the princess cake and wished for a knight

He didn’t have a white horse nor a castle made of glass
All she wanted was a heart of gold
His one was rather cold
Fairytale gone wrong
Chutki wasn’t the smartest

Chutki wasn’t the bravest

At 25, her parents liked him
Arranged marriage comes at a price

They got him a car, which her dad never had

They got him a house, just like the one she drew

Granny said that he was the smartest

Dad said that he was the bravest

Granny didn’t lie
Dada wasn’t wrong

As he was smart with the abuses ,

And brave with the leather belt

He ordered for a cute xy

But all he gave her was an x

She knew that her baby girl would never be the smartest

The baby girl would never be the bravest

As the saree tightened around the ceiling fan

Two heartbeats ceased at once

Chutki wasn’t the smartest

Chutki wasn’t the bravest

II Poetry Contest: As I write this, I think about all the incidents where I blamed someone…

By Vaishnavi Sai

As I write this, I think about all the incidents where I blamed someone
It was my fault
All my fault

The day the motor cycle guy spanked me
It was my fault
I was walking on the FOOTPATH
That time when the cab driver adjusted his rear view mirror
It was my fault
I have a FACE
That time when he kept falling on me intentionally
It was my fault
I boarded a public transport BUS
That time when a professor sent me an obscene message
It was my fault
I carried a PHONE
That time when an old man masturbated outside the girl’s school
It was our fault
We were wearing UNIFORMS
That time, when a 60 year old man raped a 7 year old girl
It was her fault
She wore a cute short pink FROCK
That time when my drunk, abusive husband got on me
Ssshhhh!!!! I forgot!!!
Marital rape DOESN’T exist
Sorry, my fault
I wish I belonged to the era
When VIRGIN mother Mary gave birth and the world rejoiced
All these new rules in the name of religion
Even God must be laughing at us

That time when I went for the new year bash
It was my fault
I wanted to CELEBRATE
I wish they didn’t issue passes for women
I wish the new day didn’t start at 12:00 am -the hour at which I am not supposed to be on the roads
How can I argue with men when some from my gender also tell me it’s my fault
Feminism, hahahhaha
Equality ?
How can I call it equal?
When a group of men tried to grope me
I tried
I tried
I used my nails, my bag, my teeth and my heels
I failed
Like always
It was my fault
That I was born a woman
The way you like to call me
A shameless one