Sunday, 23 June 2013

'Empowered Women' Afternoon Tea

“It’s not what you call me, but what I answer to.” -African proverb 

I had been working with colleagues to put on this event for a quite a while. I couldn't be more relieved when it finally happened. It was great! During the day there were important talks given by a number of inspiring Somali Women including a journalist, a lawyer, a film-maker and a politician. There were also a number of videos shown on key topics such as FGM and GBV. The event was in aid of Somali Women's higher education and all the money raised on the day will go towards university scholarships, enabling bright young women to continue on studying their chosen subjects, some of which include Veterinary Science, Law and Shariah. 

The latter part of the day focused on the spirituality and creativity on Somali women, with moving performances by young Somali poets, there was also singing and dancing.

The turn-out was pretty good (around 70 women came) and the atmosphere was incredible. The highlights of the day for me, were the poetry performances by Farah G and Fatima Abdul and also the talk given by film-maker Sadia Ahmed who I had been liaising with for a while. Her documentary trailer on the journey of rape victims was really affecting and created a lot of passionate discussion.

I also really enjoyed meeting so many inspiring and interesting women! And failing miserably at dancing Somali-style! I was so chuffed that I got to wear a dirac to the event, traditional Somali dress. I kept tripping up on it, but it was so cool! the attire, the people, the culture! I finally feel like I've passed the initiation period and have officially made that transition to Somali!

For those of you not familiar with Farah Gabdon's work, it's worth checking out her website, she's a truly talented poet...

Just as we don’t all run at the same speed, we don’t all peak at the same time. Don’t compare yourself to anyone else. Do you, be calm, be easy. When your time comes, your light will be blinding! -Farah Gabdon favourite pic of the day...