Wairimu Munyinyi-Wahome is an amazing and fearless woman who works for the Coalition on Violence Against Women (COVAW). She is a Kenyan advocacy and policy specialist and has worked in Namibia, Somaliland, Sierra Leone and is now working in her homeland Kenya again. Wairimu speaks about her work and the issues that women face in Kenya, especially when it comes to female genital mutilation (FGM) and the lack of implementation when it comes to the laws that are in place. She tells me what she loves about her work and what gives her hope in the fight for gender equality.
Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Christian Adams is an amazing and fearless woman who works for SisterSong, an organization that works to strengthen and amplify the collective voices of indigenous women and women of color to achieve reproductive justice. With over 14 years of social work experience and as a lifelong advocate for women and children, Christian speaks about the struggles that black communities face in America and how to change it. In Atlanta, Georgia, at the headquarters of SisterSong she shares some of her stories as well. To support Sistersong and the amazing work they do, go sistersong.net and become a member today.
Saint Petersburg, Russia
In Saint Petersburg in Russia, I talked to fearless woman Varya Mikhailova. She participates in Eve’s Ribs (Рёбра Евы), a feminist project that tries to change public opinion by showing that discrimination against women is a key problem which affects each and every one of us. They fight the patriarchy and gender stereotypes by drawing the attention of the audience with provocative art. They got a lot of attention and unfortunately harassment as well when last year they started Simona, a space with female-only hours where women can work and co-work safely. Varya tells me about how she became a feminist, what feminism means to her and the struggles of women in Russia.
Paula Cosme Pinto
Paula Cosme Pinto is a fearless Portuguese woman and journalist. She writes a daily feminist column for Expresso newspaper with the ironic name: 'A vida de saltos altos' which means 'Life in high heels'. In Lisbon, she explains how she turned a column about make-up and beauty tips at first, into a very popular column about gender equality. Readers contact her with questions that tie to the issues that women face in Portugal. We talk about the progressive laws Portugal has and changes that still need to be made in order to reach gender equality.
Joanna Palmowska is a fearless woman who lives in Shanghai and started Ladyfest Shanghai with a cool group of women. Ladyfest is a celebration of female empowerment that aims to promote a dialogue for gender equality. It calls upon the local community to join in supporting freedom of self-expression and to exchange experiences and visions of femininity and equality. Joanna tells me how and why she started Ladyfest in Shanghai. As much as we can, we talk about gender equality in China and what it's like to live in Shanghai.
Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Fiona Phie is an Indonesion-American fearless woman studying political science and international relations. She is the executive director at March For Our Lives: Boston, a youth organization working to dismantle gun violence and the systems of white supremacy that perpetuate violence. We talk about gun violence and it’s important relation to gender and why emphasizing communities of colour who are disproportionately affected by gun violence is so important. Fiona shares her own experiences with domestic violence and gun violence while growing up in East Boston. She tells me about her mother, her activism, the importance of communication and we discuss important steps towards the system building and system breaking that is needed to end gun violence.
Buenos Aires, Argentina
Cecilia works at graffitimundo , a nonprofit organization entirely run by women in Buenos Aires. By working with local artists and giving tours they try to connect people and share local urban art with the rest of the world. In one of their galleries called Galeria Union, Cecilia talks about how graffitimundo started and how it aims to let people revalue Argentinian culture and art in the public space. Furthermore, we talk about Argentina's suffering under dictatorship and how it formed political activism and the feminist movement today. We talk about the symbols feminists have used and are using nowadays in their struggle for legal abortion.
Kaitlyn wonjung chang
Kaitlyn is a Vice President at Women of Vienna, the biggest community for women in Vienna. In my living room, she first talks about how she became involved with this community and how she helped it grow from 40 to 17000 members. She also works as a COO at a creative agency in Vienna (Kobza and The Hungry Eyes) and advises startups on how to become more female-friendly and diverse. In the second part of this episode, we talk about the issues that women face within the tech startup scene and within Austria specifically.
Kaitlyn recommends reading the book "Brotopia, breaking up the boys' club of Silicon Valley" written by Emily Chang.
Nada is a transgender activist, who laid the groundwork for Thai transgender students to get official documents according to the gender they have chosen. When studying law at a prestigious university in Northern Thailand her classmates got their graduation certificates. Hers was denied because the photo she had provided did not show her in a male-specific way. She tells how she successfully petitioned her university to issue her certification of graduation according to the gender identity she has chosen, on the basis of her rights rather than mental illness. She furthermore talks about the sexual abuse and struggles she faced in her youth and how she overcame her depression and found her purpose in life. She explains how she finally even reconnected to her parents and why she is now hoping to become a member of parliament in the coming national election in Thailand.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Devika founded 'Stem op een Vrouw' (Vote for a Woman), her work enhances the number of women elected and running for office in The Netherlands. A returning theme in her work is identifying flaws in our democracy and offering solutions.
She recommends reading The Girl With All the Gifts by MC Carey.
Salt Lake City, Utah, USA
Stephanie is a tireless advocate for social justice and inclusive policies. She founded the Utah Women's Coalition - a statewide, nonpartisan group working to advance the status of Utah women through public policy. In November 2018, she was elected to the Utah House of Representatives.
She recommends reading Anne-Marie Slaughter's article Why Women Still Can't Have It All.