Four years later...

Posted November 4, 2016

In response to her 'Because You are a Girl' blog -  four years later Strong Girl Strong World council member Aaliyah shares the following piece: 

Four years later and I’ve managed to heighten my amount of passion for social justice issues and girl’s rights to education.  Yet I can still remember my young eyes looking through the Because I Am a Girl website and reading about the injustices that plague the world in which we live. I remember conjuring up strong emotions that rocked me at the core and sickened me at the pit of my stomach. I remember my bottom lip quivering, my eyes forming tears and most of all, just the rage that filled me.  Reading the stories of the other girls is what hurt the most. Story after story filled me with a new ounce of rage that couldn’t be contained. I am a girl. I could be getting treated like this – no wait in fact I am! As a young girl I arrive on the door step of the YWCA’s summer program and I quickly developed into a sponge, soaking up information on the barriers that faced women and problems the rest of the world chooses to ignore.  Soon when I couldn’t contain it anymore, a wave of questions and solutions erupted from inside me.

We can fix this, I thought to myself. We are human beings! Let’s move beyond gender, we are all human, made for the same organs and amino acid sequences, we are all human for {diety}'s sake! It makes no sense why there should be any division. I make no sense why people should be held back from their true potential!  But of course like every other thing in this world nothing is that simple.  I’m happy to say that through the YWCA and just being surrounded by awesome people, I’ve gotten opportunities to share my views with other girls and on a number of occasions advocated for girls education in my community. Things are not any better in my parents country unfortunately, and simple solutions for equality are still being ignored but I just want to say to whoever’s reading this, is that’s why there are people like you me and my younger self. People, whose emotions are so strong that they baffle those that surround them. People who shed tears for the millions of girls who are forced into arranged marriages and denied education. Its people like us who are responsible for carry that momentum. So my name is Aaliyah, I’m 17 years old  and hopefully, a few years from now my passion wouldn’t have dimmed and hopefully all these oppressive {individuals} would’ve woken up. Peace. 

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