Breathe...For this day or the rest of it at least, be mindful and set aside some time for personal care and peace of self. If you are privileged enough to be able to go for a walk, play a board game with your son or daughter. Get your coloring book and pens out or read a book. Do anything to personally celebrate this day and the peace that comes from knowing that there are and were women before you that allowed you to be where and who you are.
They Did it for All of Us
Take a few moments to reflect on the Black women and women of color that have impacted the world through non-violent communication and peace-making. Celebrate them, for they are the women from which you want your daughters to learn. They are the women who set examples for all people, not just other women. Without weapons or harsh words, they give knowledge, wisdom, and peace-making skills to all who would pay attention.
These women peace-makers have put their lives in danger, without reservation, to give other women power. The power to learn and be educated are themes that women world-wide struggle with. There are women who are never recognized for their efforts to build peace, because of their sex and because of their skin-tones.
They are all brave women who went through death threats, war, and assassination attempts. Yet, they didn’t stop trying to bring peace to the Nations and the world. The five women on this list exemplify what it means to be peace-makers and women in a world that tries to stomp women down. Each one of them are recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize.
A few weeks ago, on this blog, you found out about the depraved and gruesome rapes happening in Liberia. From April (when COVID was declared a National Emergency) to June this year, there were over 600 rapes, with a rate that was still climbing. Those numbers themselves are staggering, but the rape-culture there is so pervasive that most victims are children and very young women. Starting in June, horrific reports were made about men brutally attacking toddlers. It was then that women and men in Liberia empowered themselves to stage a peaceful protest from August 27th to 29th at the seat of the Capitol in Monrovia. There, rape is feared more than the pandemic raging against the world. It is a realistic fear.
Please, educate yourself about rape in Liberia and the leaders that stood against it in my previous posts on rape and the subsequent protest on this blog. The person you should hear the details of what came after is the Stella's Girls journalist Mafanta Kromah. Mafanta (pictured at right) writes for the Liberian paper, The Bush Chicken. She, Mariama Konneh, who is our Executive Director in Liberia and Stella's Girls were on the ground at the protest.
Liberian Protest Against SGBV
Rape of babies, girls, boys, and women in Liberia has been rampant for decades. Since the beginning of COVID, instances of rape have ballooned in Liberia. A month ago, over 600 cases of rape had been reported since the pandemic hit. Of those 600 cases, 100 made it to court and almost 50 were acquitted.
The rate at which reports are made of Sexual Gender-Based Violence is still on the rise. This does not include the assaults that go unreported. Nor, does it include women and children that were deceased or displaced as a result of their assault. Liberia is the size of Louisiana State, roughly 43,000 square miles.
My name is Jamie. I'm blessed to be the Creative Content Manager for Stella's Girls, Inc. where our mission is to empower young women to become leaders and social advocates in their communities.