Sunday, 14 September 2014

A Secret Safe to Tell - a must read for every child

www.naomihunter.com.au
Meet a young girl, something terrible has been done to her and she is forced to keep it a secret. Will she ever be free again? You and your child can go through the journey with her in the book ‘A Secret Safe to Tell.’

The book explores the challenge a child faces when lured into doing something they shouldn’t by someone they trust. This book will encourage children to open up to a trusted adult and let them know that no matter how afraid they are or difficult their problem seems, help is available.

A Secret Safe to Tell is a picture book that appeals to a child because of its bright colors and also easily guides the adult with the accompanying short sentences. The illustrations in the book stand out, allowing sole focus on the characters and what they are experiencing in each scene.

The character guides us step by step through, from before the ordeal until after without putting focus to a sole issue even though it can clearly be deduced. This is a good step because it gives an opening to the reader, parent, educator or child to weave the childs personal story with it and still come to the same conclusion as in the story.

Every child’s story is different and A Secret Safe to tell brings to life the tale of a young girl in a way that every child struggling with an issue can relate. It also ends in the way every child who has faced abuse should have their story end – without abuse and with hope.

A Secret Safe to Tell is very resourceful and needs to be read, understood and used by every child. Most appealing is that at the end of the book are listed helpline numbers a child can contact whenever they face a problem. 

Even so, this book is not only for the child, educator or parent. It relates to all those who are having a hard time coming out when facing abuse. Pick your copy today



About Author


Naomi with her husband Jeremy and their daughter
Naomi Hunter, author of A Secret Safe to tell is a wife, mother and advocate. She is a passionate about children's picture books and writes to empower and nurture her audience through sensitive topics.

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Wednesday, 10 September 2014

The Women Inspiration Series: Trisha Prabhu

This article was written by Zenith via UN Volunteers


Chapter 2 – Trisha Prahbu (United States)

For the second inspiring story I decided to delve in upon, is the story of a 13 years old girl, Trisha Prabhu from the United States. She has invented a program that has been proven to be highly successful in encouraging cyber bullies to think twice before posting any offensive comments online. Her project has won her a spot as one of Google’s 15 Global Science Fair finalists.


Trisha Prabhu

Prahbu created a system called Rethink to test her hypothesis; if teens are forced to take a moment of reflection before posting a mean comment, they won't do it. Rethink included a content filtering system which screens for abusive words and phrases in messages, and posts a warning asking the user if they are sure they want to post a message including them before it is sent.

It turned out that in 94.43% of her 533 trials, the student decided not to post the comment.

After proving her hypothesis, Prabhu wants to create a real product that could work with social media sites and apps that would filter messages that were potentially mean or hurtful, and alert senders to take an extra second to think before posting. 

"I am looking forward to a future where we have conquered cyber-bullying!" she writes in her projects description.

Cyber-bullying is no foreign term in today’s world, especially with the proliferation of technology across the globe, and increasing availability and improvements of hardware devices that link people to the internet world 24/7. The data for cyber-bullying can sometimes be shrilling especially when one looks into the number of innocent lives lost to cyber-bullying incidents.

Based on statistics gathered online, The Cyberbullying Research Center had concluded from a series of surveys that:
·         Approximately 50% of young people have experienced some form of cyber bullying and 10-20% experience it regularly
·         Girls are at least as likely as boys to be cyber bullies or their victims
·         Cyber bullying victims are more likely to have low self esteem and to consider suicide

Ultimately, it is really to prevent the loss of young precious lives, such as Ryan Halligan, Amanda Todd, and many others who have or have not been reported by the media.

In this realm, there are various arguments regarding which gender is more likely to be the bully or the victim. But I believe that’s not really the case at hand. Through the story of Prabhu, we have seen yet another amazing lady who has taken ‘global issues’ and put in place a simply effective solution.

Being women, doesn’t mean we are “lesser”. The capability to make a difference to the world doesn’t depend on age, and definitely not gender. Prabhu is only 13 and a girl. But she has definitely proved the world that she is here to make a positive change. 


This article was written by Zenith Chua via UN Volunteering service.


ABOUT AUTHOR
Zenith is in her senior year at Singapore Management University, majoring in strategic management and organizational behavior & human resources. Beyond school, she learns from various MOOCs (massive open online courses), so as to satisfy her seemingly ever growing desire for knowledge. Setting academics apart, she is an active UN Volunteer with various NGOs around the world, as well as a dragonboat paddler. 

Firmly driven by her life motto, "To Live, Not Just Exist", Zenith is always on the move for new ideas and opportunities to fulfill her not-so-humble ambition of changing the world to be a better place for all.


You may also like to read:

The Women Inspiration Series: Wong Li Lin

Nada: The Woman who Persevered through Life

The Difficulties of Feminism

Friday, 5 September 2014

The Women Inspiration Series: Wong Li Lin

This article was written by Zenith via UN Volunteers


Chapter 1 – Wong Li Lin (Singapore)

If we were to talk about inspirational figures, many at times, the immediate names that appear in conversations would probably be people like Nelson Mandela, Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, or even Barack Obama. However, to find the simple inspirational female figures in our daily lives, will probably be much tougher.

So given this is my first blog post, I wish to start a series – to find the inspirational stories of women around the world, and share it with everyone. And where can be a better place to begin, than my own country; Singapore.


The lady I wish to introduce today is Wong Li Lin. She is a well-known actress and host of the local media industry and also a ballerina. Recently, she has also been appointed as Community Chest Ambassador, and Lifestyle Health Advisor, teaching people how to eat healthy as well as exercise properly, and providing consultancy services, beyond being a media personality. 


Wong Li Lin

However, it’s much more than her success that makes her an inspiration. It’s her resilience.

Since 2 years old, she was fostered to different families, and had also witnessed fights when she was at brothels and gambling dens. She only returned to live with her troubled family when she was 6 years old.

In an email interview, she mentioned that: “They were very unstable times. I lived mostly in and out of gambling dens, and I grew up with prostitutes, gamblers and thieves.”

At 8 years old, she first saw the inside of a brothel when her mum went to visit a friend.

At 10 years old, she witnessed her first fatal fight.

Despite such a traumatic childhood, when looking back, she described her childhood as colorful and dramatic, and that it was because she got to meet people from different walks of life that she had the opportunity to learn and study human behavior from a young age.

Upon returning from London after receiving a scholarship to the Royal Ballet School in London, she found out that her parents and split up and moved away – and no one told her. However, she was not bitter and remains grateful for all the benefactors in her life (her ballet teacher and the ballet community).

Now she is helping troubled youths and in her own words, “I had a tough childhood, so I understand what these youth are going through”.

Just last year (2013), she ended her marriage of 9 years and is now a single mum of 2 children. Nonetheless, she maintains still her jovial and optimistic way of living, and she has mentioned that, “I am in an exclusive relationship with myself, my children and my career. I want to focus on myself.”


Wong Li Lin is an amazing everyday-hero-and-role-model for many of us. I see her as a great inspiration; for someone without a proper childhood, she has achieved great heights with her own capability and a dose of benefactors along the way. She has also used her story to inspire youths and to help others. Despite her broken marriage, she still remains jovial and seeks her best to give back to community and to raise her 2 children well.


As a woman, she has had her share of tough times. But she has also live out the essence of the quote: “Tough Times Don’t Last, Tough People Do”. Hope that everyone can find a lesson or two from her story and let her be an inspiration to you!




This article was written by Zenith Chua via UN Volunteering service.

ABOUT AUTHOR
Zenith is in her senior year at Singapore Management University, majoring in strategic management and organizational behavior & human resources. Beyond school, she learns from various MOOCs (massive open online courses), so as to satisfy her seemingly ever growing desire for knowledge. Setting academics apart, she is an active UN Volunteer with various NGOs around the world, as well as a dragonboat paddler. 

Firmly driven by her life motto, "To Live, Not Just Exist", Zenith is always on the move for new ideas and opportunities to fulfill her not-so-humble ambition of changing the world to be a better place for all.


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