Showing posts from June, 2016

Never Let Others Put You Down

By Mishaal Shahzad via UN Online Volunteering

I was born in a traditional family, where my mother stayed orientated among her in- laws for quite sometime after me and my twin sister were born. She was harassed by her mother-in-law for not having much education. In Pakistan, a girl gets married after her A-levels, as though that is the maximum level of education she can obtain. My mother was among those women. She wanted to pursue her career but the societial norms and the culture prevented her from proceeding after her A-levels. My mother did everything possible to please her in-laws. She did many chores,  cooked, house cleaned, and more.  But my grandmother always talked down to her, especially in front of relatives.They would either disown my mother in front of relatives or would take her daughters out  and leave her behind. They would also cut the wires of the telephone, so she couldn’t call her mother. On other occasions, if anyone praised my mother, her in-laws would not acknowledg…

You Can Overcome Domestic Violence and Bullying

By Daniela Atamoros Garcia via UN Volunteers

Fear? Only the silence. Since I can remember my house had always been a violent place. I grew up listening to the insults and shouts of my father. I saw my mother being beaten and crying almost all the time.  My childhood is full of memories of a dysfunctional family. There was nothing else in this world I hated most than seeing my mother sad. I always did everything to please her, for mom had the lowest self-esteem and believed she did not deserve a life without violence. So during all these years, despite my young age, I decided to show her my strength.  I wanted her to understand that women are more than the typical stereotype of getting married, having children and, "meeting a man."  I focused completely on my studies, but never neglected my soul nor my heart. Despite the bad moral example that my father gave me, I decided not to be like him. And that decision was the most important because rather than repeating a pattern, I learn…

Don't Let Bullying Lower Your Self Esteem

Story submitted by Mwila Mwaba via SAFIGI Volunteering

Nachizya Edith Namukanga is a third year student at the University of Zambia pursuing a degree in development studies. She is the founder of Girls Unite, a non-governmental organisation which targets girls from grade ten to grade twelve encouraging them to be the change they want to see.
Her compassion to help stems from the fact that she was bullied in secondary school, negatively impacting her self-esteem. Through guidance, counselling and the support from her loved ones, she overcame her doubts, her fears and her insecurities.

Nachizya is a brave, driven and self-motivated young lady committed to the plight of girls throughout the world and making a difference one school at a time.  She is a keen believer in addressing issues girls face head on and helping girls one school at a time.

Taking Anti-Depressants Doesn't Make Me Weak

By Hannah Ribbens via UN Online Volunteers

I have always wanted to be in the military. It has interested me for years, and I came so close to joining multiple times, but it was never the quite the right time. Now that I am finishing my masters degree in public health, I thought that this would be the perfect opportunity to serve my country and go on an adventure.
In addition to finishing up my masters and moving across the country, I also discovered that I needed to be on anti-depressants. I had been struggling with depression for a solid ten years, but I didn’t understand until recently that other people didn’t feel that way; after ten years of dealing with it, how was I to know that the way I felt wasn’t normal?
Getting on proper medication was a game changer for my life. I used to wake up every day and push myself so hard just to get anything accomplished. I no longer struggle to do all of the things that I do and projects I want to accomplish. Before I would desperately want to mee…