One thing should cross our minds when a strong ideology like Feminism is fronted, think about that sister you’ve never had or that mother you’ve always wished to have. Let’s face it, many of our Young girls out there find themselves making uninformed decisions reason being, no one is there to avail to them that wake-up call meant to be comprehended from someone close. Majority of us will call it growth, a period when transformation happens, it’s kinda inevitable for every living human being. We all try to handle it in the best way possible. We are also here to celebrate the big mile-stones the Feminist and Women Movements have achieved since their existence.
Feminist Transformational leadership unlike what the rest of society’s views may sound like, is the only tool Young Women in leadership spaces have got to thrive in these male dominated systems. Sisterhood, women uplift women are some of the principles that uphold the Feminist Movement here in Uganda. Since the 1900s, when the struggle for women’s rights started, women movements have continued to evidently show proper organization when it comes to enhancing participation in Leadership and it’s not about to stop now. So much transformed approaches in addressing women’s issues… Take a look.
Women’s economic empowerment:
All discussions and plans can be done, Mentor-ship programs can successfully be completed but without having the capacity to generate enough resources and the ability to create sustainability among-st the available women movements, then a major setback is likely to be marked in the struggle to enhance women’s participation in Leadership. A big credit goes to mobilization, yes many Young Girls, community leaders have been reached out to, even more credit to the technical support that has been provided to them, we can proudly say this generation is more than ready to take on the initiative, however, where do we start? Do we have the capacity to mobilize resources on our own?
How many women/ feminist networks do we belong to and how impactful are they to our communities? These are some of the questions we must ask ourselves as we are accelerating women’s participation in Leadership. So much social capital available but the challenge remains for us to convert that into income generating initiatives. This can only be achieved through the ability to harness the full potential of Young women in our communities.
Feminist Transformational Leadership is one approach that has given women’s issues a human face. Many Young Women have been deliberated and given a shoulder to cry on when things weren’t transpiring as expected in the different spaces they were in, survivors of sexual violence, Gender Based Violence felt a sense of belonging and living a more purposeful life. The main principle of Feminism remained dismantling patriarchal systems which was an unending journey where mega achievements in some of the key male dominated systems like the justice system in Uganda have been achieved. But that must be just an ice-breaker as we shall require more than the law but rather its legislation and formulation. Equal representation of women in high leadership positions must be achieved. Political empowerment must be a priority in enhancing women’s participation in Leadership.
The spirit of Volunteerism created better and strong ties for Young Feminist Leaders. It’s a culture that must continuously be instilled in the next generation of course with principles attached to promote its value. Addressing underlying challenges with volunteerism in Feminist and Women-led organizations becomes key. It also adds relevance to the #WomenUpLiftWomen Movement.
A topic that takes us to the core principles of Feminism and Women Transformational Leadership. Knowing who we really are starting from our Bodies and our Sexual Reproductive Health can’t be down played. All things we enjoy and feel as Young Women such as our bodies, clothes, the way we look, and the way we express our sexual feelings is very important. We might express our sexuality by the way we walk, talk, dance, or sing. Being comfortable in our own skin and body plays a big role in enhancing Women’s participation in Leadership. Politics of the body is abit tricky, bottom line is we can’t change who we are but rather we can learn how to live peacefully and harmoniously regardless of our differences. Stigma and Discrimination has always been the main issue especially for Young Women Living with HIV. For some reason communities are intimidated by such extra-ordinary women, this has not only affected their social well-being but also their ability to become great leaders and creators of Change.
Cyber-bullying, Gender Based Violence, Sexual Violence, Domestic Violence have turned a toll on the ability of Young Women on a journey to great leadership. The paradigm shift marked, has limited access to psycho-social support groups previously used as platforms to build strong movements. New innovations to keep such strong bonds among the Feminist Movement must be recognized and adapted to. Mental related issues like depression, suicides, bipolar disorders, hypertension, anxiety are on the rise among-st Young Women. Such issues threaten the confidence and ability for us to participate in high leadership positions.
In conclusion, Feminist Transformational Leadership becomes the answer to strengthening both Feminist and Women Movements. Subscribing to a greater cause that promotes the Health and Well-being of Adolescent Girls and Young Women shouldn’t have divided efforts. We need to come together with combined efforts regardless of what Movement we belong to. Much appreciation to our sisters who not at any single day have laid down their tools in this struggle. We see you, we know you and we are in this together!